ABUSE TRACKER

A digest of links to media coverage of clergy abuse. For recent coverage listed in this blog, read the full article in the newspaper or other media source by clicking “Read original article.” For earlier coverage, click the title to read the original article.

July 1, 2016

Apuron accusers file lawsuit

GUAM
Guam Daily Post

John O’Connor | Post News Staff

While the Archdiocese of Agana, under the direction of Archbishop Anthony Apuron, indicated it would seek legal action against the archbishop’s accusers, the church now finds itself the target of a lawsuit from the same individuals whose allegations it denied.

The four accusers so far – Roland Sondia, Walter Denton, Edith Doris Concepcion and Roy Quintanilla – filed a complaint for libel and slander against the archdiocese and Apuron yesterday at the Superior Court of Guam.

The complaint referenced the various statements Apuron and the archdiocese released prior to the archbishop’s removal from church matters by the Vatican. Quintanilla was the first among the four to come forward with allegations of abuse in May followed shortly by Concepcion, who claimed her son, Joseph Quinata, had also been abused.

Apuron denied both allegations, and subsequent releases from the archdiocese characterized the accusations as malicious attacks to discredit the archbishop. Shortly after Concepcion came forward, a release was issued on behalf of the archdiocese stating it was “in the process of taking canonical and legal measures against those perpetrating these malicious lies.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Church tries to punish girls who sued over sex abuse by outing them: ’They should not be able to hide

KANSAS
Raw Story

TRAVIS GETTYS
01 JUL 2016

A Kansas church is asking a court to help punish two girls who sued over sexual abuse by a former vacation Bible school volunteer.

Kessler Lichtenegger, a former volunteer at Westside Family Church, pleaded guilty last year to attempted rape and attempted electronic solicitation involving two girls who attended the church.

The girls, who were both younger than 14 years old, and their families filed a lawsuit June 9 that alleges church officials knew about Lichtenegger’s extensive past sexual conduct and crimes involving children.

Officials at the Southern Baptist church denied knowledge of those previous juvenile convictions, but admittedly knew they should pay close attention to Lichtenegger, who was 17 years old when he volunteered for the summer Bible school in 2014 and assaulted one of the girls in the parking lot.

However, the lawsuit accuses church officials of ignoring their own protocols and allowing Lichtenegger to be around children outside of his father’s supervision.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Former Woonsocket priest banned from service over alleged sexual misconduct

RHODE ISLAND
The Valley Breeze

WOONSOCKET – A priest who served in the Diocese of Providence for nearly 50 years, including a stint in Woonsocket, was removed from service this week under allegations of sexual misconduct with a minor.

Rev. Samuel Turillo was ordained to the priesthood in 1946 and served at St. Anthony in Woonsocket from 1962-1965. He retired from active ministry in 1994 and will soon be 96 years old. Turillo has now been prohibited by the diocese from exercising sacred ministry over an incident that allegedly took place 60 years ago.

In a statement, diocese officials said the had received an accusation and immediately reported the information to the Rhode Island State Police and the Attorney General’s Office.

“Simultaneously, diocesan officials launched an investigation that concluded the allegation was of a credible nature,” it states. “The Diocese of Providence takes very seriously all allegations of abuse and works closely with law enforcement agencies in accordance with the Charter and diocesan policy when an allegation of abuse is reported. Church law is firm and consistent regardless of the age of the accused priest or the time frame of the alleged incident.”

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Sentencing for man who tried to buy toddler in Tijuana

CALIFORNIA
CBS 8

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – A former seminary student from Ohio who tried to adopt or purchase female toddlers in Tijuana so he could sexually molest them is scheduled to be sentenced Friday at the federal courthouse in San Diego.

Joel Alexander Wright pleaded guilty in April to attempted enticement of a minor.

The defendant admitted that he was the author of numerous sexually explicit emails in which he described to a cooperating witness and an undercover federal agent how he intended to sexually assault various children in Mexico, up to 4 years old.

Wright admitted that beginning in November, he placed ads on Craigslist Tijuana purporting to seek a female tour guide. When he received a response from a cooperating witness, Wright confided that he wanted to “adopt/own a baby girl (under the age of 3) and I want to have intercourse with her after I own her but don’t be telling people that … I won’t pay until I have seen the baby and I will pay the parents then … the cheapest baby under 3 would be good.”

