Tag: Archdiocese of New York

Father Leo Mojecki – Archdiocese of New York

Father Leo Mojecki 

Archdiocese of New York

Leo Mojecki Horowitz Law

Ordained: Unknown 

Died: 1985

Assigned as follows:

  • 1960s St. Sylvester’s R.C. Church (Concord, NY)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Leo Mojecki:

According to media reports, in late April 2021, a lawsuit was filed against a former Erie County priest, Father Leo Mojecki, and the Archdiocese of New York for the alleged drugging and repeated sexual assault of an altar boy in the 1960s. The lawsuit alleges that Father Mojecki repeatedly raped the plaintiff from 1964 to 1966 while he was attending the fourth to sixth grades at St. Sylvester School. The victim was approximately 9 to 11 years old at the time of the abuse. 

According to the lawsuit, Fr. Mojecki regularly drugged the plaintiff and then raped the boy in his sleep. Most of the incidents occurred in the parish’s rectory, while he wore his official priest garb. He allegedly fondled the child’s genitals, rubbed his own genitals in front of the boy, kissed him, and forced him to serve mass as an altar boy with only underwear on underneath his acolyte robes. 

The suit claimed that Fr. Mojecki had groomed the plaintiff. “Father Mojecki would regularly keep the plaintiff late at church; offer to drive plaintiff home; socialize with plaintiff’s parents; and asked plaintiff to help him with tasks,” the suit stated. The boy told his teacher about the sexual abuse, but no action was taken.

The lawsuit also alleges that Reverend Thomas Burke and Monsignor John Lennon, then the parish pastor, knew that the victim spent nights in the rectory with Father Mojecki. Despite this fact, they continued providing the priest access to commit the sexual assaults against the boy. Monsignor John Lennon died in 1982, Father Burke died in 1984 and Father Mojecki died in 1985.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New York, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Call us at (888) 283-9922 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Thomas Devery – Archdiocese of New York

Father Thomas Devery

Archdiocese of New York

Thomas Devery Horowitz Law

Assignment History:

  • Our Lady of Pity R.C. Church (Bulls Head, NY)
  • 2014-2021: Our Lady Star of the Sea (Staten Island, NY)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father Thomas Devery:

In August 2019, a lawsuit was filed in the state Supreme Court in Manhattan against the Archdiocese of New York, alleging that Father Thomas Devery sexually abused an altar boy at St. Elizabeth Ann Seton Church in Shrub Oak, Westchester County, in 1984. According to the suit, the boy was 15-years-old when Devery engaged in unpermitted sexual contact with him.

In March 2021, the advocacy group, SNAP, is calling upon the Archbishop of New York to remove Devery from ministry and parochial vicar at Our Lady Star of the Sea R.C.  The Archdiocese of New York has not informed parishioners about the allegations, and he remains in active ministry.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today. 

Judge Orders Secret New York Archdiocese Files Must Be Turned Over to Victims’ Attorneys

New York Archdiocese Horowitz Law

The Court’s ruling pertains to 21 lawsuits filed against the Archdiocese and three other defendants for the sexual abuse of kids by Edwin “Ted” Gaynor, a former teacher and coach at several local grammar schools.

This week, a Westchester County judge ordered the Archdiocese of New York and three of its Catholic grammar schools to turn over documents requested by attorneys for the alleged victims of Edwin “Ted” Gaynor.  

At least 21 people have accused Gaynor of sexually abusing them as children in lawsuits filed since the Child Victims Act statute of limitations window opened in 2019.  The plaintiffs say they were abused between the 1950s and the 1980s.  Gaynor worked as a teacher and coach at multiple Catholic schools throughout the Archdiocese of New York, including Immaculate Heart of Mary (Scarsdale), St. Bernard (White Plains), and Holy Rosary (Hawthorne).  

The latest court ruling comes in response to the plaintiffs’ routine requests for documents pertaining to Gaynor’s history in the Archdiocese of New York, and, more specifically, what it and the other defendants may have known about the likelihood that he might sexually abuse the kids he encountered through work. The Archdiocese and the other defendants fought to keep the documents secret, arguing there is no relevant evidence in their files.   

