The Archdiocese of Baltimore is seeking Chapter 11 bankruptcy as it faces several child sexual abuse lawsuits.
The oldest Catholic archdiocese in the U.S. declared bankruptcy on Friday to minimize liability for potential damages and protect its assets, according to theBaltimore Sun.
The paper states that Archbishop William E. Lori had indicated the possibility of this move in a letter to over 500,000 parishioners on Sept. 5.
In April, a report on the Baltimore Archdiocese by Maryland Attorney General Anthony G. Brown revealed 600 cases of child sex abuse over the past 60 years by 156 current or former Catholic clergy, seminarians, deacons, members of Catholic religious orders, teachers at Catholic schools and other employees.
The report followed four years of investigations conducted via grand jury subpoenas. Under state law, those proceedings and findings are kept confidential.
Lawyers for the state petitioned the court for permission to release their findings, an effort the Archdiocese of Baltimore declared late last year it would not oppose.
In February, Baltimore Circuit Court Judge Robert Taylor ruled the report is in the public's interest and should be released.
He ordered the report be partially redacted before its release. Taylor ordered prosecutors to redact the names and titles of 37 people in the report. Those people are accused of either committing or enabling abuse and will be contacted to review their sections of the report. Depending on their responses, Taylor may restore their names and allow re-publication of the report.
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