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11 abuse lawsuits filed in Maine after state loosens statute of limitations


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The number of people suing over priest abuse is growing with three more lawsuits on Monday, bringing the total to nearly a dozen since the state loosened the statute of limitations last year.

The latest lawsuits focus on the Rev. John J. Curran, who allegedly abused three victims who were between 11 and 14 between 1962 and 1964 while working at a parish in Augusta, according to their attorney. Two others already sued over alleged sexual misconduct by Curran while working in Old Town.

Curran, who died in 1976, was featured in a 2004 report by the Maine attorney general that detailed dozens of cases of alleged sexual abuse by Roman Catholic clergy.

4 LAWSUITS FILED AGAINST MAINE PRIEST THAT CLAIMS HE ABUSED 3 MEN, A WOMAN

Maine first agreed to remove its statute of limitations for childhood sexual abuse cases in 2000, but that meant victims couldn't sue for older crimes. Changes to state law last summer made it possible for Mainers to seek legal action for claims that were previously expired.

So far, 11 lawsuits allege the Diocese of Portland knew about abuse and failed to stop it or warn parishioners. A diocese spokesperson didn't immediately return an email seeking comment.

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