In another email to an undercover agent, Wright admitted that he wrote he had “picked up an infant pain relief med and a pretty outfit which I think should fit the 1- or 2-year old.” Wright also wrote that he had purchased an American Airlines ticket to travel from Ohio to San Diego last Jan. 29.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Yeshiva University’s Child Molesters

UNITED STATES
Project Jewish Kids

In 2013, Yeshiva University was sued by 34 plaintiffs alleging they were sexually abused when they were students there. Although the Torah does not recognize a statute of limitations, Y.U. invoked this arbitrary secular law that Judaism rejects to get the lawsuit dismissed because the plaintiffs filed their claims too late.

Due to the scandalous revelations contained in the lawsuit and the resultant public outcry, Y.U. hired a law firm to investigate itself. Y.U.’s Board of Trustees pledged to make public the “specific details” of the investigation. But before the report could be made public, the law firm claimed that a “Special Committee” (it doesn’t say who was on the committee) had intervened and directed it not to report the details, reneging on Y.U.’s public pledge of transparency. The result was that the law firm issued a 53-page report that said nothing about the pervasive sexual and physical abuse of Y.U. students except for a vague 3-paragraph summary buried on page 8.

The summary stated the obvious and what was already known from the massive Y.U. lawsuit. That numerous students were indeed sexually and physically abused over the course of many years by a number of individuals in a position of authority. It also stated that the abuse wasn’t just limited to Y.U’s high school, but extended to other Y.U. facilities that were not identified. It further stated that members of Y.U.’s administration were aware of the abuse, and on multiple occasions did not act to protect its students and sometimes didn’t even respond to allegations of abuse.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Lyon bishop fires four paedophile priests as Church changes sex-abuse monitor

FRANCE
RFI

The Archbishop of Lyon has fired four priests for child sex abuse as police investigate allegations that he failed to remove other paedophile priests in the past. The French Catholic Church on Friday changed the head of its anti-paedophilia unit and appointed a lay member as a full-time member of the body.

Lyon Archbishop Cardinal Philippe Barbarin relieved four unnamed priests of their functions on Thursday, following advice from a group of experts, including a judge, a psychiatrist and parents.

Other priests, who have already been convicted, are to be individually monitored.

All the cases are known to the judicial authorities, said the diocese, which has been rocked by scandal for more than six months following revelations that no action had been taken against several priests accused of sexual abuse over the course of many years.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

MI5 officer rejects Kincora intelligence operation ‘exploitation’ claims

NORTHERN IRELAND
Belfast Telegraph

A high-ranking MI5 officer has rejected claims that child abuse at an infamous Belfast boys’ home was exploited as part of an intelligence operation.

The anonymised deputy director, known only as 9004, also said the UK security service only became aware of abuse at Kincora in 1980, when allegations broke in the media.

He said: “I can certainly deny that we were ever involved in an operation to exploit abuse that was taking place at Kincora for intelligence purposes.”

Officer 9004 was giving evidence via videolink from an undisclosed location to the Historical Institutional Abuse (HIA) inquiry which is examining allegations a paedophile ring preyed on vulnerable young boys at the former east Belfast home during the 1970s.

It has long been alleged the security services knew about the abuse but did nothing, and instead used the information to blackmail the prominent people such as politicians, judges, civil servants and police officers who were the perpetrators.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Kincora boys’ home: MI5 ‘unaware’ of abuse until 1980

NORTHERN IRELAND
BBC News

A deputy director of MI5 has told the Historical Institutional Abuse inquiry that it was 1980 before it became aware of child abuse at Kincora boys’ home in east Belfast.

The officer, known as 9004, gave evidence anonymously via video link.

He told Sir Anthony Hart’s panel it was “The first time we have unambiguous information” about the abuse.

Three senior ca
re workers at the home were jailed in 1981 for sexually abusing boys in their care.
Mainstream
One of those, William McGrath, was the leader of the loyalist organisation Tara.

Officer 9004 said they did have information on Tara in the 1970s, but it was largely a fringe group.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Fugitive Oblate priest Joannis Rivoire must be extradited, activists say

CANADA
Nunatsiaq Online

JIM BELL

OTTAWA — As long as fugitive priest Joannes Rivoire, 85, remains at large in France, the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate should not be allowed to celebrate their 200th anniversary in peace, a small group of activists declared June 29 in Ottawa.

Inuit leader Piita Irniq, along with human rights activist Lieve Halsberghe and supporter Susie Utatnaaq, a former Baker Lake resident who now lives in Ottawa, gathered in front of the Edifice Deschâtelets, a building in Old Ottawa East that once stood at the centre of Roman Catholic power in eastern Ontario and served as a training school for many Oblate missionaries.

Irniq alleges that Rivoire’s sexual abuse of his lifelong friend Marius Tungilik contributed to the trauma that led to Tungilik’s death in 2012 at age 55.

