Clergy sex abuse suits could bankrupt San Diego diocese
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SAN DIEGO — The Roman Catholic Diocese of San Diego stated Friday it could declare chapter within the coming months because it faces “staggering” authorized prices in coping with some 400 lawsuits alleging monks and others sexually abused kids.
In a letter that was anticipated to be shared with parishioners this weekend, Bishop Robert McElroy stated the circumstances had been filed after California lifted a statute of limitations on childhood sexual abuse claims.
Meeting Invoice 218, which was signed into legislation in 2019, permits alleged victims to sue up till age 40. Additionally, starting in 2020, it opened a three-year window for submitting lawsuits with out age limitations.
Many of the alleged abuse cited within the fits passed off 50 to 75 years in the past, and the earliest declare dates to 1945, Kevin Eckery, communications director for the diocese, stated at a Friday information convention, KNSD-TV reported.
Eckery predicted that it will price the diocese $550 million to settle the circumstances, none of which have gone to trial.
In his letter, the bishop stated not one of the fits contain allegations towards any at present serving priest.
“This displays the truth that the Church has taken huge steps to root out the sexual abuse of minors in its life and to advertise the safety of minors,” McElroy wrote.
Even so, the diocese is dealing with “staggering” authorized prices and most of its belongings had been used to settle earlier allegations with a $198 million payout in 2007, McElroy wrote.
“Even with insurance coverage, the diocese will be unable to pay out related sums now,” the letter stated. “This problem is compounded by the truth that a invoice has now been launched into the Legislature that seeks to remove the statute of limitations fully, leaving the diocese susceptible to potential lawsuits endlessly.”
Chapter would “present a pathway” for the diocese to compensate sexual abuse victims whereas persevering with to run its ministries, the bishop stated.
The diocese has greater than 100 energetic monks and covers San Diego and Imperial counties, an space of greater than 8,800 sq. miles with a Catholic inhabitants of practically 1.4 million, based on its web site.