Catholic Church


With New York Abuse Claim Window Closed, Victims Face Hurdles in Bankruptcy Court

Thousands of New Yorkers who said they were sexually abused as children filed lawsuits ahead of a state deadline last week. For many, their efforts to seek redress and confront abusers will now run through bankruptcy court, where the institutions they sued took refuge from litigation. Since New York’s Child Victims Act in 2019 opened the door for lawsuits over sexual abuse suffered years or decades ago, roughly 9,000 people have filed suits in the state against individuals and institutions, according to Child USA, a nonprofit childhood abuse research and advocacy ...

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‘Flood’ of new suits as Child Victims Act look-back window set to close

In the two years leading up to Aug. 4, survivors of child sexual abuse filed more than 8,263 civil suits in New York against their alleged abusers and the institutions that employed them.  Seven days later, that total jumped by nearly 1,000 to 9,241, according to data from the state’s Office of Court Administration.  The dramatic rise in cases is coming ahead of the end of a so-called “look-back,” or revival window for claims of child sexual abuse written into law with the Child Victims Act of 2019. The law changed the statute of limitations for such ...

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Sex abuse victims’ lawsuits continue to pour in as NY’s Child Victims Act nears its deadline to file

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The window to file lawsuits under New York State’s Child Victims Act will come to a close later this month, but until a few weeks ago, David Ferrick didn’t know that the law enabling victims of sexual assault to sue even existed. Ferrick, 52, learned about it last month in Fresno, California — thousands of miles away from his childhood home in Brooklyn, where he attended St. Cecilia’s Roman Catholic Church in Greenpoint and where he says in a newly filed lawsuit that a priest there molested him when he was just a 10-year-old altar boy. The aim of the law, ...

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Bishop acknowledges child predators were sent for ‘treatment’

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany engaged in a decades-long cover-up of chronic child sexual abuse committed by its priests by employing practices described in a recent statement from former Bishop Howard J. Hubbard, who ran the diocese from 1977 to 2014. Hubbard’s statement, issued through his attorney in response to a series of questions from the Times Union, confirmed that the diocese shielded priests and others facing sexual abuse allegations — sending them into private treatment programs rather than contacting law enforcement officials or alerting ...

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He alleges sex abuse by prominent Staten Island priest ‘robbed’ him of childhood, explains why he went public with lawsuit

A former Staten Islander alleges that he was sexually abused for several years beginning when he was a teen in the 1990s by a Roman Catholic priest who served for decades on Staten Island. Ryan Barry, now a husband and father who lives in Pennsylvania, said in a lawsuit and a recent interview with the Advance/SILive.com that he was preyed upon by the Rev. James Garisto, a former pastor, teacher and school administrator in our borough. “He robbed me of pretty much my whole childhood and my teenage years,” Barry said of Father Garisto. Barry sued the Archdioc...

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Man alleges Knights of Columbus youth basketball coach abused him as child

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A man claims a Knights of Columbus member who worked as a youth basketball coach for the organization sexually abused him as a child in the Bronx. The Knights of Columbus has 1.9 million members across the U.S. It was initially formed to help those in need as a Catholic fraternal benefit society. Jeffrey Davis claims Kenneth McLaughlin abused him as a boy and claims the organization did not stop or prevent the abuse from happening. Ken McLaughlin joined Boyd Council #326 Knights of Columbus in April 1946 and became involved with that organization’s youth ...

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Jennifer Freeman’s Miami Herald Op-Ed

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Are you a former New Yorker? Time’s almost up for childhood sex-abuse survivors to seek justice We all know it — every year, thousands of New Yorkers move to Florida for its warm weather and leisurely lifestyle. Some stay — I’m a former New Yorker delighted to be living in the Sunshine State for the past three years. The pandemic has accelerated this trend, with thousands more choosing Florida as a new home. Yet most former New Yorkers have no idea that our legal rights were dramatically expanded recently. In 2019, New York State enacted ...

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New York’s Catholic church leaders control billions outside the reach of abuse survivors

The Catholic bishops of New York sold a lucrative insurance business they controlled and stored the proceeds in a foundation they also administer, keeping billions out of the reach of survivors of childhood sexual abuse. The move occurred in 2018, with the church selling its Fidelis Care insurance company and moving $4.3 billion of the proceeds into the new Mother Cabrini Health Foundation. At the same time, the Child Victims Act in New York was gaining momentum in the Legislature, a measure that the church had lobbied against for more than a ...

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2 new suits allege sex abuse by brother at Farrell in 1970s; ‘I walked into a trap,’ man says

STATEN ISLAND, N.Y. — A religious brother sexually abused two men more than 40 years ago when they were students at Monsignor Farrell High School in Oakwood, lawsuits allege. Brother Salvatore Anthony Ferro is named in two separate litigations filed recently under the New York State Child Victims Act against the Archdiocese of New York, Monsignor Farrell High School, and various entities of the Congregation of Christian Brothers. Attorney Michael Pfau said his law firm, Pfau Cochran Vertetis Amala PLLC, represents about 75 victims of abuse in the Archdiocese of New ...

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Diocese of Rockville Centre Files For Bankruptcy, Citing Hundreds of Sex Abuse Lawsuits

The Diocese of Rockville Centre filed for bankruptcy Thursday after more than 200 lawsuits were filed alleging Catholic priests on Long Island sexually abused victims over the years. The plaintiffs’ attorneys said the bankruptcy filing can limit survivors’ ability to unearth names of accused priests, expose leaders who engaged in coverups, and, as part of the Chapter 11 process, the bankruptcy court will set a claims bar date, which will be the deadline for sexual abuse survivors to file a claim in bankruptcy court or risk losing their legal rights. But it also ...

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