This part of a court case is often referred to as the “discovery” phase of a lawsuit, during which the attorneys for both sides obtain information and evidence relating to the case.  In this case, the documents are important to establishing the defendants’ negligence in the employment and supervision of Gaynor and the children entrusted to his care.  Lawyers for the Archdiocese of New York claim that Gaynor was solely responsible for the four decades of abuse, and that Archdiocese officials were unaware of any abuse until the lawsuits were filed.  These documents are important to plaintiffs’ attorneys because they help show what the Archdiocese knew, or should have known, about the dangers (or, conversely, what officials did not know). 

This ruling represents a victory for Gaynors’ accusers, who not only require the documents to proceed with their lawsuits, but who may also be able to shed light on any of the Archdiocese’s efforts to conceal abuse allegations and endanger the general public through secrecy.  This was a battle well-fought and a well-deserved victory for survivors.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

 

Fr. Basil Akut – Archdiocese of New York

Father Basil Akut

Archdiocese of New York

Basil Akut Horowitz Law

Assignment History:

  • Our Lady Star of the Sea (Staten Island, NY)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father Basil Akut:

In March 2021, another Staten Island priest was accused of sexual abuse in a lawsuit filed in the state Supreme Court in Manhattan against New York’s Archdiocese. According to media reports, in 2015, Fr. Basil Akut began weekly counseling to a recently divorced woman when working at Our Lady Star of the Sea Church. Over four years, Akut showered the woman with compliments, text, and calls and would spend “an inordinate amount of time” with her, the court documents claim.

In January of 2018 things escalated when Akut confessed he was in love with the woman. Akut told her that he loved her and fantasized about her sexually, the suit alleges. It stated that Akut told the victim he thinks about her naked and wanted to touch and kiss her.

In mid-October 2018, during one of their weekly counseling sessions, Akut forced a kiss on her while pushing her against a counter, the court documents claim. On another occasion, the victim took a sleeping pill to help with her insomnia, and Akut called her to come to the rectory. When she did, Akut groped her, kissed her, and sexually abused her. The lawsuit says Akut held the victim’s hands behind her back and raped her. Since the abuse, the victim suffers from vivid nightmares, guilt, shame, and embarrassment, the suit claims.

In March 2021, the advocacy group, SNAP, is calling upon the Archbishop of New York to remove Akut from ministry at Our Lady Star of the Sea R.C.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Mr. Rudy Tremaroli – Archdiocese of New York

Mr. Rudy Tremaroli

Archdiocese of New York/Lay Teacher

Rudy Tremaroli Horowitz Law

Ordained: N/A

Died: 1992

Assignment History:

  • 1965-1992: Our Lady of Mount Carmel (Bronx, NY)

Summary of Abuse Allegations Against Mr. Rudy Tremaroli:

In late 2019, five former students at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church and School in the Bronx filed lawsuits against the school and the Archdiocese of New York, claiming they were sexually abused by their former basketball coach, Rudy Tremaroli.

One of the victims that filed is a Connecticut state senator. He claims that he was sexually assaulted by Tremaroli in the 1980s when he was 9 to 12 years old. The lawsuit states that Tremaroli, who died in 1992, received multiple reports that he abused and molested hundreds of boys while working at a Catholic community center before leaders moved him to work exclusively at the school.

Mr. Tremaroli was hired as a janitor at Our Lady of Mount Carmel in the 1960s, then later ran a youth program, summer camp, and community center, where he hosted movie nights. Tremaroli became the assistant basketball coach and facilities manager for Our Lady of Mount Carmel in the 1970s, using his private office to isolate and abuse kids, the suits say. Allegedly. Tremaroli would befriend boys, talk to them about girls and teach them how to masturbate. The suits also claim that Tremaroli amassed a large collection of nude photographs of his victims over the years.

Tremaroli’s alleged abuse stretched into the early 1990s, and neither school officials nor the Archdiocese of New York did anything about it. Tremaroli died in 1992.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Leo Courcy Jr. – Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee

Father Leo Courcy Jr.

