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Court shelves case against German bishop

Monday - 11/18/2013, 5:34pm  ET

FILE - In this Sept. 24, 2013 file picture Limburg Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst, right, attends a mass during the meeting of German bishops in Fulda, Germany, A German court says it’s shelved a case against a German bishop removed from his diocese by the Vatican over a furor caused by the cost of his new residence. The Hamburg administrative court said Monday Nov. 18, 2013 the case against Limburg Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst would be closed upon his payment of a 20,000 euro ($27,000) fine. The bishop was accused of giving false statements in a case he brought against Der Spiegel magazine over its report he flew first-class to India on a trip to visit poor children. (AP Photo/dpa,Arne Dedert)

BERLIN (AP) -- A German court says it's shelved a case against a German bishop removed from his diocese by the Vatican over a furor caused by the cost of his new residence.

The Hamburg administrative court said Monday the case against Limburg Bishop Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst would be closed upon his payment of a 20,000 euro ($27,000) fine.

The bishop was accused of giving false statements in a case he brought against Der Spiegel magazine over its report that he flew first-class to India on a trip to visit poor children.

The dpa news agency said prosecutors only accepted the deal after Tebartz-van Elst confessed, but diocese spokesman Stephan Schnelle would not comment beyond the court press release.

The church is investigating the bishop's spending of 31 million euros on his residence.


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