Pope Watch

New Details on Church Abuse in San Diego

Lawyers representing nearly 150 plaintiffs who claim sexual abuse by Catholic clergy have released 10,000 pages of previously sealed internal church documents. The collection reveals numerous cases of uninvestigated abuse, and church misconduct stretching backs 60 years. “It’s amazingly rich,” said Terry McKiernan, founder of the Bishopaccountability.org, which publishes internal Catholic Church papers made public as a result of litigation. Priests notorious for sexually abusing children, the papers reveal, were simply transferred to different dioceses, often outside of the United States. Some priests, such as Gustavo Benson, who was transferred to the Diocese of Ensenada in Mexico, remain active in the ministry. “These documents demonstrate years and years of concerted action that has allowed this community’s children to be victimized, and it is not until the community looks at these documents that this cycle is ever going to be ended,” said Anthony DeMarco, a plaintiffs attorney.