$10 million Los Angeles settlement first since document release
by Brian Roewe Mar. 28, 2013
As Cardinal Roger Mahony entered the Sistine Chapel in Rome March 12 to begin the process of electing the next pope, his name made headlines in his home diocese for other reasons.
The cardinal, the Los Angeles archdiocese and an ex-priest agreed to settlements in four clergy abuse-related cases, totaling $9.9 million. The settlements are the first since the late January court-ordered release of 12,000 pages of abuse-related documents, and Mahony’s ban from public and administrative duties in the archdiocese.
On the same day another case, at the northern end of the state, also made headlines when a visiting priest was arrested on suspicion of child abuse.
The former priest at the center of the Los Angeles settlements was Michael Baker, who was removed from the priesthood in 2000 and convicted in 2007 of molesting two children. He was paroled in 2011 after initially receiving a 10-year prison sentence.
The release of the files factored into the settlements, an attorney for the alleged victims told the Los Angeles Times.
“Once we got the files, it confirmed everything we had argued for years and years. Cardinal Mahony’s fingerprints were all over the case,” Vince Finaldi told the Times.
The documents pertaining to Baker reveal that in December 1986 Mahony sent him for psychological evaluation in New Mexico after Baker confessed to the then-archbishop his sexual relationships with two boys, beginning in the early 1980s. The psychological evaluation expressed concern with Baker’s attitude toward the relationships, saying they were “quite disturbing to listen to.”
“At no point did he indicate any awareness at all that his sexual involvement with these two boys may have consequences for them nor did he seem the least bit concerned about any consequences for him except that he may now have to go through a treatment program which he feels would be extraneous,” read the evaluations, which did recommend immediate treatment.
Therapy continued for Baker as he re-entered ministry in the archdiocese. He initially worked with the elderly and retired priests before serving numerous parishes as an administrator or associate pastor. Ultimately, the archdiocese placed him on inactive leave in April 2000 after allegations came forward that he had continued to molest the same boys.
….Dominican Fr. Tom Doyle told NCR.
He also speculated Mahony himself could eventually face charges.
“I would not be at all surprised if Mahony were, if another grand jury were convened and Mahony were indicted. Not at all surprised,” he said.
Farther north in the state, new abuse allegations involving a foreign visiting priest emerged March 12. Fr. Julio Guarin-Sosa, a visiting priest to the Stockton, Calif., diocese, was arrested on suspicion of sexual battery and molestation of a minor. The alleged incident occurred in Yuba City, Calif., part of the Sacramento diocese, and approximately 80 miles north of his assignment at St. Anne Parish in Lodi, Calif.
Guarin-Sosa was arraigned March 12 in Sutter County Superior Court and is being held in the county jail. The Colombian priest had been assisting at St. Anne for almost a month, while his brother, Fr. Mario Guarin, a parochial vicar at the parish, was on vacation.
The Stockton diocese released a brief statement shortly after Guarin-Sosa’s arrest.
“As a result of the charges, Father Guarin’s permission to exercise ministry in the Diocese of Stockton has been revoked. His diocese in Colombia has been informed,” the diocese stated….. http://ncronline.org/node/48296
Prominent Australian entertainer arrested in relation to Jimmy Savile child sex investigation
Jon Kaila News Limited Network March 29, 2013
A PROMINENT Australian entertainer has been arrested by Scotland Yard detectives in London on suspicion of sexual offences. Metropolitan Police confirmed officers have arrested an 82-year-old man living in Berkshire.
He was arrested by detectives involved in Operation Yewtree – which is investigating the Jimmy Savile child sex abuse scandal that has rocked the UK. He was released about 11.30pm UK time after being questioned by detectives. His present whereabouts are unknown. A Scotland Yard spokesman said he was bailed to a date in May, pending further inquiries.
Operation Yewtree was former in the wake of revelations the now deceased television host and radio DJ Savile, sexually abused and assaulted more than 400 people, mostly children, over five decades in hospitals, schools and BBC’s London studios…. http://www.news.com.au/world-news/prominent-australian-entertainer-arrested-in-relation-to-jimmy-savile-child-sex-investigation/story-fndir2ev-1226608965017