Lawyer Accuses Archdiocese of Trying to Dupe Creditors

by San Antonio Attorney

The Archdiocese of St.  Paul and Minneapolis is allegedly concealing its own assets from the bankruptcy courts.

The Archdiocese allegedly painted over their sign outside the St. Mary’s Catholic Cemetery in Minneapolis to remove the “St.  Paul and Minneapolis Archdiocese” words.

Jeff Anderson, a lawyer representing clergy abuse victims, said that this move concludes how the archdiocese hid its net worth in the bankruptcy court.

The archdiocese declared its net worth of $45 million in the bankruptcy court.  However, Anderson claimed that this was not true and the archdiocese’s worth was more than $1.7 billion.

Anderson added that the committee, which represents the survivors of clergy abuse, filing a motion in court, requesting to consolidate the assets of the archdiocese, in order to have a more realistic value of its assets.

Anderson described the Archdiocese’s moves as a ‘massive scheme’ since it serves to fool creditors, which will eventually result in the denial of claims.

In response, Archbishop Bernard Hebda released a statement, revealing that the archdiocese has been trying its best to make use of its assets and has complied to terms with the bankruptcy court.

Hebda added that the archdiocese is set file a reorganization plan with the bankruptcy court within this week.

The survivor’s committee argued that the archdiocese did not cite other financial connections to other entities such as cemeteries, parishes and the Catholic Finance Corporation.

Last January 2015, the archdiocese filed for bankruptcy protection, following abuse claims from victims.  The filed case is in the process of mediation and any advancement of the negotiation is strictly confidential.

The archdiocese’s move of filing bankruptcy meant that the mediation talks among both parties have not worked out, according to Anderson.

Anderson said that the archdiocese false revealed their limited assets, which in turn will convince the court that they can’t cover 10 percent of the claims filed by their victims.

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