While standing in front of the Oblate building, Irniq and his supporters displayed photos of Tungilik, including a photo taken of him in Naujaat when he was aged about 14.

“Father Rivoire is the reason why Marius died. I truly believe that. And that is what Marius believed as well and that is why he drank. He could never get over Father Rivoire,” Irniq said.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

MEDIA RELEASE – JUNE 30, 2016

NEW YORK
Road to Recovery

A religious order of priests and brothers, the Franciscan Friars of Holy Name Province, refuses to help a woman who is a childhood sexual abuse victim of Fr. Paul A. Walsh OFM, a/k/a Fr. La Salle A. Walsh, OFM, a priest who served at Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church and Preparatory School in Kingston, Jamaica

Woman who was sexually abused at approximately the age of ten (10) in approximately 1962 by Fr. Paul A. Walsh, OFM, a/k/a Fr. La Salle Walsh, OFM, wants the Franciscan Friars to pay for the cost of her therapy, resolve her clergy sexual abuse claim, and help her try to heal

What
A demonstration and leafleting regarding the Franciscan Friars’ Holy Name Province refusal to help a childhood sexual abuse victim of a Franciscan Friar, Fr. Paul A. Walsh, a/k/a Fr. La Salle A. Walsh, from Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church and Preparatory School in Kingston, Jamaica

When
Friday, July 1, 2016 from 11:00 am until 1:15 pm

Where
On the public sidewalk outside the headquarters of the Franciscan Friars of the Holy Name Province, 129 West 30th Street, New York, New York 10001 – 646-473-0265

Who
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Co-founder and President of Road to Recovery, Inc., a non-profit charity based in New Jersey which assists victims of sexual abuse and their families, and members of Road to Recovery, Inc.

Why
A woman who was approximately ten-years old in the 1960s and sexually abused by Fr. Paul A. Walsh, a/k/a Fr. La Salle A. Walsh, OFM, at Our Lady of the Angels Catholic Church and Preparatory School in Kingston, Jamaica, wants the Holy Name Province of the Franciscans to pay for her therapy, resolve her claim, and help her try to heal. Demonstrators will demand of the Holy Name Province of the Franciscans that it help the woman who was sexually abused as a child by a Franciscan priest try to heal by paying for her therapy and resolving her clergy sexual abuse claim in a timely and just manner.

Contacts
Robert M. Hoatson, Ph.D., Road to Recovery, Inc. – 862-368-2800

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

WHO GAVE YOU PERMISSION?

AUSTRALIA
Scribe

‘Who gave you permission to speak to anybody?’ Rabbi Telsner, the leader of the Yeshivah Centre, thundered during his regular weekly sermon. It was a question directed to Manny Waks’s father, after Manny had finally gone public with his accusations of sexual abuse and its cover-up within the centre.

Manny Waks was raised in an ultra-Orthodox Jewish family, the second oldest of 17 children. As an adolescent he was sexually abused at the religious school across the road from where he lived. Betrayed by those he trusted, Manny rebelled against his way of life, though he later went on to become a prominent Jewish community leader.

In mid-2011 Manny went public about his experiences to bring justice to the abusers, and those who covered up their crimes. For his courage in speaking out, Manny and his family were intimidated and shunned by their community. Although he has been forced to leave Australia, Manny continues to advocate for survivors and hold those in power to account.

This is the story of a man who shattered a powerful code of silence, the battles he has fought, the vindication he has earned, and the extraordinary toll it has taken on his personal life and that of his loved ones.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Pardes 360: Shining a Light on the Shadow of Abuse

UNITED STATES
Elmad

Posted by Judy Klitsner on June 28, 2016

As I recently sat in a movie theater watching the Oscar-winning Spotlight, one recurring thought dominated all others: I could have written this script. Although the film focuses on abusive priests and the Catholic Church that protected them, the patterns and ingredients were all painfully familiar from my own experiences in a Jewish youth group in the 1970’s.

In my teenage years, I came into contact with a charismatic, powerful rabbi who regularly blurred the lines between religious leadership and his own need for physical and psychological gratification. I watched as he carefully selected and “groomed” specific teenagers, using his position of religious authority in order to manipulate young minds and to create an ever-increasing cadre of loyal followers who would follow his every directive. The rabbi was not particularly careful in hiding his actions; those around him would make knowing jokes about his behavior without ever attempting to stop him. In fact, when the rabbi tried to assault me and I threatened to speak to his superiors, he laughed and assured me I would be telling them nothing they did not already know.

