Lawsuits Name Two Clerics Accused of Child Sexual Abuse, One for the First Time within Diocese
(Paterson, NJ) – Today, attorneys from the law firms of Jeff Anderson & Associates and Gianforcaro Law, on behalf of four survivors, filed four (4) lawsuits for childhood sexual abuse against the Diocese of Paterson. The cases, brought under the New Jersey Child Sexual Abuse Act / New Jersey Victims’ Rights Bill (S.477), identify two (2) child abusers formerly assigned within the Diocese.
“Whether they’ve chosen to use their name or file as a John Doe—which is a right every survivor has under the Child Sexual Abuse Act—each one of these survivors has taken a tremendously courageous step forward for themselves, for other survivors, and for the Children of New Jersey,” said attorney Jeff Anderson. “We are proud to stand with them in this moment of reckoning.”
According to attorney Greg Gianforcaro, the priest named today rank among the most prolific and heinous abusers of children in the state of New Jersey. “Today’s filings tell the stories four children harmed by two priests under the Diocese’s watch,” said Gianforcaro. “And this is far from not first time these two priests have been identified as perpetrators. Each has allegedly sexually abused many other children during their time within the Paterson Diocese.”
Among the complaints filed today, the perpetrators include:
- Father Jose Alonso (Alonzo), accused of sexually abusing a minor from approximately 1970 to 1971 at various locations within the Diocese of Paterson when the plaintiff was approximately 10 to11 years old. Fr. Alonso was convicted in 1988 of sexually abusing two boys and served a five-year sentence in New Jersey. He died in 2003. This is the first time Fr. Alonzo has been identified as a child sexual abuser in a New Jersey lawsuit despite being a prolific perpetrator of many children.
- Father John F. Dority, O.F.M., accused of sexually abusing three minors while assigned to St. Catherine of Bologna in Ringwood, NJ:
o Steve Mosto, from approximately 1975 to 1976 in both New York and New Jersey, when the plaintiff was approximately 13 to 14 years old.
o One from approximately 1975 to 1976 in both New York and New Jersey, when the plaintiff was approximately 15 to 16 years old.
o One in approximately 1976, when the plaintiff approximately 14 years old.
Dority worked as a priest from approximately 1967 to 1980. During that thirteen-year period, Dority spent six years as a missionary in Brazil and later worked as a priest in New York and New Jersey. He was arrested in Rhode Island in 2003 for sexual abuse of a 12-year-old and a 19-year-old. He was convicted in 2005 and served approximately two years of a twenty-year prison sentence. In addition to the three lawsuits filed today, Fr. Dority is the subject of one other lawsuit filed by Jeff Anderson & Associates in New York. He has also been the subject of abuse lawsuits filed in Massachusetts. He is believed to be deceased.
“The recent actions taken by New Jersey lawmakers to expand the statute of limitations laws for survivors of sexual abuse created a window of justice which now grants these survivors access to the civil justice system, instills accountability and will prevent children from becoming victims of sexual abuse in the future,” said Gianforcaro.