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Catholic school hit with abuse lawsuit

MONTREAL, Sept. 1 (UPI) -- A former student says he is suing a Montreal school for the deaf, alleging sexual abuse at the hands of Catholic brothers who taught there.

Serge d'Arcy, 54, is hoping Quebec Superior Court allows his class action lawsuit, which names four members of the Clercs de St. Viateur as having committed the abuse when he was nine, The (Montreal) Gazette reported Wednesday.

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He is seeking a total of $600,000 in damages for abuse he is alleged to have suffered between 1967 and 1982 -- $250,000 for loss of revenue, $250,000 for physical and psychological suffering and $100,000 in punitive damages.

The suit would ask for $100,000 in punitive damages for each person joining the class action plus other compensation to be determined on a case-by-case basis, the newspaper said.

After talking with another student who said he was similarly abused, D'Arcy said he decided to sue the Catholic brothers who "took advantage of (the students') vulnerability and innocence ... with no way of defending themselves and being far from parents."

D'Arcy alleges various sexual acts were inflicted on him by the brothers, The Gazette said. He said he was also forced to strip before being beaten on his buttocks with a wooden spoon.

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When he was 20, d'Arcy allegedly began abusing alcohol and drugs, could not support himself financially or keep a job, was fired regularly because of his emotional state and instability, and attempted suicide three times, the newspaper said.

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