Jason Berry just alerted me to this piece in the NCR:
A Rhode Island Superior Court judge has dismissed a lawsuit against the scandal-ridden Legionaries of Christ that had alleged the religious order defrauded a wealthy widow out of millions of dollars. Yet the judge’s 39-page ruling details dubious fundraising tactics of Legionaries priests and seemingly opens a door for appeal.
“The transfer of millions of dollars worth of assets -- through will, trust, and gifts -- from a steadfastly spiritual, elderly woman to her trusted but clandestinely dubious spiritual leaders raises a red flag to this Court,” Superior Court Judge Michael Silverstein of Providence, R.I., wrote in a summary judgment Sept. 7.
Pope Benedict ordered the scandal-battered Legionaries into a Vatican receivership in 2010, and appointed Cardinal Velasio De Paolis as delegate, or overseer of the order.
Silverstein dismissed the lawsuit against the Legionaries of Christ, Fr. Anthony Bannon and Bank of America on Sept. 7, ruling that Mary Lou Dauray, the niece of the late Gabrielle Mee, lacked the legal standing to sue.
Dauray alleged through her attorney Bernard Jackvony -- a former lieutenant governor of Rhode Island -- that, according to the judge’s decision, Legionary priests in America “unduly influenced and fraudulently induced Mrs. Mee into giving approximately $60 million to the defendants -- particularly the Legionaries of Christ.”
Jackvony told NCR that Dauray could not comment because of a protective order. He said that an appeal was under discussion: “We’re evaluating the best way to proceed in light of the judge’s decision that there was significant evidence of undue influence and fraud.”
[read the rest at NCR]
Isn't that interesting? The Legion preys on a childless widow, and then -- despite all the evidence of corruption and deceit -- the case is thrown out because there is no one with the legal standing to sue. More diabolical cleverness.