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GB Catholic Diocese ordered to pay $500K to Nevada sex abuse victim


GREEN BAY, WI (WTAQ) - A jury in Las Vegas has ordered the Green Bay Catholic Diocese to pay a half-million dollars to a sex abuse victim.

The jury believed the man, when he said the diocese knew that the Reverend John Patrick Feeney was a child molester when they transferred him to Vegas – but they never told parishioners there, and it allowed Feeney to molest again.

The man’s lawyer, Jeff Anderson, said the victim reported the sexual assault when he was a youngster, but nobody believed him. Anderson said the man came forward again after he heard about others were assaulted by Feeney, who has since been defrocked.

Feeney was criminally convicted in 2004 of molesting Todd and Troy Merryfield at a Freedom Catholic church, and he served eight years of a 15-year sentence.

The Merryfields won $700,000 earlier this year, after a jury agreed that the church committed fraud in that molestation case. But a judge threw out the award after the church dug up proof that a juror was biased.

The case is headed toward another trial next year.