July 06, 2005

Court approves sale of Nfld. churches to pay victims of sexual abuse



ST. JOHN'S, Nfld. (CP) - More than 130 churches and other property belonging to a Roman Catholic diocese in Newfoundland could soon be up for sale after a court approved a financial settlement Tuesday for the victims of abusive priests.

The negotiated settlement between St. George's Diocese and the 40 victims is expected to raise $13 million for compensation. St. George's is believed to be the first Catholic diocese in Canada to seek bankruptcy protection as a result of sexual abuse claims.

The men involved will receive awards of between $75,000 to $1 million once the sale of properties is completed over the next 30 months.

Supreme Court Justice Alphonsus Faour approved the deal over the objections of two victims, saying the settlement was reasonable.

"An overwhelming majority of creditors support the proposal and the trustee supports the proposal," Faour said.

Posted by kshaw at July 6, 2005 09:25 AM