Chicago Archdiocese To Pay Over $12.6M in Sex Abuse Lawsuits

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The New York Sun

CHICAGO — The Archdiocese of Chicago said yesterday it had agreed to pay more than $12.6 million to settle lawsuits by 16 people who accused priests of sexual abuse, and it made public a candid deposition in the case by Cardinal Francis George.

“My hope is that these settlements will help the survivors and their families begin to heal and move forward,” Cardinal George said in a separate statement in which he also apologized for the abuse.

“We must continue to do everything in our power to ensure the safety of the children in our care,” he said.

Cardinal George’s public apology, as well as the private apologies he extended to each of the victims, was part of the settlement, an attorney who represented some of the victims, Jeff Anderson, said.

Fourteen of the cases involve sexual abuse by 10 different priests and two relate to the Reverend Daniel McCormack, who pleaded guilty last year to charges he abused five children.

The archdiocese has now settled four of the five lawsuits stemming from abuse by McCormack.

The archdiocese has paid $65 million to settle approximately 250 claims during the past 30 years, said its chancellor, Jimmy Lago. Mediation continues in about a couple of dozen other cases, he said.

The latest settlements were reached through a mediation process in which the cardinal himself gave a lengthy deposition.

In the deposition, Mr. George answered searching questions from an attorney for victims about why priests accused of sexual abuse were not removed.

The New York Sun

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