|Clergy Sex Abuse Victim Speaks Publicly for First Time
Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests
October 26, 2010
Holding signs and childhood photos at a sidewalk news conference, a clergy sex abuse victim will
-- disclose his name and discuss his "first of its kind" predator priest & cover up lawsuit,
-- show evidence that the admitted molester who hurt him is in a parish even now,
-- beg Sacramento's bishop to help get his predator out of ministry now, and
-- give copies of a letter he's sending to the Pope, prodding him to stop letting this priest (and other child molesting clerics) move across borders and continue functioning as priests.
With other victims, he will also urge anyone who saw, suspected or suffered clergy sex crimes to call police, get help, expose predators, protect kids and start healing.
Tuesday, Oct. 26, at 11:00 a.m.
Outside the Sacramento Catholic diocese headquarters ("chancery"), 2011 Broadway, Sacramento, CA
Several individuals who were molested by clergy including a California man who is speaking out for the first time and has a pending civil lawsuit and a Missouri man who heads a support group called SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (SNAPnetwork.org)
An alleged predator priest, Father Antonio Pinal (a.k.a. Fr. Costellano Jose Pinal) who worked in the Sacramento diocese, is now living and working for the church in Cuernavaca, Mexico (according to two written diocesan sources that will be handed out). One of Pinal's victims, Juan "Ricardo" Torres, is upset and worried about the safety of children in that area. So he is appealing to Pope Benedict and Sacramento Bishop Jaime Soto to oust Pinal from the active ministry now and from the priesthood eventually. Torres also wants Soto to work harder to find and console other Pinal victims, and urge them to call police so that Pinal might be prosecuted and jailed.
Several months ago, Torres filed an unprecedented new civil child sex abuse and cover up lawsuit against the Sacramento Catholic diocese. It utilizes a little-known state insurance code provision to charge church officials with negligence, negligent retention/supervision and failure to warn, sexual battery, fraud, and fraudulent concealment/intentional non-disclosure.
One of Pinal's victims reported to a Catholic pastor in 1988 that Pinal sexual abused a child a Catholic pastor.. Two diocesan representatives (including then-Bishop Francis Quinn's lawyer) met with that victim and assured him that Pinal was going to be watched very closely and kept away from children. The church officials sent the victim to a church-chosen psychiatrist and paid for the therapy.
But in 2002, without ever notifying the victim, a diocesan lawyer disclosed the victim's identity to a Butte County prosecutor and gave him a 1991 letter from Pinal to Quinn. In that letter, Pinal asked Quinn if Pinal had clearance to return to the United States.
Torres' lawsuit charges that the diocese never reported Pinal to law enforcement until 2002, even though it had known of his criminal sexual misconduct some 13 years earlier. As a result, Pinal quietly returned to Mexico later in 1989, where he still works as a Catholic priest.
The lawsuit states that under the California Insurance Code, church officials were required to provide the victim with a written notice of when his statute of limitations would expire, because it had made an advanced payment (for therapy). Because the diocese never did this, the victim can take legal action even now, years after the actual crimes.
This is believed to be the first case for child sexual abuse filed under this insurance code section in California.
Pinal worked at Catholic churches in at least five northern California towns: Gridley, Biggs, Live Oak, Winters, and Esparto. He was ordained in 1980.
In 2003, according to BishopAccountability.org, "Pinal was charged with two counts of forcible sodomy in 2003, but the charges were dropped when the U.S. Supreme Court struck down a new California law that would have allowed prosecution of child sexual abuse cases beyond the prior statute of limitations."
Torres is represented by Sacramento attorney Dr. Joseph C. George (916) 442-7100; (916) 802-7949 (cell).
A photo of Pinal is available at BishopAccountability.org
Contact: David Clohessy 314 566 9790 cell (SNAPclohessy@aol.com), Crystal Shaw 916 670 5595
Any original material on these pages is copyright © BishopAccountability.org 2004. Reproduce freely with attribution.