April 12, 2012 – The number of reports of sexual abuse committed by Catholic priests skyrocketed by more than 15% last year, according to a recent audit released by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. In 2011, there were nearly 500 credible reports filed against Roman Catholic priests or deacons nationwide. Sadly, the audit states that the vast majority of these violations were committed against minors under the age of 18. Clergy Abuse Update 5/25/12: This week, thousands of documents concerning nine Roman Catholic priests who settled a landmark clergy abuse lawsuit in 2006 were made public. The newly-released files provide a detailed look into the accusations, as well as reveal instances when members of the clergy were allowed to interact with children despite their superiors being aware of previous indiscretions. Click here to learn more. Free Clergy Abuse Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has been abused, molested, or otherwise victimized by a member of the church, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a clergy abuse suit and we can help.
What’s the problem?
In response to the mounting claims against priests and other clergy members, the Roman Catholic Church has spent approximately $144 million to date fighting the allegations, about $50 million of which was used for settlements. Cardinal Timothy Dolan, president of the Conference of Catholic Bishops, was quick to respond to the report, stating “we renew our promise to strive to the fullest to end societal scourge of child sexual abuse.” Barbara Blaine, founder of Chicago-based Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAP), went on record to say that while Catholic officials have improved their rhetoric in regards to these sensitive matters, the church itself has not done much to change its methods of operation. “As long as the bishops allow predators to remain in the ministry without punishment we have to assume that children are at risk and that’s it’s possible that more will be abused,” said Blaine, who is a former victim of sexual abuse herself.
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The Sexual Abuse Litigation Group at our law firm is an experienced team of trial lawyers that focus on the representation of plaintiffs in clergy abuse lawsuits. We are handling individual litigation nationwide and currently accepting new abuse and molestation cases in all 50 states. Free Clergy Abuse Lawsuit Evaluation: If you or a loved one has been abused, molested, or otherwise victimized by a member of the church, you should contact our law firm immediately. You may be entitled to compensation by filing a clergy abuse suit and we can help.