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Diocese of Portland reaches settlement on sex abuse case

.- The Diocese of Portland, Maine has reached  a $200,000 settlement with a woman who  was allegedly molested by a priest in 1976 in South Berwick.

The announcement was made Wednesday by Mitchell Garabedian  of Boston, an attorney who has dedicated his recent years to reaching large settlements with Catholic dioceses around the country.

The victim, who lives outside of New England, was 11 years old at the time and one of the first female altar servers in the state.

Sue Bernard, spokesperson for the diocese, said the settlement money came from insurance.

She also said that the diocese received its first complaint about Fr. James Vallely – who is now deceased- in 1978 and took action.

At least three other people, including the victim in the settlement, have said that Vallely sexually abused them, Bernard said.

Garabedian has represented more than 650 victims in clergy sexual abuse cases throughout the country since 1995.


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