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Monday, January 31, 2011

Settlements reached in two sex-abuse cases with local ties

From Judy Thomas:

Two sexual abuse lawsuits, one involving a former Kansas City area Catholic priest and another filed against a church in western Missouri, have been settled.

The Archdiocese of San Antonio announced that it had settled a lawsuit against the Rev. John M. Fiala for nearly $1 million. A lawsuit against New Life Bible Church in St. Joseph was settled for an undisclosed amount.

Fiala was charged last year with solicitation to commit capital murder after authorities said he tried to hire a hit man to kill the teenage boy who accused him. He is being held in a Dallas County jail on $800,000 bond.

The boy filed a civil lawsuit accusing Fiala of repeatedly assaulting him in 2007 and 2008 — twice at gunpoint — while Fiala was a pastoral administrator at Sacred Heart of Mary Parish in Rocksprings, Texas. The boy was 16 at the time.

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