In the years following my experience, I have come to terms with the fact that there are sociopaths in every realm of life, and that the clergy is no exception. What I have found much more difficult to accept is the web of support surrounding the offender: too often, communal leaders and members willfully refuse to protect victims and potential victims of predatory spiritual leaders. In my efforts to understand this persistent lack of moral action, I have observed the following processes: feelings of collegiality, of cognitive dissonance (such a holy person could not have done such spotlight-movie 510x300__OPterrible things), a misguided concern about lashon ha-ra (speaking ill of others), and fear for one’s own position or livelihood in challenging a colleague of great power and stature. To my mind, worst of all is a kind of cost-benefit analysis in human lives, which suggests that if the offending spiritual leader does more good than harm, it is best to not to interfere. Whatever the motivations are for the protectors, one thing is clear: without their support, the scourge of abusive clergy would be ended.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

SBC church seeks to ‘out’ child sex abuse victims

KANSAS
Stop Baptist Predators

Christa Brown

A Southern Baptist megachurch that is being sued over sexual abuse inflicted on minor girls has filed a court petition requesting that the girls’ names be made public.

Although sexual abuse lawsuits involving minors are typically filed under “Jane Doe” or “John Doe” pseudonyms in order to preserve the children’s anonymity, Westside Family Church in Lenexa, Kansas, has requested that the court require the children and their mother to proceed in open court under their real names.

David Clohessy, executive director of the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, described it as a “stunningly callous” and “mean-spirited” tactic.

Clohessy’s organization, SNAP, has been instrumental in bringing countless clergy sex abuse cases into the light of day. It was originally formed by survivors of sexual abuse committed by Catholic priests, but today, SNAP has members who were sexually abused within many other faith groups, including Baptist groups.

Clohessy stated that, in his 28 year history of advocacy work, this was the first time he had ever seen a religious institution seeking to “out” a minor who was bringing forward a claim of sexual abuse. “I’ve never seen a defendant try to ‘out’ kids who are still kids in a child sex case,” he said.

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Post-scandal, rabbi finds new job in Scarsdale

NEW YORK
Riverdale Press

By Anthony Capote

Rabbi Jonathan Rosenblatt, who stepped down earlier this year as the leader of the Riverdale Jewish Center amid scrutiny of his naked sauna chats with young boys, has found new work, providing mental health services in Scarsdale.

Scarsdale Integrative Medicine has approached Rabbi Rosenblatt to offer him a job in pastoral and spiritual counseling, Rabbi Rosenblatt’s lawyer said.

“Rabbi Rosenblatt, over the years, did a lot of work at various hospices,” said the attorney, Meyer Koplow. “At one of the hospices where he worked, he did a lot of work with one of the doctors in [Scarsdale Integrative Medicine]. When that doctor became aware that the rabbi was free of his responsibilities at the RJC, he reached out to the rabbi to ask whether he would be interested in doing counseling in this group practice he has.”

Rabbi Rosenblatt announced his resignation from RJC in February, after reports of his naked sauna chats sent ripples through the congregation. The Bronx district attorney found no evidence of criminal activity, but some at RJC argued the rabbi’s actions were inappropriate.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

Ratzinger si racconta: «Così ho deciso di lasciare il Papato»Ratzinger si racconta: «Così ho deciso di lasciare il Papato»

CITTA’ DEL VATICANO
Corriere della Sera

Un Papa che traccia il bilancio del suo papato. Dopo le dimissioni del 2013, Benedetto XVI rompe il silenzio e racconta se stesso e il suo pontificato in un libro. È la prima volta che accade nella storia della Chiesa. L’uscita, in contemporanea mondiale, è prevista per il 9 settembre: in Italia a pubblicare il libro (Ultime conversazioni, 240 pagine, euro 12,90) sarà Garzanti in libreria e «Corriere della Sera» in edicola.

Dall’infanzia al Vaticano

Il volume, un libro intervista scritto con Peter Seewald, giornalista tedesco autore in passato di altre due conversazioni con il Papa emerito, è una sorta di autobiografia ragionata e tocca tutte le tappe più importanti della vita di Joseph Ratzinger: l’infanzia sotto il regime nazista, la scoperta della vocazione, gli anni difficili della guerra e poi la carriera in Vaticano, fino all’elezione al soglio pontificio, con l’ansia dei primi giorni da successore di Pietro e, alla fine, la decisione sofferta delle dimissioni e la rinuncia al trono di Pietro.

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In memoirs, ex Pope Benedict says Vatican ‘gay lobby’ tried to wield power -report

VATICAN CITY
Channel News Asia

VATICAN CITY: Former Pope Benedict says in his memoirs that no-one pressured him to resign but alleges that a “gay lobby” in the Vatican had tried to influence decisions, a leading Italian newspaper reported on Friday.

The book, called “The Last Conversations”, is the first time in history that a former pope judges his own pontificate after it is over. It is due to be published on Sept. 9.

Citing health reasons, Benedict in 2013 became the first pope in six centuries to resign. He promised to remain “hidden to the world” and has been living in a former convent in the Vatican gardens.

Italy’s Corriere della Sera daily, which has acquired the Italian newspaper rights for excerpts and has access to the book, ran a long article on Friday summarising its key points.

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Other Pontifical Acts, 01.07.2016

VATICAN CITY
Vatican Information Service – Bollettino

Vatican City, 1 July 2016 – The Holy Father appointed Msgr Georg Bätzing as bishop of Limburg (area 6,182, population 2,407,000, Catholics 638,481, priests 434, permanent deacons 70, religious 824), Germany. The bishop-elect was born in Kirchen, Germany in 1961 and was ordained a priest in 1987. He holds a doctorate in theology from the University of Trier, and has served in a number of pastoral roles in the diocese of Trier including parish vicar, and vice rector and subsequently rector of the major seminary. In 2005 he was nominated Chaplain of His Holiness. He is currently canon of the Cathedral Chapter and vicar general of the diocese of Trier.

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Pope appoints successor to German ‘bling bishop’

GERMANY
Daily Mail (UK)

BERLIN (AP) — Pope Francis has appointed a new bishop to lead Germany’s Limburg diocese, ending a more than two-year hiatus after he removed the previous bishop amid an uproar over his costly new residence.

The western German diocese said Friday that Monsignor Georg Baetzing will take the job, succeeding Franz-Peter Tebartz-van Elst. The 55-year-old Baetzing is currently vicar-general of the Trier diocese.

The pope temporarily expelled Tebartz-van Elst from Limburg in October 2013 pending a church inquiry into his 31 million-euro ($34.4-million) new residence complex. Francis then permanently removed him in March 2014.

Note: This is an Abuse Tracker excerpt. Click the title to view the full text of the original article. If the original article is no longer available, see our News Archive.

UK AUTHORITIES FAIL IN BID TO EXTRADITE BENEDICTINE MONK ACCUSED OF HISTORIC SEX CRIMES

UNITED KINGDOM
The Tablet

01 July 2016 | by Sean Smith

A judge in Kosovo has rejected an application to extradite Laurence Soper, the fugitive former abbot of Ealing Abbey in west London, because the crimes he is accused of have expired in the Balkan state.

The Times reported that the Metropolitan Police will appeal the decision to bring Laurence Soper back to the UK for trial. Soper, 72, is wanted in connection with historic child sex abuse cases in England. The former monk, who is no longer a member of the Ealing community, taught at the abbey school, St Benedict’s, in the 1970s and 1980s.

He disappeared from the Benedictine university at Sant’Anselmo in Rome, where he had been working as bursar, in 2011, after failing to return to London for further police questioning about alleged abuse.

A judge sitting in Peja, the western district of Kosovo where Soper was arrested last month, rejected the extradition request this week because the alleged crimes had overrun the 30-year statute of limitations. The Met will appeal and another hearing is expected to take place imminently at the appeal court in the capital, Pristina, The Times reported.

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Brother Dominic O’Sullivan prowled classrooms at a Hunter school and used boys for his sexual gratification

AUSTRALIA
Newcastle Herald

JOANNE MCCARTHY
July 1, 2016

HE was the altar boy from a devout Catholic family who wanted to be a brilliant engineer like his father.

He stood in court on Friday, hands shaking and fragile, to tell a judge about life after he was sexually abused for two years by a Marist Brother, and how 20 years of mail sits unopened in plastic bags that fill his house.

He can’t stand paper after Brother Dominic, whose real name is Darcy O’Sullivan, walked the classroom decades ago and sexually abused boys as they sat doing school work, in view of other boys.

“Brother Dominic presented as very confident and urbane but would quickly descend to a deep and barely suppressed anger,” his victim told Judge Kate Traill during a sentencing hearing at Sydney District Court after O’Sullivan, 78, entered guilty pleas to sexual offences against eight victims.

The offences occurred at Marist Brothers Hamilton in the 1970s and at Casino in the early 1980s.

