Montreal Religious Order Faces Potential Sex Abuse Class Action Lawsuit

By Shuyee Lee
September 1, 2010

A request for a class action lawsuit has been filed alleging sexual abuse at the hands of priests at the former Montreal Institute of the Deaf and the Mute.

Serge D'arcy wants to sue the Institut et la Congregation des Clercs de Saint-Viateur de Montreal, the religious order which was running the institution he was attending between 1964 and 1972. The lawsuit targets alleged acts between 1967 and 1982. D'arcy was between 9 and 15 at the time. He alleges that it started a year after he arrived at the institute, accusing priests who worked and taught there.

The lawsuit is claiming $600,000 in damages for D'arcy but the global amount could go up to millions, because the lawsuit is claiming $100,000 in moral damages for each of the alleged victims, plus compensation. Serge D'arcy's lawyer Pierre Boivin says there are many alleged victims.

The lawsuit details acts of alleged fellatio, sexual touching and masturbation on little deaf and mute boys.

D'arcy says it caused him feelings of fear, shame and anguish. He says it feels like he's been keeping a deep secret out of fear that he'd be judged and he didn't know how to complain or to whom.

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