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Local, national Boy Scouts sued over ex-leader’s alleged sexual abuse

A lawsuit has been filed against Boy Scouts of America and Heart of Ohio Council in Richland County Common Pleas Court, accusing the organizations of failing to provide a safe environment and negligence, attorneys said in a news release.

Although the complaint does not yet appear in online court records, attorneys say the lawsuit was filed Friday on behalf of an Ohio boy who says he was sexually exploited by Thomas Close, a former scout leader who was sentenced last month to 30 years in federal prison for sexually exploiting children, as well as receiving and distributing child pornography.

The lawsuit claims Boy Scouts of America (BSA) failed to adequately supervise Close, and that BSA has a “longstanding” problem with scout leaders sexually abusing children, producing and possessing child pornography. 

In Richland County, the boy is being represented by Lebanon attorney Konrad Kircher, with assistance from Paul Mones, of California, and James R. Marsh, of New York. 

My client and his family will hold the Boy Scouts of America accountable for the injuries he suffered,” Kircher said in a statement. “The safety of young innocent boys must be a priority for the Boy Scouts of America.”

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