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Three plaintiffs filed suit today against the Archdiocese of Chicago and one of its former priests, Norbert Maday, for incidents of sexual abuse which took place when Maday was assigned to St. Leo Catholic Church in Chicago, and later, to St. Louis de Montfort Catholic Church in Oak Lawn.
The suit also names convicted pedophile Thomas Hacker, who while working at St. Louis de Montfort Parish in Oak Lawn at the same time as Maday, also sexually assaulted two of the plaintiffs. The incidents took place in the timeframe of 1967 to ’73, when the boys’ ages ranged from nine to fourteen. The case was filed in the Circuit Court of Cook County by the Chicago-based law firm of [[title]], P.C.
The sixteen-count complaint accuses Maday and Hacker of numerous instances of sexual abuse and battery, and the Archdiocese of Chicago of breaching its duty to protect the children in its care. The Archdiocese is also accused of fraudulent misrepresentation and concealment for failing to disclose what it knew or should have known about pedophile priests and school employees in the Archdiocese, and about Fr. Maday and Thomas Hacker in particular.
Maday was assigned to St. Leo’s from 1966 to ’69, and to St. Louis de Montfort from 1969 to ’77. The suit reveals that in 1972, Maday was the designated liaison between the church and its Boy Scout troop; in that capacity, he supervised the activities of Thomas Hacker after Hacker became Scoutmaster of Troop 1600. When Hacker served as Scoutmaster of Troop 1600, he was a twice-convicted pedophile.
The suit alleges that besides his role as scoutmaster, Hacker also functioned as the supervisor of parish youths and sports programs. So despite his criminal past – including a 1970 felony conviction in Indiana for assault and battery of a Boy Scout with intent to gratify sexual desires, and a 1971 conviction in Illinois on charges involving indecent liberties with a child – Hacker served within the St. Louis de Montfort parish as scoutmaster and sports coach.
In point of fact, Hacker’s convictions don’t tell his entire sordid story. Hacker is described by author Patrick Boyle as, “the most prolific molester in Scouting: He moved among troops and schools for 25 years, molesting, by his estimate, ‘well over 100’ boys.” Hacker was again convicted, in 1989, of five counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault against minors, and sentenced to two consecutive 50-year prison terms in Illinois.
Two plaintiffs in the suit filed today were abused by both Maday and Hacker.
Christopher Hurley, representing the plaintiffs, noted that, “Once again we see evidence of the Archdiocese’s painful, decades-long practice of publicly sweeping the issue of pedophile priests under the carpet. At the same time, new evidence shows how the Archdiocese went out of its way to protect its own, at the cost of protecting those most vulnerable, the children in its care. Justice for these victims, now adults, is long overdue.”
Hurley’s partner, Mark McKenna, added, “For a long period of time, two major institutions in this country, the Catholic Church and the Boy Scouts, had a serious problem with pedophiles in their ranks preying on those in their care. Both institutions chose to deal with the problem in secrecy, with poor results. As a result, lives were forever changed. They can’t take back the past, but they must take steps to repair the damage, and operate far more transparently in the future.”