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Sexual abuse: victims of priests in the diocese of Amos would receive more than $9 million

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Collective action reports alleged victims who denounce around ten priests who worked in the diocese of Amos. (Archive photo)

  • Gabriel Poirier (View profile)Gabriel Poirier

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Victims of sexual assault committed by priests in the Diocese of Amos could obtain more than $9 million in compensation. This is specified in an agreement which will be submitted to the Superior Court for approval.

The law firm behind the collective action claims that diocesan priests of Amos have assaulted more than 40 victims since 1940.

En Mauricie, an agreement was also reached for people who say they are victims of the priests of the diocese of Trois-Rivières. This agreement of nearly $11 million must also be approved by the Superior Court.

C' is the Montreal firm Arsenault Dufresne Wee which represents the alleged victims in these two cases.

Lawyer Alain Arsenault believes that new people could register for the class action as victims. However, he refuses to give a figure. Last March, the appeal included 35 alleged victims.

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The number of priests could also change, points out Mr. Arsenault. There are people who know about it and who haven't registered yet. They are waiting for developments and they will choose. The priests who abused are often different. Often, we find priests who have had one or two victims. I expect to have a certain number of priests which will increase.

The agreement reached offers compensation to victims of 16 priests who worked in the diocese of Amos.

We have other collective actions against religious congregations where religious priests worked. And we have already included in other collective actions people from the Amos region who were attacked by religious priests. We try to cover everyone.

A quote from Alain Arsenault, lawyer

Alain Arsenault's office is leading a dozen appeals, including one against the congregation of the Missionary Oblates of Mary Immaculate, which allegedly caused indigenous victims in Abitibi-Témiscamingue.

The class action was filed in Superior Court in December 2021. The class representative is a sixty-year-old who claims to have been sexually assaulted when he was between the ages of 7 and 11 years by Father Paul-Émile Bilodeau at the Notre-Dame-de-Fatima school in Val-d'Or.

In addition to Father Bilodeau, court documents mention the names of Réal Couture, Armand Roy, Lucien Côté, Hubert Fortier, Henri-Paul Ratté, Laval Tremblay, Odilon Boutin, Adolphe Delisle, Henry Dobbelsteyn, Jules Larose, Philippe Plourde, André Leith , Ernest Roy, Joseph Tétreault and Marc-Aurèle Guillemette.

Marc-Aurèle Guillemette has already been convicted in the past for sexual crimes.

In total, the settlement agreement offers $9,375,000 to victims of diocesan priests and other employees of the diocese of Amos.

Me Alain Arseneault believes that the Superior Court will ratify the agreement concluded with the diocese of Amos. He is now urging people who say they are victims to come forward.

The settlement agreement provides for a global envelope that will be distributed to all victims. It is important that they register as quickly as possible, as a deadline will be set in court. Beyond this date, appeals will be doomed to failure for people who would like to register or undertake an individual appeal, he explains.

People who wish to register can contact the Arsenault Dufresne Wee firm. The process is free and confidential.

In a written reaction issued late Friday, the diocese of&# x27;Amos says he is happy to have reached an amicable agreement with the victims.

This conclusion, if as we hope is ratified by the Court, will allow victims to avoid the inconvenience and delays that would result from holding a trial. We also hope that this regulation can help them continue their journey towards the most complete healing possible, mentions the organization in its press release.

The diocese of Amos also invites victims who have not yet come forward to register for it. ;collective action.

We would like to reiterate the extent to which we deplore the alleged acts which were the subject of this legal procedure. They are unworthy of ministers of the Church and totally contrary to the message of Christ. We are committed to doing everything in our power to ensure the safety of all people in the Church and to prevent such abuses from being committed in the future, expresses the diocese.

  • Gabriel Poirier (Consult the profile)Gabriel PoirierFollow
Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116