#childabuse | Saints’ email shielding raises concern in Catholic child abuse crisis

The New Orleans Saints and a group of about two dozen adult men who contend they were victims of sexual abuse as children are at odds in a civil litigation brought against the Archdiocese of New Orleans in the Civil District Court for the Parish of Orleans.

The men accused the Archdiocese of negligence, fraudulent concealment, public nuisance and vicarious liability related to the alleged sexual abuse of children. A central figure in the alleged abuse is George Brignac. Brignac, 85, was ordained as a deacon and employed by the Archdiocese as a teacher for many years.

Saints executives allegedly helped the Archdiocese manage external relations related to the Brignac controversy and related controversies. This assistance included emails that the Saints now refuse to turn over on account of confidentiality. Depending on the trajectory of the litigation, Saints executives could become witnesses in a high-profile clergy abuse case.

The moving around of an accused pedophile

Brignac is accused of being a serial child predator in the New Orleans area for decades. His superiors were repeatedly made aware of accusations and could have, at a minimum, prevented his continued access to children. Instead, they sent away with the knowledge that he could—and almost certainly would—abuse other children.

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