May 20, 2005

Suspended Catholic priest is defrocked

Kansas City Star

ST. LOUIS — A Roman Catholic priest who opted to stay in prison while authorities challenge a dismissal of his convictions for sexual misconduct involving boys has been dismissed from the clergy.

Former Archbishop Justin Rigali had initiated the often-lengthy laicization proceedings against James Beine in October 2003 “for the welfare of all children and for the welfare of the Church,” the archdiocese said Thursday in a news release.

Beine, 63, was suspended from the priesthood in 1977 over allegations of sexual abuse. In the mid-1990s, the Archdiocese of St. Louis paid $110,000 to settle two lawsuits alleging that Beine had sexually abused boys more than three decades earlier.

“James Beine has credible allegations of sexual abuse of a minor against him dating back 30 years,” the archdiocese said.

Posted by kshaw at May 20, 2005 05:58 AM