March 16, 2005

Dioceses to seek dismissals


By Tony LaRussa
Wednesday, March 16, 2005

The Pittsburgh Catholic Diocese will ask an Allegheny County judge to dismiss 35 lawsuits alleging abuse by its priests, citing a state appeals court ruling that plaintiffs in other suits waited too long to file their complaints.

A three-judge panel of the state Superior Court ruled Monday that alleged victims of sexual abuse by priests in the Archdiocese of Philadelphia waited too long to file their lawsuits. The archdiocese was protected by Pennsylvania's statute of limitations, which typically requires lawsuits be filed within two years, the decision states.

The Superior Court's ruling confirms "that the church is entitled to the same justice and the same rule of law as any other entity in Pennsylvania," the Pittsburgh Diocese said in a statement.

The dioceses in Greensburg and Altoona-Johnstown also will seek to have suits against them dismissed, officials there said.

Posted by kshaw at March 16, 2005 05:53 AM