Archdiocese of New York

Leo J Courcy Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1962

Leaves of Absence/Sick Leave: 1965-1966, 1979-1980

Inpatient Evaluation/Treatment: 1967-1970

Removed: 1993

Laicized: 2009 

Assigned as follows:

  • 1962 – 1965: St. Anthony (Burlington, VT)
  • 1965 -1967: Absent from Burlington Diocese on “Sick Leave”
  • 1966Don Bosco Home (Burlington, VT)
  • 1966St. Francis Xavier (Winooski, VT) 
  • 1966: St. Mark (Burlington, VT)
  • 1967 – 1970: Servants of the Paraclete (Santa Fe, NM) (inpatient treatment)
  • 1967 – 1969Holy Ghost (Albuquerque, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1968 – 1969St. Pius X High School (Albuquerque, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1969 – 1970St. Francis Xavier (Clayton, NM)  (during treatment)
  • 1970: Unidentified parish(Amarillo, Texas) (during treatment)
  • 1969/1970: St. Anthony (Questa, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1970: Clayton High School (Clayton, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1971: St. John Vianney (South Burlington, VT) 
  • 1971: St. Mary (Cambridge / Johnson, VT)
  • 1971: St. George (Ottawa, ONT Canada)
  • 1971-1979: On Duty Outside Burlington Diocese (whereabouts unclear)
  • 1973-1974: Ottawa Archdiocese, Director of Education
  • 1974: Our Lady of Visitation (South Gloucester, ONT Canada)
  • 1975: Bayonne, NJ (per his father’s obituary)
  • 1977: St. Mary of the Assumption (Deal, NJ)
  • 1977-1979: Various assignments in Pensacola, Florida
  • 1978-1979: Pensacola Catholic High School (Pensacola, FL)
  • 1979-1980: Leave of Absence
  • 1979: Chaplain, unknown Queens, NY High School
  • 1980-1984: On Duty Outside Burlington Diocese (whereabouts unclear)
  • 1984-1985: St. Frances de Chantal (Bronx, New York)
  • 1986-1989: On Duty Outside Burlington Diocese (whereabouts unclear)
  • 1988-1990: New York Archdiocese Parish Mission Team (Suffern, NY)
  • 1991-1992: St. Mary (Fishkill, NY)
  • 1992-1993: St. Augustine (New York, NY)
  • 1993-1997: Listed in Official Catholic Directory as “On Duty Outside Diocese”

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Leo Courcy Jr.:

The saga of Fr. Leo Courcy is a complicated one and, after an extended investigation, we have done our best to reconstruct what we believe is his trial of abuse across America.  You may notice some assignments that are not listed and that is likely because there are big gaps in the publicly available information, particularly in the 1970s. For example, Courcy appears in a 1970 high school yearbook in New Mexico and then again in a 1978 yearbook in Pensacola, Florida.  His whereabouts during that time are not entirely clear but he may have worked at other parishes and high schools in Canada or New Jersey. It is documented that he served in the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee in the late 1970s in between his New Jersey and New York assignments.

Here is what we do know for certain: Father Leo Courcy Jr. worked in Vermont for only approximately 3½ years. He remained a priest of the Burlington Diocese even though he rarely worked there after 1967.  According to the Diocese of Burlington, Bishop Kenneth A. Angell revoked Courcy’s priestly faculties in February 1993, though the exact reason is not clear.  However, media reports show him celebrating a funeral mass in the New York area well after that date. 

The Beginning of the End for Fr. Courcy

Father Courcy was laicized in June 2009, according to the the Diocese of Burlington, while working in NYC.  It is not clear what prompted this action more than 15 years after the Diocese said Courcy was not able to work as a priest. 

There are numerous “red flags” in Courcy’s assignment history that would merit further investigation in a sex abuse lawsuit.  For example, Courcy has several leaves of absence, which may be indicative of temporary removals and quiet transfers following allegations of sexual abuse.  The assignment to the Servants of the Paraclete in 1967 very likely means that Courcy was the subject of at least one allegation of abuse around that time.  It could also mean that he was the subject of repeated allegations as of 1967, because, in our firm’s experience, shipping an accused priest to the Jemez Springs, New Mexico, treatment facility typically came only after repeated allegations and an inability to handle the matter quietly within the diocese. Of course, these questions would be answered with more certainty if either the Burlington Diocese or Archdiocese of Santa Fe provided a full and complete disclosure of Courcy’s history, rather than the limited ones they each published in response to public pressure.

