Victims of alleged sexual abuse by clergy in the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis have filed more than 400 claims against the archdiocese in federal bankruptcy court, according to attorneys for victims and the archdiocese. The claims were filed by Monday, the deadline imposed by the bankruptcy court.
Some attorneys and victims groups are reacting differently to a bankruptcy filing by Minnesota’s largest Catholic archdiocese. Mike Finnegan is an attorney for a law firm that repeatedly sued the St. Paul-Minneapolis archdiocese for abuse victims. His firm is now working with it on child protection issues. Finnegan says the filing won’t stop scrutiny.
There are new allegations that the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis destroyed as many as five suspected child porn videos — and that the Vatican knew what happened. This latest allegation involving the Twin Cities Catholic Church comes as a direct result of a landmark agreement between the church and victims. The agreement has resulted in more names of priests, suspected of sexual abuse against a minor, being released.
An attorney for victims of sexual abuse by priests says Archbishop John Nienstedt’s plan to release the names of some accused priests isn’t enough.
Another victim came forward on Tuesday, alleging she was sexually abused by a Twin Cities Catholic clergy member. St. Paul attorneys Jeff Anderson and Mike Finnegan announced a new lawsuit, claiming that the Rev. Robert Thurner sexually abused the woman, identified as Jane Doe 23, when she was a child in the 1984-85 school year.