The 144 plaintiffs settled with the diocese in 2007 for nearly $200 million.

The Diocese of San Diego - Comment on 2010 November 3 (2)

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2010 November 3 (2)
The files show what the diocese knew about abusive priests, starting decades before any allegations became public, and that some church leaders shuffled priests from parish to parish or overseas despite credible complaints against them. Read more:

Decades-old sex abuse uncovered

Church files stir up hornet’s nest

Attorneys for nearly 150 people who claim sexual abuse by Roman Catholic priests have made nearly 10 000 pages of previously sealed internal church documents public, revealing at least one previously unknown decades-old case in which a priest under police investigation was allowed to leave the US after the Diocese of San Diego intervened.

The records are from the personnel files of 48 priests who were either accused or convicted of sexual abuse or were named in civil lawsuit.

The 144 plaintiffs settled with the diocese in 2007 for nearly $200 million.

The files show what the diocese knew about abusive priests, starting decades before any allegations became public, and that some church leaders shuffled priests from parish to parish or overseas despite credible complaints against them.

At least one of the priests, Gustavo Benson, is still in active ministry in the Diocese of Ensenada in Mexico.

Another case outlined in the files involves the Reverend Robert Nikliborc, who was sent to a psychiatric treatment facility in the 1950s after the diocese received complaints, then became the director of a Roman Catholic residential facility for troubled boys called Boystown of the Desert in California.

Boys who lived there filed lawsuits against Nikliborc and were part of the 2007 settlement. The priest died while litigation was under way.

The papers also contain documents from the files of the Reverend Anthony Rodrigue. In 1976, a group of parents at Rodrigue’s parish in Heber, California, complained he had molested their children, according to court documents.

About 30 people filed lawsuits against the diocese alleging sexual abuse by the priest, who died within the last year.

 

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