2012 May

May 26, 2012: Former Damien teacher and chaplain accused of sex assault

An alleged sex assault involving a former Honolulu priest and a Damien Memorial School student has surfaced, nearly 30 years later.A new state law allows adults who claim they were molested as children to take legal action even after the statute of limitations has lapsed.The lawsuit that was filed yesterday claims the then 13-year-old boy was sexually assaulted by a former Damien chaplain. And it’s not the first time the former priest has been accused of a sex crime.

May 21, 2012: Verdict Reached in Green Bay Diocese Trial

A jury finds the Catholic Diocese of Green Bay liable in a civil trial accusing it of fraud.

Todd and Troy Merryfield filed the civil suit against the Diocese after
evidence of other victims came out during John Patrick Feeney’s criminal
trial. An Outagamie County Judge awarded Todd Merryfield $225,000 and
Troy $475,000 in court on Monday.

The case was centered around former priest John Patric Feeney who was
convicted in 2004 of sexually assaulting the brothers in the 1970s.

Both sides issued passionate pleas to the jury.

May 16, 2012: Merryfields testify in diocese fraud trial

Two brothers abused by a former priest with the Green Bay Diocese testified in their civil trial Wednesday. Todd and Troy Merryfield are suing the diocese for fraud. They claim the diocese knew, before they were abused, that former priest John Feeney had a history of inappropriate sexual contact with children. There was plenty of emotion shown by both brothers on the stand Wednesday as they told the jury about what happened to them at the hands of John Feeney in 1978 and how it has changed their lives still to this day. “He lifted up my pajama shirt, started rubbing m…

May 15, 2012: Opening statements under way in priest abuse fraud trial

With testimony underway, attorneys for the Merryfields laid the foundation for their case. “We’ll show the diocese knew he had impulse control and the diocese knew he was reckless in not caring whether or not he was a molester,” said Jeff Anderson, attorney for Todd Merryfield. A claim the diocese denies. “These claims are false, untrue and we will show you why,” said Pat Brennan, attorney for the Green Bay Diocese.

May 14, 2012: Civil case against Green Bay diocese heads to trial

APPLETON — A former Fox Valley priest spent nearly eight years in prison for the 1978 sexual assaults of two young parishioners, but his victims say justice hasn’t been fully served.A civil lawsuit that slowly built in Outagamie County’s court system for more than four years heads to trial today as brothers Todd and Troy Merryfield, formerly of Freedom, seek unspecified damages from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Green Bay based on their childhood assaults.Over the course of the next two weeks, a jury will determine whether the diocese is civilly responsible based on allegations it knew about s…

May 09, 2012: Rev. Raju Policetti, One Of 32 Catholic Priests Who Have Fled Country To Avoid Prosecution

At least 32 Roman Catholic priests have fled the country to avoid prosecution since 1985 and only five have returned to face trial, reports the Chicago Tribune.Most of the priests that left were wanted for such serious accusations as alleged sexual abuse or assault charges, yet the courts have proven ineffective at extraditing the clerics in a timely matter. At times the process of extradition has taken so long that prosecutions have dropped the case entirely. (Read The Full Story In The Chicago Tribute)One glaring example is the case of Rev. Raju Policetti, a priest who fled to India in 2002 …