Thursday, February 23, 2017

APURON FOUND NOT GUILTY

Posted By Webster

Yes, this is the likely outcome if Walter Denton, Roy Quintanilla, and Roland Sondia do not testify before the Canonical Trial of Apuron being speedily conducted by the Vatican. This will be a blow of biblical proportions to the Catholic community of Guam, and to all the men and women who have, with great sacrifice, lobbied, fought, and supported these three victims so that Truth and Justice may once again prevail in our beloved Church in Guam.

The CCOG, LFM, and the SLM, the SILENT MAJORITY, will have fought in vain, only to watch in horror as the lure of money and power have overcome their Holy Crusade to clean up the Church, by having Apuron found guilty and defrocked, and by having justice for Walter, Roy, and Roland.


Have these three noble and gallant men of courage and valor forgotten what they said in public, when the prospect of a bill lifting the statute of limitation was not even a prospect, that all they wanted was to be able to confront Apuron, to have him apologize, to be acknowledged by the Church, and to ensure that by telling their stories, future altar boys are protected and shielded?

Well, that opportunity for them is here, now, to testify before a Canonical Tribunal, led by the strict, no-nonsense, and conservative Cardinal Burke, who will no doubt find Apuron guilty, and defrock him, if Walter, Roy, and Roland will only testify.

Why? Because when one hears the stories of these three men, of what happened to them as boys, you will believe them, especially after one hears the cries and pleas of a suffering and guilt-ridden mother, Doris Concepcion, of the fourth victim, now deceased, Sonny Quinata. The testimonies of these three men will make or break the case against Apuron.

So, why has Walter, Roy, and Roland changed their minds? Has the lure of money from their pending lawsuits overcome their sense of justice, righteousness, and goal to rid the Church of Apuron? I pray not. Or, is it that their attorney, David Lujan, who distrusts all foreigners and state-siders, wants to unreasonably safeguard his interest in extracting millions from his civil lawsuits regardless of whether Apuron is found guilty of crimes by the Church and is set free? I am not saying that the victims should not be compensated, as they should be, but I am saying that they should also confront Apuron as they promised they would if given the opportunity.

Yes, Apuron will be set free if he is found not guilty, and although he will still have to face the civil lawsuits, does he really care at that point? No, he could just retire, live comfortably somewhere in the Mediterranean, and ignore the civil lawsuits. Why? Because even if a civil court finds for Walter, Roy, and Roland, Apuron can simply file bankruptcy. He is judgement proof.

David Lujan will also not care at all because he knows he cannot collect against Apuron. But he knows he can collect millions against the Archdiocese of Agana, with all its assets in land, buildings(schools and churches), and other properties, the same assets that so many Catholics have contributed and help built these past decades. That is the prize David Lujan seeks, one that will pay him millions.

And David Lujan cannot argue that allowing his clients to testify, without his presence, before a canonical trial may compromise his clients because Apuron's canon lawyers may use their testimony against them in the civil case. David Lujan is under the wrong impression. If he did his research, if he hasn't already, he will know that anything said or disclosed in a canonical trial is protected by the Pontifical Secret (to protect witnesses, victims and the process from outside or civil intervention) so that no one, not even Apuron's Canon Lawyers (Apuron's civil lawyer, Jackie Terlaje, is also not allowed to be present) can disclose anything, and that the complete separation of a canonical trial from any civil trial will shield a canonical trial from subpoena or other civil measures. A canonical trial is not like the adversarial trail we see on television. The canon lawyers are not even allowed to ask questions. Only Cardinal Burke can, and there are no limits to what a witness can say. A witness is allowed to speak freely and openly, without fear of retaliation or compromise.

But there is still HOPE. David Lujan can still do the right thing. Walter, Roy, and Roland still have time to testify, To Do The Right Thing. Cardinal Burke will return to Guam or meet them anywhere in the world to take their testimony. We are counting on them.

Otherwise, Apuron will be found Not Guilty, and as he relaxes on some beach drinking his pina colada during his retirement years, living off his ill gotten assets donated over the years by the Catholic faithful of Guam, he will toast David Lujan and our three gallant victims for breaking the case against him.

