Diocese Sued Again over Abuse by Priests
January 27, 2005
ALLEGHENY COUNTY — Two men this week filed civil suits against the Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh, claiming they were plied with alcohol and sexually abused decades ago by priests and that the diocese covered up the priests' actions.
One accuser, identified in court papers as a 53-year-old McKeesport man, said he was an 11-year-old student at St. Mary School and a member of St. Mary Czestochowa Church in McKeesport when he was assaulted by the Rev. John Lukasik.
The other plaintiff, identified as a 45-year-old man, said he was 15 when he was fondled and sodomized at St. Paul Church in Butler by the Rev. M. Eric Diskin.
Thirty-five men and women have filed civil suits against the diocese over the past year, alleging they were sexually assaulted many years ago by 18 priests who have since resigned or died. The statute of limitations has passed for any of the individual priests to be sued. The plaintiffs, through their attorney, Alan H. Perer, blame the church and its past and present leaders, Bishop Donald Wuerl and his predecessor, Anthony Bevilacqua, who since has retired as archbishop of Philadelphia.
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