Man sues Archdiocese for Vatican cover-up
MIAMI (WSVN) -- A South Florida man is suing the Archdiocese of Miami after, he alleges, the church protected priests who were known sexual predators on orders from the Vatican.
An alleged Vatican cover-up with ties to a West Flagler Church surfaced with dark details on Wednesday. An anonymous victim said he was gang raped by priests at Our Lady of the Divine Providence Catholic Church located on West Flagler Street in the 1970s. "He was sexually assaulted on about four or five occasions. On some occasions his hands were tied behind his back," said the alleged victim's attorney Jeff Herman.
The lawsuit was announced Wednesday and accuses Father Ernesto Garcia Rubio and Father Neil "Gus" Doherty. "He was being raped by Father Doherty while Father Garcia Rubio was performing oral sex on this boy," said Herman.
Doherty was recently convicted of child abuse in an unrelated case. He is now serving a 15-year sentence.
Herman said Garcia Rubio has been implicated in nearly a dozen child abuse cases and is believed to be in hiding in South America.
The high-level accusations Herman states is from a letter sent from a Vatican official to then Archbishop Coleman Carroll, asking for protection for Father Garcia Rubio, saying he was expelled from Cuba for homosexuality. "The Vatican protected Father Garcia Rubio knowing he was a pedophile," said Herman.
The Archbishop's response back in 1968: "I will do what I can in every way to protect him."
The lawsuit is asking for $5 million from the Archdiocese of Miami in damages. Victims of abuse by priests want a bigger reward from the Vatican. "We hope the Pope will use his last moments to show true leadership and discipline," said abuse victim and advocate David Pitman.
Pope Benedict XVI gave his last general audience speech on Wednesday.
The Archdiocese of Miami released a statement which read: "The Archdiocese of Miami's policy on sexual abuse is very clear: a report of these allegations is made to the State Attorney's office; our internal Archdiocesan Review Board reviews the allegation; and pastoral care and counseling are offered to the alleged victim."
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