In 1994, according to media reports, a civil lawsuit was filed against the Burlington Diocese and Archdiocese of Santa Fe alleging that Father Courcy and Father Joseph Anthony Gallegos sexually abused an altar boy in New Mexico after Courcy’s treatment at the Servants of the Paraclete facility in Jemez Springs. According to media reports, the lawsuit alleged that Courcy left treatment at the facility and returned to ministry against the advice of at least one psychologist. 

In September 2017, Father Courcy was named in a lawsuit alleging that he sexully abused an altar boy in 1969 while serving as a priest at St. Anthony’s in Questa, New Mexico. That same month, his name appeared publicly on the Archdiocese of Santa Fe’s list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors. 

In May 2019, Father Courcy was named in another lawsuit against the Servants of the Paraclete, alleging that Courcy sexually abused two boys during an overnight stay at the rectory of St. Anthony’s in Questa, New Mexico, in 1969. According to the suit, one boy was raped and the other molested. According to the lawsuit, the Servants of the Paraclete sent Father Courcy to St. Anthony’s as a supply priest four days after his arrival for his second round of treatment for child sexual abuse. 

In August 2019, Father Courcy‘s name appeared publicly on the Diocese of Burlington’s list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors.  While the Diocese included certain information about Courcy’s background in its disclosure, we have found that much of it is inaccurate and overall it is totally incomplete.  

Courcy is now in his 80s and believed to be living in the Syracuse, New York, area.  To our knowledge, he has never been criminally charged for his sexual misconduct and is not a registered sex offender.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee in Florida.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Florida, contact our office today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in Florida and nationwide. We can help. 

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. Leo Courcy Jr. – Archdiocese of New York

Father Leo Courcy Jr.

Archdiocese of New York

Leo J Courcy Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1962

Leaves of Absence/Sick Leave: 1965-1966, 1979-1980

Inpatient Evaluation/Treatment: 1967-1970

Removed: 1993

Laicized: 2009 

Assigned as follows:

  • 1962 – 1965: St. Anthony (Burlington, VT)
  • 1965 -1967: Absent from Burlington Diocese on “Sick Leave”
  • 1966Don Bosco Home (Burlington, VT)
  • 1966St. Francis Xavier (Winooski, VT) 
  • 1966: St. Mark (Burlington, VT)
  • 1967 – 1970: Servants of the Paraclete (Santa Fe, NM) (inpatient treatment)
  • 1967 – 1969Holy Ghost (Albuquerque, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1968 – 1969St. Pius X High School (Albuquerque, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1969 – 1970St. Francis Xavier (Clayton, NM)  (during treatment)
  • 1970: Unidentified parish(Amarillo, Texas) (during treatment)
  • 1969/1970: St. Anthony (Questa, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1970: Clayton High School (Clayton, NM) (during treatment)
  • 1971: St. John Vianney (South Burlington, VT) 
  • 1971: St. Mary (Cambridge / Johnson, VT)
  • 1971: St. George (Ottawa, ONT Canada)
  • 1971-1979: On Duty Outside Burlington Diocese (whereabouts unclear)
  • 1973-1974: Ottawa Archdiocese, Director of Education
  • 1974: Our Lady of Visitation (South Gloucester, ONT Canada)
  • 1975: Bayonne, NJ (per his father’s obituary)
  • 1977: St. Mary of the Assumption (Deal, NJ)
  • 1977-1979: Various assignments in Pensacola, Florida
  • 1978-1979: Pensacola Catholic High School (Pensacola, FL)
  • 1979-1980: Leave of Absence
  • 1979: Chaplain, unknown Queens, NY High School
  • 1980-1984: On Duty Outside Burlington Diocese (whereabouts unclear)
  • 1984-1985: St. Frances de Chantal (Bronx, New York)
  • 1986-1989: On Duty Outside Burlington Diocese (whereabouts unclear)
  • 1988-1990: New York Archdiocese Parish Mission Team (Suffern, NY)
  • 1991-1992: St. Mary (Fishkill, NY)
  • 1992-1993: St. Augustine (New York, NY)
  • 1993-1997: Listed in Official Catholic Directory as “On Duty Outside Diocese”

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Leo Courcy Jr.:

The saga of Fr. Leo Courcy is a complicated one and, after an extended investigation, we have done our best to reconstruct what we believe is his trial of abuse across America.  You may notice some assignments that are not listed and that is likely because there are big gaps in the publicly available information, particularly in the 1970s. For example, Courcy appears in a 1970 high school yearbook in New Mexico and then again in a 1978 yearbook in Pensacola, Florida.  His whereabouts during that time are not entirely clear but he may have worked at other parishes and high schools in Canada or New Jersey. It is documented that he served in the Archdiocese of New York beginning in the late 70s until the mid 1990s. 

Here is what we do know for certain: Father Leo Courcy Jr. worked in Vermont for only approximately 3½ years. He remained a priest of the Burlington Diocese even though he rarely worked there after 1967.  According to the Diocese of Burlington, Bishop Kenneth A. Angell revoked Courcy’s priestly faculties in February 1993, though the exact reason is not clear.  However, media reports show him celebrating a funeral mass in the New York area well after that date. 

The Beginning of the End for Fr. Courcy

Father Courcy was laicized in June 2009, according to the the Diocese of Burlington, while working in NYC.  It is not clear what prompted this action more than 15 years after the Diocese said Courcy was not able to work as a priest. 

There are numerous “red flags” in Courcy’s assignment history that would merit further investigation in a sex abuse lawsuit.  For example, Courcy has several leaves of absence, which may be indicative of temporary removals and quiet transfers following allegations of sexual abuse.  The assignment to the Servants of the Paraclete in 1967 very likely means that Courcy was the subject of at least one allegation of abuse around that time.  It could also mean that he was the subject of repeated allegations as of 1967, because, in our firm’s experience, shipping an accused priest to the Jemez Springs, New Mexico, treatment facility typically came only after repeated allegations and an inability to handle the matter quietly within the diocese. Of course, these questions would be answered with more certainty if either the Burlington Diocese or Archdiocese of Santa Fe provided a full and complete disclosure of Courcy’s history, rather than the limited ones they each published in response to public pressure.

In 1994, according to media reports, a civil lawsuit was filed against the Burlington Diocese and Archdiocese of Santa Fe alleging that Father Courcy and Father Joseph Anthony Gallegos sexually abused an altar boy in New Mexico after Courcy’s treatment at the Servants of the Paraclete facility in Jemez Springs. According to media reports, the lawsuit alleged that Courcy left treatment at the facility and returned to ministry against the advice of at least one psychologist. 

In September 2017, Father Courcy was named in a lawsuit alleging that he sexully abused an altar boy in 1969 while serving as a priest at St. Anthony’s in Questa, New Mexico. That same month, his name appeared publicly on the Archdiocese of Santa Fe’s list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors. 

In May 2019, Father Courcy was named in another lawsuit against the Servants of the Paraclete, alleging that Courcy sexually abused two boys during an overnight stay at the rectory of St. Anthony’s in Questa, New Mexico, in 1969. According to the suit, one boy was raped and the other molested. According to the lawsuit, the Servants of the Paraclete sent Father Courcy to St. Anthony’s as a supply priest four days after his arrival for his second round of treatment for child sexual abuse. 

In August 2019, Father Courcy‘s name appeared publicly on the Diocese of Burlington’s list of clergy credibly accused of sex abuse of minors.  While the Diocese included certain information about Courcy’s background in its disclosure, we have found that much of it is inaccurate and overall it is totally incomplete.  

Courcy is now in his 80s and believed to be living in the Syracuse, New York, area.  To our knowledge, he has never been criminally charged for his sexual misconduct and is not a registered sex offender.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Feinberg Dolan sexual abuse

Clergy Abuse Survivors’ Worst Fears About Compensation Funds May Be Warranted

In recent years, most New York bishops have set up allegedly “independent” payout programs for victims of clergy abuse. The stated intent of the programs was to obtain “reconciliation” and “healing.” The Catholic Dioceses in New York denied accusations that their real goal was to prevent legislation reforming the statute of limitations and litigation that would reveal duplicity by the Catholic hierarchy.

From the start, we at Horowitz Law, along with many victims and advocates, were cautions if not outright skeptical. We feared that these programs had a different purpose: to stop the civil windows lawmakers were pushing that give suffering victims more chance to expose corrupt clergy in court.

“Bishops want to persuade legislators ‘back off, we’re handling this crisis ourselves’,” we said. “There’s no need for legal reforms by outsiders.”

Now, compelling evidence shows we were rightfully skeptical.

