HARTFORD, Conn., May 22 (UPI) -- The Connecticut Supreme Court decided Friday to open legal files in 23 lawsuits claiming abuse by Roman Catholic priests in the Bridgeport diocese.
The documents include depositions given by Cardinal Edward Egan, who was bishop of Bridgeport when most of the suits were filed, The Hartford Courant reported. Egan went on to become archbishop of New York and retired last month.
The court allowed 15 depositions to remain sealed, finding they had not been submitted as legal documents. But the justices, in a 4-1 ruling, granted a request by four newspapers to make the rest of the files public.
The lawsuits were settled in 2001, and the Courant, The Boston Globe, The New York Times and The Washington Post went to court the next year seeking access to the files. This is the second ruling by the state Supreme Court during the ensuing court battle.
In addition to the depositions, the files contain internal memos and other documents that allegedly show a pattern of covering up for abusive priests.