Abuse settlement case collects 6.65 million dollars

Attorneys representing 14 people abused by Chicago-area priests have reached $6.65 million (4.92 million EUR) in settlements with the Archdiocese of Chicago.

The settlements were reached between March 2006 and March 2007 and cover lawsuits filed against 12 current and former priests for abuse that allegedly occurred from the 1960s to the early 1990s, Minnesota attorney Jeffery Anderson said.

Susan Burritt, media relations director for the Archdiocese of Chicago, said all of the priests named in the settlements have been removed from public ministry or are deceased.

"The Archdiocese of Chicago takes all allegations of sexual misconduct seriously," she said.

Three of the 12 priests - Vincent McCaffrey, Norbert Maday and Robert Mayer - have been convicted on sex-related charges.

The settlements do not apply to a suit Anderson filed last year asking the Archdiocese of Chicago to release secret files on priests accused of abuse. That suit is still pending.

"The bad news is there's still more work to be done," Anderson said.

He said his legal team represents between 12 and 15 more victims whose cases have not yet been settled or mediated.

Burritt said the Archdiocese traditionally has paid settlements using insurance money or by selling unused real estate.

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Author`s name Angela Antonova