According to a leaked transcript obtained by ABC News, the most powerful and prominent US Catholic cleric — New York Cardinal Tim Dolan — believes “negotiated settlements could help counter arguments in favor of the (civil), bolstering the position of the church’s lobbyists that legislation is unnecessary because the reckoning and restitution is already underway.”

https://abcnews.go.com/US/exclusive-leaked-transcript-shows-ny-churchs-attempt-block/story?id=75229253

Consider these comments from the tape:

–“I think the Cardinal feels that it is providing his lawyers in Albany with additional persuasive powers not to reopen the statute – “We are already doing this, why bother? Don’t reopen the statute. We are taking care of our own problem.’ I think that is guiding Cardinal Dolan as well.”

–“We want to be able to show” legislators that victims “are accepting this money. You don’t need to change the statute.”

–The “movement afoot in Albany” was a key reason why Dolan “decided to create a program.”

Who made these troubling admissions?  Ken Feinberg, the allegedly independent arbiter who Dolan picked to run his archdiocesan pay out program.

Feinberg has been hired across the country by Catholic enitities to set up similar programs. Through this call, and likely others, Feinberg apparently successfully convinced the bishops of Rochester, Syracuse and Buffalo to follow  Dolan’s lead and establish similar church-controlled (but Feinberg administered) funds.

The transcript also reveals a second goal that Dolan and Feinberg also kept under wraps: saving dioceses money.

In perhaps the most telling comment on the tape, Feinberg says “the fear that if the statute is reopened” settlements will ultimately be much higher. (That’s because in civil lawsuits, victims get ‘discovery’ – church records and witness testimony that typically show how church staff were complicit in a predator’s horrific crimes. That in turn leads to bigger jury awards.)

Feinberg goes on to say “Clearly, the dioceses want (to pay as many victims) $25,000, $50,000 or $100,000, rather than a $1,000,000 or $2,000,000.”

“Right now,” he brags, “we have not paid any claim, however horrific, at more than $500,000.”

Feinberg admits: “The whole point is to get the release, so we offer $10,000. In Buffalo, maybe $5,000.”

ABC notes “Feinberg also appears to have been well aware that alleged victims would feel pressure to accept offers because, prior to the enactment of the Child Victims Act, they had no other legal options.”

“If you don’t take what we are offering, you don’t have to, but what is the alternative?” Feinberg added. “Maybe Albany will change the law, but they haven’t yet.”

This suggests that at a minimum, Feinberg cares more about church officials than wounded victims. At worst, it suggests Feinberg is playing along with Dolan’s deceptions about the intent of the pay out program.

ABC also reports that “When Dolan introduced Feinberg as the administrator of the settlement program, he assured the public that (Feinberg) would have ‘complete autonomy in deciding compensation for victim-survivors.’”

“But throughout the private teleconference, Feinberg displayed a coziness with church leaders, a skepticism toward those coming forward to file claims and, at times, even an apparent distain for some alleged victims.”

On the call, Feinberg’s colleague Camille Biros said, “once we implement the program, it remains an open dialogue with the Diocese (and) are constantly on the phone with church officials.”

ABC reports that these remarks “cast doubt on whether Dolan’s Independent Reconciliation and Compensation Program was truly designed with either independence or reconciliation in mind.”

Adding fuel to the fire, Feinberg promises two benefits of the program. (Spoiler alert: neither are “healing” or “reconciliation.”)

First, it would set up a “a range of possible payouts depending on the severity of the alleged abuse, agreed upon by the program’s administrators AND the dioceses.”

Second, without this program, some of the allegations may resolve on the courthouse steps with a $5,000,000 demand or a $2,000,000 demand,” Feinberg said. In other words, lawsuits will be filed and juries will find punitive damages against church officials who ignored or hid abuse reports.

What a cynical ploy.

Publicly tell parishioners, politicians and the press one thing – this is about healing – and admit privately that it’s really a lobbying and cost-saving tool.

Publicly claim you’re independent. Privately assure potential client that you won’t be.

