8 new civil suits allege Philadelphia priest abuse

September 18, 2012 2:34:12 PM PDT
Eight new civil lawsuits allege the Archdiocese of Philadelphia covered up child sex assault allegations made against seven Roman Catholic priests.

The lawsuits were filed Tuesday by a total of nine plaintiffs.

Michael McDonnell and Andrew Druding said the abuse they suffered as children still haunts them. They said they wanted to go public to help other victims.

Lawyers for the plaintiffs said their clients decided to come forward when former archdiocesan official Monsignor William Lynn was found guilty of child endangerment and received a three- to six-year prison sentence. The 61-year-old is the first U.S. church official convicted of endangering children by keeping predator priests in ministry.

Named in the latest lawsuits are Lynn, Archbishop Charles Chaput, his predecessor, Cardinal Justin Rigali, and the priests accused by the plaintiffs of sexual abuse.