Third priest accused of sexual abuse files lawsuit against Diocese of Corpus Christi

Corpus Christi Caller Times

June 20, 2019

By Eleanor Dearman

A third priest who was named in a list of clergy members who were “credibly accused” of sexual misconduct is suing Bishop Michael Mulvey and the Diocese of Corpus Christi.

Msgr. Jesús García Hernando is the latest to claim the diocese and bishop made a “false” statement in claiming he was “credibly accused” of sexually assaulting a minor.

“Defendants knew the statement was false and acted with reckless disregard for the truth,” the lawsuit states. “The publication of the statement was made with malice.”

While Hernando was indicted and sued in the 1990s over molestation allegations he was never convicted of a crime.

The lawsuit was filed on Hernando’s behalf by Corpus Christi Attorney Andrew Greenwell. Greenwell is also representing John Feminelli and Michael Heras in similar lawsuits that were filed earlier this year.

Feminelli is a retired priest. Heras was removed from the ministry in 2014. Hernando is still a priest in Spain, Greenwell said.

The three priests were among more than 20 Diocese of Corpus Christi clergy members whose names were included in the list. The diocese released those names in January, which coincided with the release of similar lists by dioceses across the nation.

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