Cardinal's nephew says priest abused him

June 18, 2009 at 9:45 PM

WILMINGTON, Del., June 18 (UPI) -- A nephew of the late Cardinal John O'Connor has filed a lawsuit alleging he was sexually molested by a priest at a Catholic school in Philadelphia.

The suit says the Rev. John McDevitt, a religion teacher at Father Judge High School for Boys, abused Richard Green for six months in 1990 and 1991, the New York Post reported Thursday. At the time, O'Connor, who died in 2000, was the most powerful Catholic leader in the United States as archbishop of New York.

"I think this situation shows no child is safe from these priests," J. Michael Reck, Green's lawyer, said. "If the nephew of Cardinal O'Connor can be abused, no one is safe."

Green filed the lawsuit in Delaware. In legal papers, he says McDevitt told him he would go to hell without extra tutoring and then regularly molested him, usually in a classroom.

The suit accuses church officials of covering up for McDevitt. In addition to financial compensation, Green wants the church to be ordered to release the names of abusive priests and details on how the church handled their cases.

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