Attack on sex lawsuits rejected

first_img AD Quality Auto 360p 720p 1080p Top articles1/5READ MORERose Parade grand marshal Rita Moreno talks New Year’s Day outfit and ‘West Side Story’ remake The law in question lifted for one year the statute of limitations for filing civil lawsuits alleging sexual abuse that may have taken place decades ago. It has resulted in hundreds of priest abuse lawsuits throughout California. But those lawsuits could be thrown out without any compensation to alleged victims if an appellate court were to strike down the statute that authorizes the cases. Beverly Hills attorney Raymond P. Boucher, who represents alleged abuse victims, said the Los Angeles Archdiocese is using that threat to try to get plaintiffs to settle their claims for lower amounts. Hennigan said Mahony is committed to settling the claims even though he and all other bishops in California support the San Diego diocese’s challenge to the law. “We sincerely hope that all of these cases are settled before we get the final answer to this important question,” he said. More than 560 abuse claims are pending against the Los Angeles Archdiocese and 153 are pending against the San Diego diocese. The Orange County diocese settled claims by 87 victims for $100 million.160Want local news?Sign up for the Localist and stay informed Something went wrong. Please try again.subscribeCongratulations! You’re all set! SAN DIEGO – A federal judge has rejected the Roman Catholic Church’s effort to strike down a state law that allows lawsuits by people who claim they were abused by priests long ago. The San Diego diocese had argued that the 2002 law illegally interfered with its religious practices. “The failure to supervise or negligent hiring of a person that commits sexual assault does not implicate or affect any religious belief, opinion or practice,” U.S. District Court Judge William Q. Hayes wrote in a ruling made public Thursday. Attorney J. Michael Hennigan, who represents the San Diego diocese and Los Angeles Cardinal Roger M. Mahony, said the church is “strongly considering an appeal.”last_img read more