In the meantime, we will be paying for Apuron's heinous crimes and sins for the rest of our lives, without Justice and the Truth being served.

Blessed Mother, pray for us.

69 comments:

  1. I said all along that Roland's refusal to testify will exonerate Apuron.

    He probably won't return to Guam. His Neocat BOG buddies in sunny California will find an upscale beach home for his retirement there.

    Guam's victims need Superlawyers like Minnesota's Jeff Anderson, Boston's Mitch Garabedian or the billionaire ex-altar boy in Los Angeles whose name escapes me. They know exactly what they're up against and they literally never lose. Those three alone are responsible for most of the $3 billion in US abuse settlements awarded. Most of them were paid out of Court. Lujan is way behind the power curve.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The main Los Angeles victims' Superlawyer is ex-altar boy Ray Boucher.

      Reportedly, the L.A. abuse cases Boucher's law firm won paid over $600 million to the victims, mainly out of Court. He had at least 5 more major cases against Southern California religious Orders still in process as of early last year. The Orders refused to release Court-ordered personnel records until 2015.

      I don't know if Boucher was abused as an altar boy. He never said anything about it.

      Delete
    2. In 1977, almost a decade before the first abuse case became nationally known, my father tried to report our pastor to LA Archbishop TIMOTHY Manning. My father was an old fashioned Catholic who held priests next to the Saints. But the evidence was irrefutable. All my dad wanted was for the Archbishop to talk to the pastor and tell him to stop. However, he was thrown out of the chancery. It broke my father but the incident made me a warrior. If the LA Archbishop would have just listened in 1977, how different all of this could be.

      Delete
    3. I can easily believe that 8:44 AM.

      Bishop Timothy Manning was criminal Cardinal Roger Mahony's mentor. Knowing he was terminally ill, Manning pushed Rome into making evil Mahony his co-adjutor. Because of Manning, the massive archdiocese was plunged into 26 years of protected pedophile clergy under extremely powerful Marxist Mahony.

      Both Manning and Mahony were fully aware of the pending catastrophe in Los Angeles. Before coming to L.A. from Stockton, diabolic Mahony surrendered his California social worker's license so he wouldn't be legally required to report pedophiles to police. That's why he got away with so much for so long.

      Arrogant Mahony also played musical perverts with equally corrupt Mexican bishops. A lot of L.A.'s known pedophile priests were sent there by his Mexican bishop pals and allowed to escape back home unpunished if they were caught molesting children. The archdiocese was sued for their transgressions anyway.

      Creepy Bishop Manning Confirmed us in grade school before he became a Cardinal. None of us liked him, and vice-versa. Manning also ordained a good friend of mine years later after he got his Red Hat. That's the last time I saw him. My priest-friend didn't like him or Mahony either.



      Delete
    4. I was confirmed by Manning. I also was part of his entourage to Rome for the canonization of St. John Neumann in 1976 and the consistory of cardinals in 1977. The reason was that my pastor was a classmate of Manning's, so he was in his inner circle. And I was the pastor's "prize," thinking that I had a vocation to the priesthood. So my pastor took me on these trips. I've said elsewhere about the uncomfortable feeling I got being around my pastor - especially since we often shared the same room on these trips. He must have known I was not "receptive" since I did not respond to his initial advances. At the time I did not know that's what they were. It just felt wrong: holding on to my arm while walking and stuff like that.

      Delete
    5. Tim, glad you escaped your Pastor. When kids ask me what to do if priests attempt to abuse them, I tell them to simply deck the perverts and call the cops because they're dealing with criminals, not priests.

      Back in the day, powerful Pastors in a SoCal Cardinal's "inner circle" gave the chosen few parishes tremendous advantages and prestige. Both my Catholic grade school and high school were in that cushy position.

      Delete
    6. The Stockton, CA diocese was sued into bankruptcy because of abuse cases covered up by L.A.'s future cardinal Roger Mahony and his late predecessor Bishop Guilfoyle who was allegedly gay.

