Million-Dollar Settlements

By Chris Knap
Orange County Register
May 17, 2005

Since 2001, 23 priests and laypeople working for the Diocese of Orange have cost the church $1 million or more each in settlements of sexual- abuse allegations. The bulk of the money was paid in a record $100.million settlement with 90 plaintiffs earlier this year. Most cases settled prior to 2001 were confidential; there is no public record of the amounts. Many of those accused continue to deny any wrongdoing.

Name Church title 2005 settlements Total public settlements
Siegfried Widera Priest $17,726,400 $17,726,400
Michael Harris Priest, monsignor, principal $12,420,000* $17,620,000
Eleuterio Ramos Priest $16,634,371 $16,634,371
Andrew Christian Andersen Priest $4,620,000 $4,620,000
Santino Casimano Priest $4,200,000 $4,200,000
John Kenney Priest $4,200,000 $4,200,000
Gregory Atherton Servite brother $4,169,325 $4,169,325
Denis Lyons Priest $4,090,000 $4,090,000
Robert Richardson Teacher, track coach $4,000,000 $4,000,000
John Lord Priest $3,739,842 $3,739,842
Richard Coughlin Priest $3,119,700 $3,119,700
Franklin Buckman Priest $1,959,700 $1,959,700
Thomas Hodgman Teacher, choir master $1,600,000 $1,600,000
Sofronio Aranda Priest $1,550,000 $1,550,000
Tim Adams Choir director,youth leader $1,500,000 $1,500,000
Edito Dalmacio Amora Priest $1,420,000 $1,420,000
John Merino School administrator $1,420,000* $1,420,000
Donald Stevens School caretaker $1,200,000 $1,200,000
John Lenihan Priest $0 $1,200,000
Peter Magana Priest $1,019,400 $1,019,400
Daniel Murray Monsignor $513,400* $1,013,400
William McKnight Eucharistic minister $1,000,000* $1,000,000
Michael Pecharich Priest $1,000,000 $1,000,000
*Number includes at least one case in which more than one individual was accused of abuse. Since no division of damages was filed with the court, the entire settlement is counted here in the total of each man accused.
Sources: Los Angeles Superior Court documents; plaintiffs’ attorneys; Register reports.
Reporting by: Chris Knap, The Register

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