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Accusers file lawsuit against archbishop and archdiocese

GUAM
KUAM

[with video]

Updated: Jul 01, 2016

By Krystal Paco

It’s a last resort to get the truth: four of Archbishop Anthony Apuron’s accusers are taking him to court. As of Friday morning, the alleged victims filed a libel and slander lawsuit against not only Apuron, but the Archdiocese of Agana.

He wouldn’t confess to his alleged sins at church, so Archbishop Apuron’s accusers are taking him to court. “Instead of just conducting an honest, transparent investigation, they called every single survivor a liar,” announced Walter Denton before island media at the Guam Territorial Law Library. Instead of using church resources to reach out and help victims, they called us liars. They have avoided and shunned us. They did it 40 years ago, and they are doing it again.” Denton, an alleged survivor of abuse, led Friday’s press conference to detail the elements of the libel and slander lawsuit, which was filed this morning at the Superior Court of Guam and demands a for a jury trial.

All four plaintiffs – Denton, Roy Quintanilla, Roland Sondia, and Doris Concepcion on behalf of her late son Joseph “Sonny” Quinata – are represented by Attorney David Lujan. All of the victims were altar boys at Mount Carmel Parish in Agat when they were allegedly raped or molested by Apuron, who was a priest at the time.

In response, the Archdiocese of Agana fired back – through video statements and press releases – maintaining Apuron’s innocence and calling the alleged victims liars whose intent is a malicious attack on the archbishop and the church. “These statements continue to represent the position of the Agana archdiocese through today,” continued Denton.

The Vatican then placed Apuron on leave and appointed apostolic administrator Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai to cater to the Agana archdiocese. According to the alleged victims, church leadership continues to fail them. Although Archbishop Hon had rescinded decrees previously issued by Apuron, he didn’t detract Apuron’s slanderous statements towards the victims. “Apostolic administrator Archbishop Hon has not attempted to meet with us or to reach out to us,” said Denton.

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Church calls for underage sexual assault victims to be named

KANSAS
Christian Today

Carey Lodge CHRISTIAN TODAY JOURNALIST 01 July 2016

A Kansas church is asking for the identity of two under-age girls who were the victims of sexual assault at a holiday Bible school to be revealed by the court.

Westside Family Church of Lenexa has accused the girls’ family of a “Pearl Harbor-styled barrage of negative publicity,” Baptist News Global reports, after the family “tactically decided to ‘draw fist blood’ on the issue publicly” by leaking the story to the press before notifying the church it was being sued.

The church has therefore called on the case to proceed without the use of pseudonymns to protect the teenagers’ identities.

“Ordinarily, defense counsel would stipulate permission to use of an alias in a case involving a minor claiming sexual abuse. Sadly, the minors’ parents and attorneys have chosen a different path,” the church said.

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Leonard tells why he whipped his sons at Word of Life trial

NEW YORK
Rome Sentinel

BY SEAN I. MILLS
Staff writer

“Blows that hurt drive off evil.”

This paraphrased Bible verse — from Proverbs 20:30 — was going through Bruce Leonard’s mind as he and fellow Word of Life church members whipped his two sons with a power cord, according to his testimony in County Court Wednesday afternoon.

Lucas and Christopher Leonard had admitted to sexually molesting their younger siblings and nieces and nephews, and Bruce Leonard said he wanted to see them punished.

“So they understood the hurt that they had caused…discipline for punishing them,” Leonard testified. “It was more of a reaction to what they had said.”

Lucas, age 19, later died from his injuries. Christopher, 17, would have died from kidney failure, according to testimony, but he instead spent a week in the hospital.

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Lord Carey critical of the Church over Bishop Bell affair

UNITED KINGDOM
The Argus

Joel Adams, Reporter

THE former Archbishop of Canterbury has accused the Church of England of acting like a “kangaroo court” in its handling of a historic sex abuse case.

In a debate in the House of Lords on historic sexual offences, Lord Carey said he was “deeply unhappy” with the process the Church had undertaken in the case of wartime Bishop of Chichester George Bell and said there was a case for a new approach to be taken in dealing with historic sex offences.

In October, the Diocese of Chichester announced it had paid a settlement to an unnamed survivor of sexual abuse after accusations levelled against the wartime head of the Church in Sussex, who died in 1958. His victim was five at the time.

Former Archbishop Lord Carey said: “I am distressed to make this observation of my own Church but it seems to me in this particular instance its procedures have had the character of a kangaroo court and not a just, compassionate and balanced investigation of the facts.”

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Providence Diocese: Retired priest removed for allegations of sexual abuse

RHODE ISLAND
WPRI

By Annie Shalvey
Published: June 30, 2016

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Providence Diocese announced the removal of a retired priest from the priesthood on Thursday, due to allegations of sexual abuse.

