Judge Refuses To Open Records of Spokane Priests Sex Abuse

By: A federal bankruptcy judge has denied the Spokesman-Review's request for records detailing payouts to sexual abuse victims of Catholic priests in Spokane.

The judge says the records are protected by confidentiality agreements with the Spokane Catholic Diocese.

A lawyer for the newspaper says they prevent the public from knowing which priests were perpetrators of the worst abuse and whether they are still in the ministry.

The claims will be paid from a $48 million trust established in the diocese's bankruptcy settlement.

Claims from the sex abuse scandal forced the church into bankruptcy protection in December of 2004 and it just emerged this month.


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