Victims" Rights Attorney Releases Extensive List of NY Archdiocese Clerics Accused of Sex Abuse

NBC 4 News
August 1, 2019

The Archdiocese of New York on Friday released a list of 120 priests and deacons that it said had been credibly accused of sexual abuse or the possession of pornography, or whose behavior had led to compensation claims being paid. Checkey Beckford reports.

The names of 310 clerics in the Archdiocese of New York who have been accused of sexual misconduct were released Thursday by a victims' rights attorney at a press conference in Manhattan -- a more extensive list than the one previously released by the Archdiocese.

Though the Archdiocese of New York released its own list of 120 priests and deacons that it said had been credibly accused of sexual abuse or the possession of pornography, or whose behavior had led to compensation claims being paid in April, the victims' rights attorney said it compiled a more extensive, yet "incomplete" list of the accused witht he help of individuals across the country.

Survivors and victims' advocates joined the firm Jeff Anderson & Associates in releasing the report on sexual abuse in the Archdiocese and calling Archbishop Timothy Dolan and religious orders to fully disclose the accused who have worked in the Archdiocese.

"It's time to release more information about the real peril that does exist and has existed in the Archdiocese of New York and the failure of this cardinal and his predecessors to reveal the full truth," lawyer Jeff Anderson said.

Additionally, survivors and advocates discussed the New York Child Victims Act, which opens a one-year “window” starting Aug. 14 for survivors of child sexual abuse to take legal action against the perpetrator and the institution that may have protected the perpetrator, regardless of when the abuse occurred.

Anderson has also been involved in demanding the Boys Scouts of America the full release of thousands of names of alleged sexual offenders in what has been known as the organization's "perversion" files.

The Archdiocese's list, released in the spring, spans decades, with most of those accused ordained before 1969 and most of the alleged abuse occurring in the 1970s and 1980s. The vast majority of those on the list are dead.

None of the priests on the list were ordained since the 2002 adoption of a charter on protecting children, the archdiocese said. (It did note that there were two credible allegations of abuse occurring after 2002, though.)

Of the 120 on the list, many were both removed from ministry and defrocked.

Though most on the list were priests, it also includes a defrocked cardinal, two bishops and five deacons.

The release by New York officials follows a similar, larger release by church officials in New Jersey in February. More than two dozen states have now released list of accused abuser priests.

But the New York list lacks some of the detail made public by other states; it does not, for example, list where each priest worked and when.

"The cardinal and the Archdiocese continue to hide not only the names, not only the identities, not only the histories, but their own role in concealing in giving safe harbor to what we've identified as 310 predator priest perpetrators who have worked in their archdiocese," Anderson said, adding that his list also includes "religious order priests," which are not included in the Archdiocese's list.

Bridie Farrell, a survivor of abuse and co-founder of NY Loves Kids, an organization that aims to create a safer New York by speaking out about child sexual abuse, was also present at the press conference and addressed those in attendance saying that the upcoming New York Child Victims Act law is not one that aims to go against any particular organization or religion, but is simply an avenue to help survivors obtain justice against their perpetrators.

In a statement to NBC 4 New York, Joseph Zwilling, spokesman for the Archdiocese of New York, said: “The Archdiocese of New York has released the names of every clergyman -- bishop, priest, and deacon -- of the archdiocese who has had a credible and substantiated allegation against them. We have also released the names of those clergyman whose claim could not be substantiated – because they were deceased – but compensation was paid as a result of the decision by the administrators of the Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program. Both lists continue to be posted on our website. We encourage anyone with an allegation of sexual abuse to come forward, no matter where that abuse took place, to report their allegation to law enforcement. If their allegation concerns a bishop, priest, or deacon of the archdiocese, we would encourage them to contact our Victim’s Assistance Coordinator so that we might offer our pastoral assistance as well.”








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