Legal objection stalls Archdiocese settlement for victims of sexual abuse

Just a week away from a potential settlement between Catholic clergy and the victims of sexual abuse the Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis filed an objection to the agreement, a move that, if sustained, would effectively stall the case.

The victims were angered and surprised by the legal tactic, despite the Archdiocese claiming the action was not unusual and ultimately done for their benefit to preserve "insurance rights regarding overlapping claims for the benefit of the victim creditors in its case."

"This is a pattern that the archdiocese has engaged in throughout the course of the bankruptcy process," said Matt Finnegan, an attorney for the victims. "And this maneuver that they pulled yesterday might be the most outrageous that they pulled so far."

The Archdiocese of St. Paul and Minneapolis filed for bankruptcy in early 2015 in order to pay for several lawsuits, including the one in question, which was filed by more than 60 victims of alleged sexual abuse by the Crosier Fathers and Brothers, a religious order based in Onamia, Minn. 

The $25 million agreement is now in the hands of a judge and could be approved as early as next Thursday if the judge dismisses the objection.