Friday, January 4, 2013

'But what have I done to you lately?' -Zacchaeus

Two years ago today our Archdiocsese of Milwaukee filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy reorganization. Our Archdiocesan weekly recently updated us on that status of proceedings, Judge disallows 2 claims; will rule on 5 more by Jan. 24. Regarding the disallowed claims,
'One claimant failed to demonstrate that fraud had been committed by the archdiocese, while the other suspected fraud but did not act upon it, according to [U.S. Bankruptcy Court Judge Susan V.] Kelley.'
Regarding the other five claims,
'The archdiocese objected to two other claims related to the statute of limitations, noting that given the amount of publicity surrounding clergy sexual abuse since 2002 claimants should have known how much time they had in which to make a claim.
'Attorneys will file briefs on those and two other claims in early January in preparation for the Jan. 24 hearing. Among questions that will need to be answered at that time are what are the legal standards for those claims and do those standards apply here. Another claim that will be considered that day is subject to discovery, i.e., disclosure of documents relevant to the case.'
The article quotes a December 13th statement from Jerry Topczewski, chief of staff for Archbishop Jerome E. Listecki, which conflates two issues.
'...the issue before the court is whether the archdiocese perpetrated a fraud. It did not and the only way to reach a resolution in the Chapter 11 is to have a definitive answer on the number of eligible claims.'
Not only is the issue before the court often not the merits of claims of fraud, but that is because our Archdiocese tries to defeat claims on other grounds whenever possible so that the court does not reach the issue of 'whether the archdiocese perpetrated a fraud.'

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