It’s worth noting that both Dolan and Feinberg have been criticized in this regard as far back as 2016, when the Survivors Network blasted both men:

“Cardinal Tim Dolan’s unilateral, top-down victim pay-off program has barely begun. Yet the man Dolan picked to head it is already insulting and blaming victims. http://www.nytimes.com/2016/10/17/opinion/victims-of-priests-abuse-face-a-choice.html

Kenneth Feinberg told the New York Times that victims tend to be “procrastinators.” At best, that’s stupid. At worst, it’s hurtful. Both he and Dolan should apologize. And they should drop their insensitive, arbitrary and self-serving deadline which forces still-suffering victims to move quickly to deal with decades of pain or else be left out in the cold again.

If kids are to be safer, adults must make it easier, not harder, for victims to report sexual violence. Dolan’s selfish deadline and Feinberg’s callous comments are making it harder.

If victims are to be healed, adults must welcome their disclosures and respond to their suffering whenever victims are strong enough to step forward. Dolan and Feinberg must put the needs of deeply wounded victims ahead of their own convenience.”

Six months later, SNAP asked to sit down with Dolan and Feinberg in an effort to cooperate (apparently with no success):

“Without clear guidelines, survivor input, accountability from the diocese, and the release of evidence, many survivors fear that payouts administered by your office will be little more than ‘hush money.’”

https://www.snapnetwork.org/ny_victims_to_dolan_s_fund_manager_let_us_work_with_you

And many wonder why many abuse victims distrust the church and these programs!

Fr. Raymond Foster – Archdiocese of New York

Father Raymond Foster 

Archdiocese of New York

 

Ordained: Unknown

Assignment History:

  • St. Mary’s (New York, NY)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father Raymond Foster:

In January of 2021, two child sexual abuse survivors brought suit against the Archdiocese of New York and St. Mary’s. Both plaintiffs claim to have been abused by the same priest, Fr. Raymond Foster.

During the time of the abuse, Foster sexually abused one of the accusers throughout the late 1960s at St. Mary’s school and the rectory, by exposing him to pornography, touching him inappropriately, and raping the boy. The abuse took place when the boy was approximately in 4th-7th grade.

Foster sexually abused the second plaintiff throughout the early 1970s in St. Mary’s school and the rectory by touching the boy inappropriately, exposing himself to the minor, showing him pornography, and performing sexual acts. The abuse took place when the boy was approximately in 4th-7th grade.

According to media reports, the complaint alleges that the Archdiocese and St. Mary’s were aware of numerous priests, clerics, and employees sexually abusing children but fostered a culture of silence among their leaders. This lawsuit has been filed using the Child Victims Act (CVA), which allows adult survivors of childhood abuse to file claims against their abusers.

This lawsuit is possible because of the Child Victims Act (CVA), which allows child sexual abuse survivors to bring lawsuits against their abusers and the institutions that enabled the abuse for a limited period of time, even if they would previously have been considered expired under the statute of limitations. CVA lawsuits can be filed at any point until August 14, 2021.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.

Fr. William Lombardy – Archdiocese of New York

Father William Lombardy

Archdiocese of New York

Fr. William Lombardy Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1967

Dead: 2017

Assignment History:

  • St. Mary’s (New York, NY)

Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father William Lombardy:

Fr. William Lombardy was an American chess grandmaster and a former Catholic priest, ordained in 1967.

In January of 2021, two child sexual abuse survivors brought suit against the Archdiocese of New York and St. Mary’s. Both plaintiffs claim to have been abused by the same priest, Fr. William Lombardy.

During the time of the abuse, the two former altar boys were each in the 7th grade when they were abused separately by Lombardy. The sexual abuse the accusers alleged involved Lombardy touching each of them and himself inappropriately.

According to media reports, the complaint alleges that the Archdiocese and St. Mary’s were aware of numerous priests, clerics, and employees sexually abusing children but fostered a culture of silence among their leaders. This lawsuit has been filed using the Child Victims Act (CVA), which allows adult survivors of childhood abuse to file claims against their abusers.

Lombardy died in 2017.

According to media reports, this lawsuit is possible because of the Child Victims Act (CVA), which allows child sexual abuse survivors to bring lawsuits against their abusers and the institutions that enabled the abuse for a limited period of time, even if they would previously have been considered expired under the statute of limitations. CVA lawsuits can be filed at any point until August 14, 2021.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of New York. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest or other Catholic clergy in New York State, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Archdiocese of New York now have legal options, but filing deadlines will apply so do not delay in reaching out to us.  Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse in New York and nationwide. We can help.

Contact us at (888) 283-9922 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com to discuss your options today.