      Stockton just came out of bankruptcy a week or so ago after years of megabucks commotion. The case of laicized, imprisoned and deported psycho Oliver O'Grady is probably their most notorious one.

      Delete
  2. There is no doubt that all of this could have been avoided had the Vatican guys did a bit more homework. Even the noticing of the witnesses was very much slipshod. True, Attorney Lujan also could have done more on his end, but we don't know that he didn't. Maybe he did and he saw that there was nothing to gain by cooperating with Rome. He certainly has every right to distrust the institutional Church.

    However, the consequences of a stalemate are exactly as the title states. While Apuron could be reprimanded for his financial misdeeds and his abuse of priests, just to name a few items on a very long list, the only way he could become a candidate for defrocking (laicized), would be through the sex abuse allegations. At 40 years distance, it still is a "he said-he said" situation, no matter how powerful the alleged victims' testimonies may be on paper.

    Even more than the press conferences at which Apuron's victims first revealed their personal horrors, those testimonies as presented at the public hearings for Bill 326 were so overwhelmingly powerful that the entire legislature not only voted unanimously to pass the bill, but the bill was moved immediately to the Floor for the next legislative session.

    That would NOT have happened had those testimonies only been published. The flesh and blood and tears of those whose young lives were broken by the man they trusted most, their pastor, was simply too powerful to dismiss as anything other than the flesh and blood and tears TRUTH.

    We have worked terribly hard for this moment. Personally, I have sacrificed over three years of my life, beginning with simply wanting to provide Fr. Paul some support (never realizing it would lead to the revelations by "the Agat boys"). It's true what Webster says. Apuron won't be hurt much by losing the civil suit, but the archdiocese will. Up till now, most of us have been willing to pay that price (since it is WE who are the archdiocese), but only as long as we believed Apuron could be brought to justice. As of now, I am deeply concerned that he won't be.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unfortunately, the almighty Vatican with its bottomless pockets doesn't have to do much of anything. They have the fire. All you have is bleeding-raw meat.

      Delete
  3. Wow... all this effort for nothing... on the contrary... it is giving Apuron a window of credibility that he didn't have before... they should have never hesitated in the first place.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yes. I don't think Apuron even imagined this stroke of luck. We all need to pray hard that the RIGHT thing will be done.

      Delete
  4. On one hand you can understand Atty. Lujan's efforts to protect his client's rights. This is a sacred duty for an attorney. On the other hand you can see the potential for Apuron to escape justice and being held accountable for his crimes. This would be rubbing salt in a wound.

    There are victims who have chosen to remain silent through all this turmoil. We understand your pain, trauma, shame, humiliation, etc. If you can find the strength and courage please contact Cardinal Burke and give him your testimony. It does not have to be made public.


    True story: In 6th or 7th grade a classmate confided in me that he was molested by Fr. Broulliard. I was in shock. I didn't know what to do. I said nothing. I told no one.

    Thinking back on the situation I could have told the school principal. I could have told my parents. Would they have believed me? I would hope so but I don't know. If I said something back then Fr. Broulliard might have been stopped. Other children could have been saved from a lifetime of pain. This is something I have to live with. My inaction had consequences. A monster was able to continue his crimes. For that I am deeply sorry.

    My classmate has not come forward at this time. I don't know if he ever will. I pray for him and all victims May they find healing and peace.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. please indicate to our readers contact address for Cardinal Burke.

      Delete
    2. Mr. Andrew Camacho, "in the good ole days (before Jungle Watch), our priests could do NO wrong! Never mind the whispers at fiestas, rosaries, etc. And if you did go to someone of authority (your parents, teachers, etc) with the news that your classmate shared with you, you will not be taken seriously, told not to repeat such vile stories about the representatives of God, etc. Pretty much the same treatment that Doris Concepcion gave her son who was not just repeating someone else's story, but was, in fact, telling his own true story and seeking help! If your parents are still around today, ask them if they could honestly tell you what would they have done "in the good ole days" with the story of your classmate.
      They should not be ashamed if they said they would have not done anything. That's just the way it was "in the good ole days" and, hopefully, it's not the way it is anymore.

