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5 Sue Iowa Diocese, Alleging Sexual Abuse

Apr 30, 2004 | AP

Five more people have sued naming a Roman Catholic priest and the Diocese of Sioux City after, their lawyer said, they gave up waiting for the church to take action on its own for alleged sexual abuse that occurred when they were children.

The five allege in lawsuits filed Monday in Woodbury County District Court that the Rev. George McFadden "committed offensive and inappropriate sexual contact" with them.

One alleged that the contact occurred in 1969 or '70 while McFadden was the pastor at St. Joseph's Catholic Church in Jefferson.

McFadden has been accused of sexually abusing boys and girls at other parishes in the diocese. The suits allege that the diocese knew of the allegations but covered up McFadden's actions.

Four similar lawsuits against McFadden and the diocese are pending and are scheduled for trial early next year in Sioux City.

McFadden is retired and living with relatives in Fort Wayne. Attempts Thursday to reach him were unsuccessful.

McFadden has been suspended of his priestly faculties, meaning he cannot say Mass, wear priestly garments or perform other functions of a priest.

The other four said the alleged abuse occurred in the early to mid-1960s at Sioux City's St. Francis of Assisi parish, which is now closed.

All five people were under age 12 when the alleged abuse occurred, the lawsuits said.

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