Montana Catholic diocese files for bankruptcy in face of 362 abuse claims

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A Roman Catholic diocese in Montana has filed for bankruptcy, the latest move to resolve a long-running court fight against 300-plus plaintiffs who allege the church covered up the years of childhood abuse they suffered.

Three-hundred and sixty-two plaintiffs joined separate lawsuits in 2011, accusing church officials of abusing them when they were children, between the years of 1930 and 1980 — and that the church knew of the abuse, CNN reported.

Plaintiffs also allege the Diocese of Helena actively protected some of the church officials who were involved in the abuse, CNN said.

The case has been stretching for months. Various mediation attempts have failed, and it’s hoped that the bankruptcy will bring about an acceptable resolution, diocese spokesman Dan Bartleson said, CNN reported.

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