Four men allege sex abuse by NM priests - Albuquerque Journal

Four men allege sex abuse by NM priests

In lawsuits filed this month against the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, four more men allege that they were sexually abused as children by priests in New Mexico.

The suits, filed in state District Court in Albuquerque, name two priests as perpetrators: Sabine Griego and the late Wilfred Bombardier.

Both men were included on a list released by Archbishop John C. Wester of clergy who have been credibly accused of child sexual abuse. Griego, who was removed from the priesthood in 2005, still lives in northern New Mexico. He could not be reached for comment.

Celine Radigan, spokeswoman for the archdiocese, said she could not comment on pending lawsuits. But she said the archdiocese prays “for all who have been victims of the sad reality of sexual abuse.”

The complaints are the latest of approximately 74 lawsuits filed by attorneys Brad Hall and Levi Monagle in recent years. Monagle said roughly two-thirds of those lawsuits have been settled.

Three of the latest group of plaintiffs were abused as altar boys, while the fourth was abused while he was being recruited to serve as an altar boy, according to the lawsuits.

Reached for comment last week, Monagle said both priests are considered serial perpetrators. And according to court records, the archdiocese has reached settlements with at least 32 people who say they were abused by Griego as children.

Radigan said the archdiocese “continues to be vigilant and stands firm on its zero tolerance policy regarding sexual misconduct.”

Everyone working with children must be vetted and must pass a background check, she said, and a review board works to ensure those policies are followed.

Allegations contained in the lawsuits are as follows:

• A Las Vegas man says he was abused on hundreds of occasions from around ages 8 to 16 by Griego. The priest frequently used altar wine to intoxicate the boy before these assaults, and said that the wine “had to be consumed because it was blessed,” according to the lawsuit.

He says he has been forced to struggle with the reality of the abuse while many refuse to believe it happened, thanks in large part to the church’s “institutional secrecy and evasion of transparency and public accountability.”

• In the late 1960s, a Las Vegas man says, he was sexually abused by Griego while he was being recruited to serve as an altar boy. He says he was abused during an overnight trip while being forced to share a bed with the priest.

“Fr. Griego knew that Catholic children were trained to give unquestioning obedience to priests, and abused their trained obedience for his own sexual gratification,” the suit alleges.

• When he was an altar boy in the mid-1950s, an Albuquerque man says, Bombardier repeatedly sexually abused him. The abuse happened while he attended St. Mary’s and while serving as an altar boy at Blessed Sacrament.

The priest kissed and fondled him, he alleges, and said that “participating in this special altar boy training was his ‘ticket to heaven.’ ”

• Another man says he, too, was sexually abused as an altar boy in Albuquerque from ages 10 to 13 by Bombardier, both at Blessed Sacrament and during overnight camping trips in the Sandia Mountains.

The abuse, he alleges, was “fused with altar boy training, and with rhetoric to the effect of how much God loved (him).”

Home » News » Albuquerque News » Four men allege sex abuse by NM priests

Insert Question Legislature form in Legis only stories




Albuquerque Journal and its reporters are committed to telling the stories of our community.

• Do you have a question you want someone to try to answer for you? Do you have a bright spot you want to share?
   We want to hear from you. Please email yourstory@abqjournal.com

taboola desktop

ABQjournal can get you answers in all pages

 

Questions about the Legislature?
Albuquerque Journal can get you answers
Email addresses are used solely for verification and to speed the verification process for repeat questioners.
1
Ready for Rihanna? A look at five songs that ...
ABQnews Seeker
Journal Staff WriterI am not sure ... Journal Staff WriterI am not sure if you have heard, but there is a football game this ...
2
7 gun laws proposed in New Mexico
ABQnews Seeker
Gun control legislation is a priority ... Gun control legislation is a priority this year; here’s a round-up of what proposed laws would do, and where they’re at in the process.
3
Walmart shooting suspect pleads guilty to federal charges
ABQnews Seeker
EL PASO, Texas (AP) -- A ... EL PASO, Texas (AP) -- A Texas man pleaded guilty Wednesday to federal charges accusing him of killing nearly two dozen people in a ...
4
Man found slain at home in Northwest Albuquerque
ABQnews Seeker
A man was found dead inside ... A man was found dead inside a home Wednesday afternoon in Northwest Albuquerque. Gilbert Gallegos, an Albuquerque police spokesman, said officer responded just after ...
5
Emptying the Notebook: Lobos losing 3-point battle every night ...
ABQnews Seeker
Some extra notes, quotes and analysis ... Some extra notes, quotes and analysis from Tuesday night's UNM Lobos loss to the Nevada Wolf Pack in the Pit.
6
Walmart near Highland High School to close next month
ABQnews Seeker
The roughly 287 employees who work ... The roughly 287 employees who work at the store are eligible for transfers to nearby Walmart locations, the company said.
7
House committee endorses automatic voter registration in New Mexico
ABQnews Seeker
In-person transactions at MVD offices would ... In-person transactions at MVD offices would register new voters, and Election Day would be a school holiday
8
Alford, Nevada break Lobo hearts yet again
ABQnews Seeker
Kenan Blackshear's final-second shot pushed Nevada ... Kenan Blackshear's final-second shot pushed Nevada past the UNM Lobos and continued Steve Alford's dominance over his former team.
9
Police investigating death in International District apartment complex
ABQnews Seeker
Homicide detectives have been called out ... Homicide detectives have been called out to the scene.