Albany Diocese Clears Upstate Catholic Priest of Abuse Charges

January 21, 2007

Albany, N.Y. -- A Greene County priest has been cleared of charges he sexually abused a 10-year-old boy in the late 1960s, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany announced Saturday.

The diocese said in a prepared statement that investigators found "no reasonable grounds to believe the allegation of sexual misconduct against the Rev. Jeremiah Nunan."

The Rev. Mark Jaufmann, now a priest in California, accused Nunan last year of sexually abusing him repeatedly when he was a young boy.

Nunan took a leave of absence as pastor of Sacred Heart Parish in Cairo and Our Lady of Knock Mission in East Durham after the allegations last February. On Saturday, diocese spokesman Ken Goldfarb said Nunan "remains a priest in good standing" and he has "resumed his priestly ministry" at the two churches.

The diocese said Jaufmann's complaint could not be substantiated after an investigation by a former FBI special agent working for the Independent Mediation Assistance Program, or IMAP, a body created by the diocese in 2004 to review clergy abuse charges.

Jaufmann filed a $2 million federal lawsuit against the IMAP program in November. He claimed the investigation made him feel like the abuse was his fault and the program was not truly independent of the diocese.

The Albany diocese covers 14 counties surrounding the Capital District.


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