According to the Diocese, Father Samuel Turillo, now 95, is “prohibited from exercising the sacred ministry after the Diocese received a credible accusation regarding alleged sexual misconduct.”

The Diocese said the incident involved a minor and took place approximately 60 years ago.

Turillo had several assignments around Rhode Island from 1946 until his retirement in 1994.

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State Senate advances child sex abuse bill

PENNSYLVANIA
Reading Eagle

By Liam Migdail-Smith
HARRISBURG

The state Senate approved a bill to overhaul Pennsylvania’s child sex abuse laws Thursday, but the legislation lacks the key provision that victims and their advocates had demanded.

The bill did not include language that would allow victims to pursue claims for abuse that occurred decades ago. A bid to restore that retroactive provision to the bill fell short again Thursday.

Senators voted 49-0 Thursday to send the bill back to the state House with changes made Tuesday by the Senate Judiciary Committee. The Senate panel axed a provision that would have allowed victims up to age 50 to sue regardless of when the abuse occurred.

State Sen. Scott Wagner, a York County Republican, unsuccessfully attempted to restore that portion of the bill.

Many supporters of the bill say the legislation has been reduced to a half-measure that fails to provide overdue justice to victims already harmed.

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“It’s not a question of regret”: Xenophon responds to Dempsey

AUSTRALIA
inDaily

Nick Xenophon is standing firm in his refusal to apologise to the priest he named in parliament as an alleged rapist, saying “it’s not a question of regret” but that the situation “was what it was”.

Catholic priest Ian Dempsey broke years of silence on InDaily last week, when he said he “forgives” but “prays for truth and justice”, after Xenophon in 2011 used parliamentary privilege to air an accusation that he raped fellow student John Hepworth at the St Francis Xavier seminary in Adelaide in the late 1960s and early ’70s. The accusation was never substantiated.

Dempsey said Xenophon’s enduring popularity – which has hit fever pitch ahead of tomorrow’s election, and could see his fledgling party snare a handful of Lower House seats – continued to rankle with him, given the Senator’s refusal to apologise or acknowledge that he had been cleared by subsequent church, police and DPP investigations.

Xenophon yesterday told InDaily he was aware of Dempsey’s remarks but would “rather not comment on it”.

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Two steps forward, one step back

PENNSYLVANIA
Courier Times

Editorial

Posted: Friday, July 1, 2016

Under a controversial and now emasculated bill passed by a state Senate committee, future victims of child sexual abuse will have until the age of 50 to sue their attackers. Former victims would be out of luck, however.

That’s because most members of the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to remove a provision of a bill that would have altered the statute of limitations, enabling victims who were attacked as far back as the 1970s to sue their abusers. The alteration comes in the wake of enormous pressure on lawmakers from the Catholic Church, which is worried about a spate of crippling lawsuits, although the official reason for Church opposition is based on a constitutional argument.

Most committee members bought that argument, at least publicly. Among those who rejected the view is state attorney general candidate Sen. John Rafferty, who was endorsed for AG by the Judiciary Committee chairman. “I am Catholic,” Rafferty said, calling priest sex-abuse and church cover-ups outlined in a series of grand jury reports over the last 10 years both “abhorrent and disgusting,” and declaring that he saw no constitutional issues with the bill.

Nonetheless, the altered bill now goes to the full Senate. The amended version would extend to age 50 the civil statute of limitations for future victims. It also would abolish the criminal statute of limitations, enabling future victims to pursue prosecution regardless of age.

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Diocese to move administrative offices

PENNSYLVANIA
Centre Daily Times

BY LORI FALCE
lfalce@centredaily.com

The Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown is getting a new home for its administration and it is partly due to the sexual abuse scandal enveloping the area.

In a release Thursday, the diocese announced the plans to relocate from offices in Hollidaysburg to the school building of the Our Lady of Lourdes parish in Altoona.

The diocese would lease the school building, which is now being used by the Lily Pond Child Development Center. That lease expires in October.

According to the diocese, both this move and the sale of the bishop’s residence in 2014 were “appropriate given the current financial circumstances of the diocese as it responds to past cases of sexual abuse of minors.”

“In addition to being good stewards of available resources, the proposed sale will also help the diocese to refocus its mission to parishes and parishioners,” the release said.

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South Side Priest Dies Leaving Troubling Legacy

ILLINOIS
Patch

By Lorraine Swanson (Patch Staff) – July 1, 2016

Chicago, IL — A priest who unsuccessfully sued two brothers after they accused him of molesting them as children passed away suddenly on June 25.

