January 10, 2006

Ottawa church sues pastor who committed sex crime

The Globe and Mail


Tuesday, January 10, 2006 Page A2

In what lawyers are calling an unusual legal tactic, an Ottawa church is suing its former youth pastor, a convicted sex offender.

The Calvin Christian Reformed Church, along with its insurance company, is seeking $150,000 from Herbert de Ruyter, who recently pleaded guilty to sexually exploiting a member of the congregation when she was a teenager.

Legal experts say the lawsuit is a new offensive for churches that have been haunted by sex scandals and are in financial ruin because of multimillion-dollar settlements with victims.

"I've never seen that happen in the United States in all my research," said Mitchell Garabedian, a Boston lawyer who represents about 300 people who claim they were sexually abused by Catholic priests across Massachusetts.

Posted by kshaw at January 10, 2006 08:36 AM