Tag: Diocese of Paterson

New Jersey Sexual Abuse - Horowitz Law

IVCP – New Jersey Catholic Dioceses – What You Need to Know

Beginning June 15, 2019, people who were sexually abused during their childhood by priests and other clergy of one of the Catholic Dioceses in New Jersey may receive an invitation to participate in the Independent Victim Compensation Program (“IVCP”).  If you receive such an invitation, it is important to contact an attorney before making a decision on participating in the IVCP.  While the program is designed to compensate clergy abuse victims, there are other legal options you will want to consider.

The IVCP may be the right compensation program for some clergy abuse victims, but it is not for everyone.  For instance, a civil lawsuit may be better and more valuable option for your claim.  A lawsuit will give you the opportunity to learn the full history of the priests and get documents about what the Diocese knew about the offending priest and when they knew it.  If you decide to settle your claim through the IVCP program, you will be giving up potentially-valuable legal rights to file a lawsuit in New Jersey against the Diocese and others responsible for your sexual abuse.

Horowitz Law is representing numerous victims of sexual abuse by priests in New Jersey and has decades of experience handling these claims. It is important that you contact a sexual abuse attorney well-versed in the inner working of the Catholic Church and who has knowledge of the scope of the clergy abuse scandal. At Horowitz Law, we painstakingly assembled biographies on every priest in the State of New Jersey who has publicly faced an allegation of sexual abuse in the Archdiocese of Newark and the Dioceses of Camden, Metuchen, Paterson, and Trenton.

Horowitz Law assists client in in assembling evidence, preparing and submitting the claims form in a timely manner, and communicating and meeting with the fund administrators.

The effective date of the IVCP is June 15, 2019.  The program is available to anyone abuse by clergy of one of the New Jersey Dioceses regardless of whether the clergyman was affiliated with a school, parish or other agency of the Diocese. Program administrations report that the claims will be handled in the order in which they are received, starting with claims of sexual abuse that were reported to the Diocese prior to the date of this Protocol.  Victims shall be eligible for compensation regardless of whether they have previously reported these incidents to the Diocese or law enforcement.  Victims will not be eligible for the program if they have previously settled their clergy abuse claim or if the abuse was committed by a religious Order priest or priest of a Dioceses outside New Jersey.  Notably, the entire IVCP process is confidential and claimant will not have their names publicly disclosed by applying for compensation.

The program will be independently administered by neutral fund administrators in two Phases.  Phase I, which begins June 15, 2019, is available to victims who reported their abuse on or before June 15, 2019 to their Diocese.  Phase II is for victims who have not previously reported their abuse.  Phase II victims may register their claims beginning June 15, 2019 and continuing through October 31, 2019.  The deadline to file claims for Phase I and II is December 31, 2019.

New Jersey Sexual Abuse - Horowitz Law

New Jersey Dioceses Sets Compensation Fund Rules for Clergy Sexual Abuse Victims

The Archdiocese of Newark and the Dioceses of Camden, Metuchen, Trenton and Paterson have set a start date of June 15, 2019 for the Independent Victim Compensation Program (“IVCP”).  The IVCP is intended to compensate victims of sexual abuse by their clergy regardless of how many years ago the abuse occurred.  Claimants must complete a questionnaire with sworn answers and submit documentation (if such materials exists) to be eligible for compensation.

Horowitz Law is a law firm experienced in representing clients seeking financial compensation from the Catholic Church in New Jersey for sexual abuse.  Call Horowitz Law at (954) 641-2100 or send an email to adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com for a free confidential consultation concerning representation.  We only handle cases on a contingency basis and there is no fee if there is no recovery.

The effective date of the IVCP is June 15, 2019.  The program is available to anyone abuse by clergy of one of the New Jersey Dioceses regardless of whether the clergyman was affiliated with a school, parish or other agency of the Diocese. Program administrations report that the claims will be handled in the order in which they are received, starting with claims of sexual abuse that were reported to the Diocese prior to the date of this Protocol.  Victims shall be eligible for compensation regardless of whether they have previously reported these incidents to the Diocese or law enforcement.  Victims will not be eligible for the program if they have previously settled their clergy abuse claim or if the abuse was committed by a religious Order priest or priest of a Dioceses outside New Jersey.  Notably, the entire IVCP process is confidential and claimant will not have their names publicly disclosed by applying for compensation.

