April 21, 2006

Vermont Catholic Diocese Settles Priest Suit


Burlington, Vermont - April 19, 2006

A priest sex abuse trial in Burlington ended before it began today. The trial was called off after Vermont's Roman Catholic diocese agreed to settle a lawsuit with a man who claims he was abused by a priest more than 25 years ago.

This was just one of scores of sex abuse lawsuits across the country that have cost the church millions of dollars. The statewide Catholic Diocese of Burlington agreed to pay Michael Gay $965,000. The diocese also admits its responsibility for failing to take action against the perpetrator, Father Edward Paquette.

Lawyer Jerome O'Neill came armed with charts outlining the extent of the sexual abuse. Paquette was thrown out of the priesthood in 1978. But O'Neill says then-Bishop John Marshall knew about Paquette's background as a homosexual predator long before then.

Posted by kshaw at April 21, 2006 08:21 AM