View attachment 60353 A lawyer says the number of children sexually or physically abused by priests while serving in a choir run by Pope Emeritus Benedict's brother at their Catholic school in the German city of Regensburg totals 231. That’s more than three times as many cases as had been reported previously by the church. Ulrich Weber, a lawyer hired by the church, announced the new cases Friday as part of his continued investigation into the scandal concerning Domspatzen which is the official choir for St. Peter’s Cathedral in Bavaria, Germany. The first allegations of sexual abuse were made public in 2010 when a well-known composer named Franz Wittenbrink told the German magazine Spiegel he had been abused while enrolled there. Weber said the reported instances of sexual abuse included offenses such as fondling and rape while physical abuses such as withholding food and beatings also occurred. He says victims named 10 perpetrators, reports the French news service Agence France-Presse. The alleged abuse occurred between 1953 and 1992. For 30 of those years, the choir was run by the older brother of Pope Benedict, who resigned from service in 2013 due to declining health. Overall, 2,100 students participated in the choir during that period. Weber said he expects as many as a third of participants may have been abused over the years. Last year, the church began paying compensation of 2,500 euros to victims. The famous group of boys and young men is also known as the “Cathedral Sparrows” and is more than 1,000 years old. They sing each Sunday at the cathedral in Regensburg and also travel the world to perform. Around the world, at least 3,400 allegations of sexual abuse have been made against Catholic clergy. Benedict defrocked 384 accused priests in the final two years of his reign. The Catholic Church spent more than $150 million in just one year to investigate the claims.