- Associated Press - Tuesday, April 25, 2017

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) - An ethics complaint against a Rhode Island Supreme Court justice has moved forward.

The state Ethics Commission on Tuesday voted 5-2 to find probable cause that Justice Francis Flaherty violated the ethics code by failing to report his service on the board of a Catholic lawyers’ group.

The preliminary step means there is enough evidence to hold a hearing on whether he violated ethics rules.

Flaherty said outside the meeting that he doesn’t think he violated the rules, but had no further comment.

The complaint was filed last year by a woman who sued the Diocese of Providence after saying she was abused by Brendan Smyth, a notorious pedophile priest. Her lawsuit was dismissed due to the statute of limitations. Flaherty wrote a Supreme Court decision in June rejecting her appeal.



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