      Delete
  5. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)February 23, 2017 at 5:52 AM

    Have Cardinal Burke and canonical group reached Arizona for Walter’s and Doris' testimony? My understanding from reading about the canonical trial's deposition/interview schedule is that they will "work their way east" after leaving Guam last week. Roy Quintanilla is in Hawaii. Walter and Doris are in the southwest U.S. mainland. If Roland missed an in-person deposition/interview with the canonical trial group, perhaps Roy and Walter may do differently. I know I may piss off Mr. Lujan by even writing this. The focus of the questions will be on the details provided by the victims/survivors. The details will put credibility to the sexual abuse allegations. The reactions, composure of the witnesses will also have an impact on the tribunal. If the testimony is the truth, it will not waiver whether the testimony is given in an ecclesiastical court or a civil court. The truth is the truth.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)February 23, 2017 at 6:39 AM

      I know Mr. Lujan has pointed out the imbalance of the fact that Abp. Apuron’s “defense lawyer” (advocate), Fr. Conn, being present at the deposition/interview while his clients won’t have an “advocate” of their own present. Technically, Fr. Conn does not cross-examine the witnesses but can request that Cardl Burke ask specific questions that are relevant to the getting to the truth. Basically, Cardl Burke will be the one asking the questions. I know much has been written in JungleWatch and elsewhere about Carld Burke and various labels attached to him. I’m looking at this canonical trial as just that --- a trial. Regardless of the labels attached to Cardl Burke or what he and the tribunal conclude in the end and regardless of the outcome of the trial, the victims/survivors and those of us who support them should know that they gave it their all to effect justice in ecclesiastic court. The worst situation is to look back only to say I shoulda, woulda, coulda. Many times life doesn’t allow us a chance for a do-over.

      Delete
    2. To clarify, Conn is from the office of the promoter of justice and thus the prosecutor. Apuron has two neocat attornies, one of whom is teaching at RMS.

      Delete
    3. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)February 23, 2017 at 8:23 AM

      Sorry, I got that mixed up. I thought Fr. Conn was Apuron's advocate. Was one of Apuron's advocate present in the proceedings?

      Delete
    4. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)February 23, 2017 at 8:46 AM

      Tim, here is the cast of characters according to Post files:

      (1) Burke - the presiding judge
      (2) Rev. Robert Geisinger - prosecutor (Promoter of Justice; he prosecutes cases on behalf of the Church)
      (3) Rev. James Conn - Apuron's advocate (Apuron's defense lawyer)
      (4) Wachs - the tribunal's notary and court reporter

      Delete
    5. Tim is correct. The Promoter of Justice is Fr. Coon and he is there to prosecute Apuron. Apuron was allowed to have his own canon lawyers there. No civil lawyer such as David Lujan or Jackie Terlaje is allowed in ecclesiastical proceedings. It is the nature of the canonical trail. It is not an adversarial process, where you have two sides duking it out in front of a neutral judge. In fact, the judge in a canonical trial is not neutral. He is there to work with the victims, to ascertain their credibility, and then to rule. This is why it is imperative that the victims testify.

      Delete
    6. At Rose. Roy and Walter also declined per their attorney's instructions.

      Delete
    7. Yes. Apuron's canon lawyers were present.

      Delete
    8. Rose de los Reyes (Seattle, WA)February 23, 2017 at 10:38 AM

      Thank you Tim and Anon 9:11. Based on your clarification, the way I understand the roles of the canonical trial players who came to Guam for the depositions/interviews of the victims/survivors, of that group, Fr. Conn is the one who could have most used the testimonies of the victims/survivors to help him make the case for the Church against Abp. Apuron, and by extension, make the case for the victims/survivors. In effect, the victims/survivors are his (the Church’s) witnesses against Apuron and Fr. Conn could have used their testimonies. Apuron’s canon lawyer, of course, would not want the victims/survivors to testify. The part about the investigation on Guam where the victims/survivors didn’t testify --- played into the pro-Apuron hands. Darn! Hopefully, this was offset by information from other witnesses who did testify to whatever they testified about (which I hope are information that is more damaging to Apuron), but even with that, there is nothing that could have been more compelling than to the judge than the testimonies provided directly by the victims/survivors. They speak the truth and would have probably been able to provide the details that would have been asked of them to demonstrate that their experiences are not of fiction. As I wrote before, the truth doesn’t waver regardless of to whom it is told, where it is told, and how many times it is told.

