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Clergy Abuse

Kansas City, MO: (Jan-16-08) An unidentified Kansas City-area man brought a lawsuit against the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph, alleging that Thomas Reardon and Thomas O'Brien sexually abused a non-catholic 16-year-old boy. Sources stated that over a dozen men have sued O'Brien and the diocese, and 14 have sued Reardon and the church. One has settled, and others are moving toward trial. The abuse allegedly began after a Catholic friend persuaded the boy to attend church at St. Elizabeth in Kansas City, and the suit said that one of the priests gave the boy money after sex acts. Lawsuits against both contain accusations of rape, sodomy and other sex acts. They allege a pattern of molestation that began in the early 1960s with O'Brien and continued with Reardon through the 1980s. The suit also stated that the priests used their positions to access and prey on youngsters, plying them with alcohol, groping them and sometimes paying them for sex.

As part of a settlement reached, the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph agreed to pay the man $45,000, to resolve the lawsuit. Records show that as of November 2007, priest abuse cases nationwide had cost the Roman Catholic Church at least $2.3 billion since 1950, including millions of dollars in settlements in recent months. [KANSAS CITY STAR: CLERGY ABUSE]

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Published on Jan-18-08


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