Jul 15, 2007

Now it's $660 million

Today's Associated Press story (click on this post's title) about Los Angeles Cardinal Roger Mahony's settlement of 508 clergy sex abuse cases puts the $$ total at $660 million.

Cardinal Mahony's settlement puts the national total at more than $2 billion. Clergy sodomy and other perversions are expensive.

This is in the AP story:

"The settlement will not affect the archdiocese's core ministry, Mahony said, but the church will have to sell buildings, use some of its invested funds and borrow money. The archdiocese will not sell any parish property, he said."

Last December the Archdiocese of Los Angeles paid $60 million to settle 45 cases that insurance did not cover.

The news story adds this:

"Under the latest deal, the archdiocese will pay $250 million, insurance carriers will pay a combined $227 million and several religious orders will chip in $60 million. The remaining $123 million will come from litigation with religious orders that chose not to participate in the deal, with the archdiocese guaranteeing resolution of those 80 to 100 cases within five years, [Archdiocesan lawyer] Hennigan said. The archdiocese is released from liability in those claims, [Archdiocesan spokesman] Tamberg said."

And this: "Plaintiffs' attorneys can expect to receive as much as 40 percent of the settlement money — or $264 million — for their work."

The Cardinal has a statement at the Archdiocesan website http://www.la-archdiocese.com/

Some pastors have told their flocks in recent years that they can avoid giving money to the Archdiocese downtown and still fulfill their obligation to support their local parish -- by earmarking their donations to a restricted fund in their parish, if the parish has one or more of them. Building funds and sanctuary-upkeep funds are typical such restricted funds.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

There are a number of things that make me sick in this whole sordid mess: the abuse itself; the way cases were mishandled by bishops, religious superiors, psychologists, and victms' familes; the anti-Catholicism of many alleged victims and members of the Survivors Network of Those Abused by Priests (SNAP); but what really sticks in my craw is that the law in California suspending the statute of limitations, allowing all the lawsuits we see being settled, is unconstitutional.

A similar law allowing the suspension of the statute of limitations in criminal cases was found to be unconstitutional by the U.S. Supreme Court. The court ruled that the California statute amounted to an ex post facto law.

There is no reason to believe that a similar fate does not await the law in civil cases. The tragedy is that the hundreds of millions we read about in these settlements will not be retrievable when the U.S Supreme Court finally gets to weigh in on the matter.

10:54 PM  

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