Rev. Robert A. Stepek reportedly died while cutting grass in the heat. He was in his early 60s. The priest was a former associate pastor of Chicago’s St. Symphorosa Church and St. Christina Church and St. Joseph Church in Homewood. He was also the former pastor at St. Albert the Great Catholic Church in Burbank.

More recently he held down a civilian job as a community resource officer with the Burbank Police Department.

Stepek vehemently denied accusations that he had molested two brothers, then 9 and 16, at Symphorosa Church where had had serve from 1981 to 1983

The brothers waited until 2006 when they were adults before reporting that they had been sexually abused by Stepak in the 1980s. Stepek responded by filing an unsuccessful defamation lawsuit against the brothers while maintaining his innocence.

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Sexual acts involving Catholic priests not the worst of sins – Archbishop

GHANA
Ghana Web

Archbishop Emeritus of the Kumasi Arch Diocese Most Reverend Peter Akwasi Sarpong has taken a swipe at persons accusing the clergy especially priests of the Catholic Church of engaging in sexual intercourse indicating that it is not the worse form of sin.

In accordance with the doctrines of the church, ordained priests of the universal church are not supposed to engage in sexual acts as this could amount to flouting their vows of chastity and celibacy.

“Of course it is against their vows and it is inimical to the growth of the church. Obviously, how do you ask such a question, if it’s true would you like your priest to engage in such acts? My dear friends know that this is sinful and the priests who are doing it know that it is sinful it’s not approved by the church”, he revealed.

According to him, stealing money, oppressing people especially the poor and committing murder considered as sins of malice are worse than sexual sin which is regarded as sin of weakness.

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Victims Take Apuron and Church to Court for ‘Libel and Slander’

GUAM
Pacific News Center

Written by Janela Carrera

The libel and slander lawsuit was filed this morning at the Superior Court of Guam.

Guam – The four alleged sex abuse victims of Archbishop Anthony Apuron have taken the first step in taking Apuron to court. They have filed a libel and slander lawsuit in the Superior Court of Guam.

Roy Quintanilla, Walter Denton, Roland Sondia and Doris Concepcion, on behalf of her son, Joseph Quinata are the named plaintiffs in the case. Quintanilla, Denton and Sondia say Apuron molested them in the 1970s at the Mt. Carmel Church in Agat. Concepcion accused Apuron of molesting her now deceased son.

The named defendants are Archbishop of Agana, a Corporation Sole–which is essentially the Archdiocese of Agana– and Apuron.

The four plaintiffs are seeking $500,00 each in general damages for a total of $2 million.

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Libel & Slander Lawsuit Filed Against Archbishop and Archdiocese

GUAM
KUAM

[with video]

[includes copy of the lawsuit]

Updated: Jul 01, 2016

By Krystal Paco

Walter Denton led a press conference at the Law Library in Hagatna this afternoon and announced that he, Roy Quintanilla, Roland Sondia, and Doris Concepcion have filed a libel and slander lawsuit against Anthony Sablan Apuron, the Archdiocese of Agana and DOE’s 1-50. The case was filed in the Superior Court of Guam. They are being represented by attorney David Lujan.

Walter Denton said they filed the lawsuit because they want the truth to come out to the public and to defend their honor and integrity. Denton said he wants Anthony Apuron and the Archdiocese of Agana and all those involved to take responsibility for their actions.

Denton added since the Archbishop and the Archdiocese have called every single survivor liars and instead of helping them they have avoided them and shunned them just as they did 40 years ago. He adds Archbishop Savio Hon Tai Fai has not attempted to meet with the victims. They have not reached out to them.

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Sex abuse accusers file suit against Apuron for slander, libel

GUAM
Pacific Daily News

Haidee V Eugenio, Pacific Daily News July 1, 2016

Four people who publicly accused Archbishop Anthony Apuron of sexually abusing altar boys in Agat in the 1970s filed a lawsuit against the archbishop Friday, at the Superior Court of Guam.

In the lawsuit, they are accusing the archbishop of libel and slander. The filing took place at 11:43 a.m.

The plaintiffs in the suit are Doris Concepcion, Roy T. Quintanilla, Walter G. Denton and Roland Paul L. Sondia. Their attorney is David Lujan.

The filing was announced Friday, during a press conference at the Guam Law Library near the court.

Slander is a false or malicious claim that may harm someone’s reputation. Libel is a defamatory statement made in the form of print or broadcast.

Quintanilla, Denton and Sondia are former altar boys who said Apuron molested them during sleepovers at the Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church rectory in Agat in the 1970s. Denton said Apuron raped him.

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