First of 80 Planned Lawsuits against Diocese Filed

KFMB [San Diego CA]
October 10, 2003

-A 52-year-old South Bay man is suing the Diocese of San Diego alleging abuse by a priest more than three decades ago.

The lawsuit filed Thursday is the first of scores of suits that will be brought against the church before the end of the year, attorneys told The San Diego Union Tribune.

Irwin Zalkin, a Del Mar lawyer who sits on a committee of plaintiffs' attorneys in San Diego who represent clients accusing priests of abuse, told the newspaper that as many as 80 suits will be filed in the coming weeks. About a dozen lawsuits already have been filed against the diocese this year.

With the expected new lawsuits, the total likely will pass 100. If that happens, the San Diego diocese would have the second-highest number of clergy abuse suits in the state, attorneys said. Only the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, facing about 300 to 400 lawsuits, would have more.

Attorneys plan to hold a news conference Tuesday in front of the Hall of Justice in downtown San Diego to discuss the litigation, Zalkin told the Union-Tribune.

The suit filed Thursday concerns molestations that allegedly occurred at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Chula Vista between 1958 and 1966. The victim was 8 years old when, he says, the parish priest, Rudolph Galindo, molested him. Galindo eventually became a monsignor before retiring last year.

The diocese last November settled the claim of one former altar boy who also accused Galindo of abusing him.

The suit filed Thursday said 11 former altar boys have come forward with allegations of sexual abuse against Galindo, according to the Union-Tribune.

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