October 31, 2018
By Dave Altimari
The Diocese of Bridgeport said Wednesday it has paid $52.5 million to settle 156 allegations of priest sexual abuse since 1953 and that it is still paying eight priests who abused children.
It is the first time that the diocese has given an overview of how much the priest-abuse scandal has cost. Bishop Frank J. Caggiano had promised to give a financial accounting in a letter to parishioners in September.
The diocese has hired former state Superior Court Judge Robert Holzberg to report on how it has handled allegations of sexual abuse. His report is due in the spring.
The diocese has been criticized for keeping secret many of the claims against its priests and for protecting priests who faced multiple abuse claims. One of its most notorious priests, Laurence Brett, fled the country and hid for years, while others were moved to other churches in the diocese with impunity. Former Bishop Edward R. Egan once said in a deposition that sexual abuse by clergy “happen in such small numbers.”
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