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Cheryl Buchanan
Cheryl Buchanan
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First Three Trials are Scheduled Against Salesian Order in Los Angeles

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Despite the fact that all of the other Defendants have settled a total of more than 500 cases that were pending in the coordinated litigation known as “Clergy I” in the Los Angeles Archdiocese, the Salesian Order of priests and brothers remains on a dangerous course of denial. At this time, Kiesel, Boucher & Larson is preparing for not only its first trial (scheduled to begin April 14, 2008) involving perpetrators Fr. Titian “Jim” Miani, Fr. Larry Lorenzoni, and Br. Ralph Murguia, but also has trial dates set for July 2008 involving Br. Anthony Juarez and November 2008 involving Br. Ernie Martinez. Miani, Lorenzoni, Murguia, Juarez, and Martinez, all sexuallly abused children while assigned at St. John Bosco in Bellflower, California.

Additional trial dates are expected to be set against the Salesians involving perpetrators Br. John Verhart and Br. Mark Epperson. While Verhart also abused multiple children at St. John Bosco in Bellflower, Epperson molested a boy at another nearby Southern California School, St. Don Bsoco Technical School. Our Plaintiff in that case committed suicide in 2003.

Many in the Church and its victims will continue to disagree about the exact extent, cause, and the current state of the pedophilia crisis and its future. But, most will agree that awareness has brought some progress, although they may not want to give credit to one another. Regardless, the Salesian leadership disrespects both the victims and the Archdiocese in its current stance. Furthermore, they make a mockery of their alleged mission to follow St. John Bosco, a mission to serve vulnerable youth. Rather than acknowledge the egregious sins of its past and make moves towards a better future, the Salesians continue to do more damage with their aggressive defense. I wonder how many of their parishioners and student body parents are even aware of this?

The Salesian Order continues to run St. John Bosco, St. Don Bosco, and Salesian High School in Southern California. In Northern California, they run another school also called Salesian High School as well as St. Peter and Paul Parish, and central headquarters at 100 Franking Street in San Francisco.