The program will be independently administered by neutral fund administrators in two Phases.  Phase I, which begins June 15, 2019, is available to victims who reported their abuse on or before June 15, 2019 to their Diocese.  Phase II is for victims who have not previously reported their abuse.  Phase II victims may register their claims beginning June 15, 2019 and continuing through October 31, 2019.  The deadline to file claims for Phase I and II is December 31, 2019.

 

Fr. William Winston – Diocese of Paterson

Father William Winston

Diocese of Paterson

Fr. William Winston Horowitz Law

Ordained (as a Catholic priest): 1986

Removed: 2004

Laicized: 2007

Assigned as follows:

  • Corpus Christi (Chatham, NJ)
  • St. Patrick (Chatham, NJ)
  • Assumption (Morristown, NJ)
  • St. Virgil (Morris Plains, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father William Winston:

According to media reports, Fr. William Winston was a married Episcopal priest with children when he was allowed by the Vatican to convert to Catholicism almost 20 years earlier.

In 2005, Winston was charged with the sexual abuse and neglect of a young boy, presumably his own son.  In February 2006, Winston pleaded guilty to the abuse and neglect of a young boy. He told the judge he could not refute the sexual abuse charge because his memory was blurred by his alcoholism and subsequently admitted that he touched the child’s genitals on several occasions when the boy was between 1999 and 2002, starting when the boy was 4 years old. At the time, he was serving at St. Virgil’s in Morris Plains.

During his prosecution, a prior history of domestic violence came to the public’s attention.  According to news reports, Winston was arrested and charged with domestic violence in 2004.  He later admitted in court as part of that case that he had severely beaten his wife on at least two occasions in the rectory at St. Virgil while in an alcohol-fueled rage.  

Winston’s defense to the charge of sexual abuse was that he could not handle the demands of the church and his family and compounded his problems with alcohol. His attorney revealed that Winston had applied to the Vatican for laicization, the formal process of removal from priesthood, as a result of the allegation.

In May 2006, Winston was sentenced to jail for six months.

In August 2007, he was laicized (removed from the priesthood) by the Holy See.

Winston’s name was included on the Diocese of Paterson’s February 2019 list of credibly accused priests.

Winston is now in his mid sixties and is believed to be residing in Arlington, VA.  He 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 Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. Gregory White – Diocese of Paterson

Father Gregory White

Diocese of Paterson

Ordained: 1996

Died: 2002

Assigned as follows:

  • Blessed Kateri (Sparta, NJ)
  • St. Anthony (Hawthorne, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Gregory White

Father Gregory White’s name first appeared publicly on the Diocese of Paterson’s list of accused priests published in February 2019.  It released almost no information on the allegations against each priest, including age/gender of the victims, or the priest’s assignment at the time of the alleged abuse.  However, according to the Bishop of Paterson, in the case of each priest on the list, “the Diocese of Paterson received information concerning possible misconduct by the individual, investigated the matter for corroborating evidence and determined that the report was credible. Accordingly, while those individuals may deny having engaged in illegal behavior involving a minor and they are entitled to be presumed innocent in a criminal court of law, the Diocese has determined that the information it received was credible and it has thus included their names on this disclosure.”

White died in May 2002, at the age of 32, the same month the Diocese of Paterson says he was removed from ministry.  This removal presumably followed an allegation of sexual abuse.

At the time of his death, he was teaching European History in Emerson High School in Emerson.  

