|Group Urges Orlando Bishop to Warn Public about Predator Priest
By Fernando Quintero
April 24, 2009
In a small sidewalk news conference this afternoon, activists from a national group representing survivors of sexual abuse by priests released legal documents they say prove allegations of sexual abuse by a former Orlando Catholic cleric.
Court records released by the national organization SNAP, Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, show that former Orlando priest Vernon Uhran asserted his Fifth Amendment privilege nearly 90 times in a videotaped deposition dated Aug. 8, 2008. The group claims the former priest's refusal to answer such questions as whether he had sodomized and performed oral sex on over a dozen boys proves he is guilty of those crimes.
The group also presented a notarized declaration by a sexual abuse victim's mother which shows Orlando Catholic officials were warned years ago about Uhran.
Diocese representatives did not immediately return phone calls for comment.
In June 2006, two lawsuits against the Diocese of Orlando alleging sex abuse in the 1970s by Uhran were settled for $250,000. The lawsuits claimed the diocese knew about the allegations of abuse by Uhran, who is now retired and living in Tennessee, but did nothing to stop the abuse. Uhran was instead transferred from parish to parish.
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