Loading
Supreme Court allows sex abuse case against Vatican to proceed
Supreme Court allows sex abuse case against Vatican to proceed

.- Today the U.S. Supreme Court declined an immunity appeal by the Holy See in a case that attempts to sue the Vatican for transferring a priest accused of sexually abusing a minors several decades ago. The ruling by the Supreme Court allows the case to move forward.

An anonymous plaintiff from Oregon filed suit against the Vatican in 2002 after Fr. Andrew Ronan, an Irish priest with a history of sexually abusing minors, was transferred from Ireland to the U.S. and eventually moved to the Portland, Oregon. According to Reuters, Fr. Ronan died in 1992.

The plaintiff claims he was abused by Fr. Ronan several times in the mid 1960s and has filed suit against the Vatican, charging that the Catholic Church is responsible for transferring the priest and conspiring to cover up the allegations.

Jeffrey Lena, the U.S. attorney for the Vatican, has argued that the plaintiff has not provided evidence that the Vatican moved the priest or had control over him. Several U.S. bishops have also stated in the media that it is the local bishop who has control over priests, not the Vatican.

In a move to have a ruling by the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals vacated, the Holy See attempted to claim immunity under a U.S. Law – the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act of 1976 – which helps prevent foreign states from being sued in court.

However, the appeals court cited exceptions to the law and charged that there was sufficient evidence that Fr. Ronan was an employee of the Vatican under Oregon law, thus allocating responsibility to the Holy See.

Another development in the case came in May when the U.S. Solicitor General’s office submitted an amicus curiae brief to the U.S. Supreme Court arguing that the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals misapplied the Sovereign Immunities Act.

The brief also claimed that the priest’s sexual abuse was also “not within the scope of the priest’s employment,” according to the solicitor general’s office, which advised the case be vacated and remanded back to the appellate court.

Despite these arguments, the U.S. Supreme Court allowed the 9th Circuit ruling to stand and declined to rule on the Vatican's immunity appeal. The decision by the nation's highest court was made without comment. The case will now proceed in U.S. District Court under the Oregon standards of employment.


Ads by AdsLiveMedia(What's this?)

* The number of messages that can be online is limited. CNA reserves the right to edit messages for content and tone. Comments and opinions expressed by users do not necessarily reflect the opinions or beliefs of CNA. CNA will not publish comments with abusive language, insults or links to other pages

RESOURCES »

Ads by Google (What's this?)
Ads by Google (What's this?)

Featured Videos

Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis celebrates the closing Mass and announces site of next World Youth Day
Pope Francis visits poor neighborhood and meets with young people from Argentina
Pope Francis celebrates Mass at the National Shrine of Our Lady of Aparecida
Denver rally draws hundreds in support of religious freedom
Pope Francis prays over a sick man in St Peter's Square
Denver women's clinic will offer natural, Catholic care
Interview Clips: Barbara Nicolosi speaks to CNA
US Cardinals press conference at North American College
Pope Benedict to retire to monastery inside Vatican City
Pope cites waning strength as reason for resignation
Hundreds convene in Denver to urge respect for life
New Orange bishop encourages Catholic unity in diversity
Chinese pro-life activist calls for reform, international attention
At Lincoln installation, Bishop Conley says holiness is success
Mother Cabrini shrine reopens in Chicago after a decade
Ordination of 33 deacons fills St. Peter's with joy
Cardinal says "Charity is the mother of all the virtues"
Augustine Institute expands evangelization effort with new campus
Bishops recall 'Way of St. James' as chance to trust in God
Los Angeles cathedral's newest chapel houses Guadalupe relic
Apr
19

Liturgical Calendar

April 19, 2014

Holy Saturday

All readings:
Today »
This year »

Catholic Daily

Gospel of the Day

Mt 28:1-10

Gospel
Date
04/19/14
04/18/14
04/17/14

Daily Readings


First Reading:: Gen 1:1-2:2
Gospel:: Mt 28:1-10

Saint of the Day

Blessed James Oldo »

Saint
Date

Homily of the Day

Mt 28:1-10

Homily
Date
04/19/14
04/18/14
04/17/14

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com

Ads by AdsLiveMedia.com
     HTML
Text only
Headlines
  

Follow us: