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Ky. Judge OKs Priest Abuse Settlement

Oct 20, 2003 | AP

A judge has approved a plan to divide a $25.7 million settlement among 243 people who sued the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville claiming priests molested them when they were children.

"The longer it drags on, the more they are forced to endure memories of the most painful times of their lives," Shake said in the ruling Friday.

Plaintiffs are expected to receive between $15,333 and $175,000 each.

The plaintiffs said the church knew they were molested as children by priests or other employees but concealed it and did nothing to stop it. The settlement was one of the largest against the Roman Catholic Church.

To determine individual awards, the victims will be divided into three classes according to severity of abuse. Other factors include the victim's age when the abuse occurred, how many times molestation occurred and whether the victim was given drugs, alcohol or pornography.

Payments should be made by mid-January, Turner said. Those unhappy with their shares may appeal.

Mike Turner, the original plaintiff in the case, said he was pleased by the judge's ruling. "I see an end, which is a great thing."

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