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. John Wall – Diocese of Paterson

Father John Wall

Diocese of Paterson

Ordained: 1954

Died: 1983

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Virgil (Morris Plains, NJ)
  • Chaplain (St. Mary Hospital, Passaic, NJ)
  • Our Lady Queen of Peace (Branchville, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father John Wall

Father Wall’s name first appeared publicly on the Diocese of Paterson’s list of accused priests published in February 2019.  The Diocese of Paterson released almost no information on the allegations against each priest, including age/gender of the victims, or the priest’s assignment at the time of the alleged abuse.  However, according to the Bishop of Paterson, in the case of each priest on the list, “the Diocese of Paterson received information concerning possible misconduct by the individual, investigated the matter for corroborating evidence and determined that the report was credible. Accordingly, while those individuals may deny having engaged in illegal behavior involving a minor and they are entitled to be presumed innocent in a criminal court of law, the Diocese has determined that the information it received was credible and it has thus included their names on this disclosure.”

According to the Diocese of Paterson, Wall died in 1983.  At the time of his death, he was a priest in good standing. 

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. James Scott – Diocese of Paterson

Father James Scott

Diocese of Paterson

 

Fr. James Scott Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1974

Removed: 1995

Assigned as follows:

  • Faculty, Paul VI High School (Clifton, NJ)
  • Our Lady Star of the Sea (Lake Hopatcong, NJ)
  • Faculty, Pope John High School (Sparta, NJ)
  • Faculty, DePaul High School (Wayne, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father James Scott

Father Scott’s name first appeared publicly on the Diocese of Paterson’s list of accused priests published in February 2019.  The Diocese of Paterson released almost no information on the allegations against each priest, including age/gender of the victims, or the priest’s assignment at the time of the alleged abuse.  However, according to the Bishop of Paterson, in the case of each priest on the list, “the Diocese of Paterson received information concerning possible misconduct by the individual, investigated the matter for corroborating evidence and determined that the report was credible. Accordingly, while those individuals may deny having engaged in illegal behavior involving a minor and they are entitled to be presumed innocent in a criminal court of law, the Diocese has determined that the information it received was credible and it has thus included their names on this disclosure.”

He was removed from the ministry in 1995.

According to the Diocese of Paterson, Scott is still alive.  He is believed to be residing in New Jersey.  He is now 70 years old.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. William McCarthy – Diocese of Paterson

Father William McCarthy

Diocese of Paterson

Fr. William McCarthy Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1963

Removed: 2003

Reinstated: 2008

Assigned as follows:

  • 1980-2003 St. Rose of Lima (East Hanover, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father William McCarthy:

In April 2002, Father William McCarthy was accused of the sexual abuse of two sisters. The girls, ages 6 and 8 when the abuse began, were allegedly molested between 1981-1983 during McCarthy’s assignment to St. Rose of Lima. McCarthy denied all allegations.

In 2003, Bishop Frank Rodimer suspended McCarthy from active ministry following an internal review board investigation of the allegations.

McCarthy retired voluntarily in March 2003, just before the allegation became public, about three months before his already-planned retirement.

In May 2008, the three canon lawyers ordered by the Vatican concluded that the allegation was not proved to the canonical standard of guilt, and therefore McCarthy could not be laicized (removed from the priesthood). The Holy See ordered the Diocese of Paterson to return McCarthy to ministry as a priest in good standing.  

The allegations were not investigated by law enforcement due to the expiration of the criminal statute of limitations.

In August 2010, Father McCarthy’s memoir “The Conspiracy: An Innocent Priest” was published. He is currently Pastor Emeritus at St. Rose of Lima in East Hanover.

His name was not included on the Diocese of Paterson’s February 2019 list of priests credibly accused of sexually abusing minors despite the initial findings to the contrary.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. Julian Varettoni – Diocese of Paterson

Father Julian Varettoni

Diocese of Paterson

Fr. Julian Varettoni Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1955

Elevated to Monsignor: 1984

Accused: 2004

Retired voluntarily: 2007

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Anthony Parish (Hawthorne, NJ)
  • St. Mary Parish (Dover, NJ)  
  • St. George Parish (Paterson, NJ)
  • Morris Catholic High School (Denville, NJ)  
  • DePaul Catholic High School (Wayne, NJ)  
  • St. Joseph Hospital (Paterson, NJ)
  • Sacred Heart Church (Clifton, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Julian Varettoni:

According to media reports, in 2004, an adult male alleged that Father Julian Varettoni had molested him as a young boy in the 1960’s. The Diocese of Paterson review board found there was insufficient information to determine whether the allegation was “credible” within the internal diocesan policies, so Varettoni was never removed from ministry. The board, however, found the victim’s testimony credible, which is a disconnect from its ultimate finding: the board members believed the victim’s allegation, but concluded that the abuse did not occur as alleged.

