December 20, 2017 01:36 AM

An official with the Catholic Church says Cardinal Bernard Law, the disgraced former archbishop of Boston, has died at 86.

Law recently had been hospitalized in Rome. The official asked to remain anonymous because he was not authorized to announce the death to the public.

Law was the Boston archbishop in 2002 when court documents revealed he had failed to stop priests who molested children.

Darren McCollester/Getty

Law and other church leaders had moved guilty clergy from parish to parish in Massachusetts without alerting parents or police. He resigned amid a public uproar over his actions.

Vatican officials later appointed him to run a major basilica in Rome. Critics condemned the appointment as a reward for the cardinal.

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