Judge clears Portland Diocese of clergy abuse case

Associated Press/August 3, 2012

Augusta, Maine -- A Maine judge has ruled that the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland did not conceal prior sex abuse allegations against a priest accused of molesting a young boy in the late 1980s.

The now 38-year-old Augusta man who made the abuse claim said in a lawsuit that the diocese covered up previous sex abuse complaints against the Rev. Raymond Melville. The alleged victim says he was abused as a boy between September 1986 and June 1988.

Judge Donald Marden wrote in a decision released this week that "it is undisputed" that the diocese received no sexual abuse complaints against Melville prior to 1990.

Melville was previously ordered to pay the Augusta man $4.2 million.

The alleged victim's lawyer tells the Kennebec Journal that the decision will be appealed.

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