In February 2005, the Diocese of Paterson settled with the victim and others for $5 million. According to Varettoni’s canon lawyer, the Holy See later cleared him of the allegations as well. 

Varettoni continued as pastor of Sacred Heart in Clifton until he retired in 2007.

Varettoni’s name was not included on the Diocese of Paterson’s February 2019 list of credibly accused priests.

He is now 89, and believed to be residing in Hackettstown, NJ as a retired priest in good standing.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. Allen Stepien – Diocese of Paterson

Father Allen Stepien

Diocese of Paterson

Fr. Allen Stepien Horowitz Law

Ordained: 1965

Removed: 2002

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Rose of Lima (East Hanover, NJ)
  • Assumption of the Blessed Virgin Mary (Morristown, NJ)
  • St. Anthony (Hawthorne, NJ)
  • St. Philip the Apostle (Clifton, NJ)
  • St. Mark the Evangelist (Long Valley, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Allen Stepien:

According to media reports, in April 2002, Father Allen Stepien was placed on administrative leave, due to multiple accusations that he had sexually abused several minors in the late 1970s and early 1980s.

In 2003, the Diocese of Paterson review board deemed the accusations against Stepien to be credible, recommending his removal from ministry.  The Diocese then sent the case to the Vatican, requesting a church trial to remove Stepien from the priesthood.

In 2009, according to the the Official Catholic Directory, Stepien is listed as a retired priest.

Stepien’s name appears on the February 2019 list of priests credibly accused of sexually abusing minors published by the Diocese of Paterson.  Stating only that Stepien was the subject of “multiple” allegations of abuse, the Diocese of Paterson has not released any details about the allegations, including the exact number of allegations and Stepien’s assignments at the time of the abuse.

Stepien, now in his eighties, is believed to be residing in Clifton, NJ.  His current status as a priest is unknown – the Diocese of Paterson has not said if he was ever laicized.  

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.

 

Fr. Ralph Sodano – Diocese of Paterson

Father Ralph Sodano

Diocese of Paterson

Ordained: 1967

Removed: 2002

Died: 2008

Assigned as follows:

  • St. Brendan (Clifton, NJ)
  • Diocesan Director of Catholic Scouting
  • Pope Pius XII High School (Passaic, NJ)
  • St. Rose of Lima (East Hanover, NJ)
  • Chaplain, United States Navy
  • Sacred Heart (Dover, NJ)
  • Our Lady of the Mountain (Long Valley, NJ)

Summary of Abuse Allegations against Father Ralph Sodano:

According to media reports, in 2002, Father Ralph Sodano was placed on administrative leave, due to accusations he abused two boys in the 1970s. One victim said Sodano drove him to another priest’s Long Island home in 1976 and that other boys were at the house, wearing only their underwear while watching television. He said Sodano and the other priest told the boy to remove most of his clothes.

In 2003, the Diocese of Paterson deemed the accusations credible and sent the case to the Vatican, requesting a church trial to remove Sodano from the priesthood.

As of April 2008, a total of four accusations were made publicly against Father Sodano. Two came by way of civil lawsuits filed against the Diocese of Paterson.  

Sodano’s name appears on the Diocese of Paterson’s February 2019 list of credibly accused priests. While the Diocese of Paterson confirmed that Sodano has been the subject of “multiple” credible allegations, it did not say how many allegations had been made against him, nor his assignments at the time of the abuse.

Sodano died in 2008.

Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Diocese of Paterson.  If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in New Jersey, contact our office today. Although many years have passed, those abused by Catholic clergy in the Diocese of Paterson now have legal options to recover damages due to a compensation fund created for victims.  Contact us at (954) 641-2100 or adam@adamhorowitzlaw.com today.