      Delete
    9. Parallel proceedings under canon law (part 1)

      I have commented on the existence of “parallel proceedings” in the secular sphere, e.g., criminal, civil, and military. And in my ethics comment below, I note the parallel nature of the District Court of Guam cases with the Tribunal of the First Instance in the Catholic canon law judicial system.

      Attorney Rose de los Reyes has previously pointed out the existence of parallel proceedings within the canon law system, such as criminal and civil. What had not been clear to me earlier, despite Frenchie alluding to it, and unlike the English-based common law system, is that it appears under canon law, a single hearing may serve both tracks of a parallel proceeding.

      Contrary to my earlier erroneous inference from a report by the Guam Daily Post, Father Conn is not working on behalf of, with, or as the Procurator-Advocate (defense counsel for Archbishop Apuron).

      However, that does not necessarily mean that Father Conn is working on behalf of, with, or as the Promoter of Justice (prosecutor), either.

      In fact, reporter Haired V. Eugenio of the Guam Pacific Daily News on 7 February 2017 quoted canon law expert Patrick J. Wall as predicting that Father Conn would likely serve as the Pope’s “Auditor”:

      “Wall said Pope Francis has two options in the Apuron trial — administrative action or judicial action — after the pope's appointed auditor, or investigator, gathers and presents the facts. Wall said a likely candidate to serve as the pope's auditor is Reverend James Conn, a professor of Canon Law at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome, and professor of the Practice of Canon Law at Boston College.

      “If the pope takes administrative action, Wall said, he can instruct the Congregation for Bishops to order Apuron to a life of prayer and penance in a Capuchin monastery far from Guam.

      * * * *

      “If the pope takes judicial action, he may instruct the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith and Cardinal Gerhard Mueller, as Prefect, to proceed, following the Sacramentum Santitatis Tutela, Wall said.

      “‘Mueller will then appoint Chicago Jesuit, Reverend Robert Geisinger S.J., J.C.D. as promoter of justice to instruct the matter,’ Wall said. ‘Archbishop Apuron will be informed in writing of the charges and advised to retain a canonist — a canon lawyer who will defend him and submit paperwork on his behalf to the Vatican.’

      “Wall said, ‘The Promoter of Justice or his delegate will build on the auditors’ investigation and delve deeper into the facts and circumstances, including taking depositions and gathering documents from Guam.’”

      Delete
    10. Parallel proceedings under canon law (part 2)

      Here is how I interpret the foregoing expert commentary. (I am not a canon lawyer, so if anyone has more authoritative guidance, such as a citation to the CJC, I am all ears.)

      When a U.S. Attorney is aware of evidence suggesting health care fraud, close to the outset, he or she can decide to launch a criminal prosecution, a civil suit, or both.

      When a military Convening Authority learns of a breach of military discipline, options include Article 15 Non-Judicial Punishment and several levels of court-martial (Summary, Special, and General).

      In the U.S., charges are filed or preferred fairly early on in the judicial process, which is considered separate from the prior investigative process by the likes of the FBI, Office of the Inspector General, or Criminal Investigative Service (albeit in coordination with the USAO or Convening Authority). Charges can be dismissed or instituted later, but this is not the norm. Decisions about which parallel procedural track(s) to take are made relatively early.

      Not so under canon law, not so! At least when a bishop is the client of the Procurator-Advocate.

      It seems that in these cases (and maybe others?) the deciding authority (here, the Pope) reserves to himself the final decision whether to exercise administrative action or judicial action fairly late in the parallel processes, or even at their conclusion.

      Hence, it seems that the investigative phases of a canon law judicial trial can be intertwined with the administrative process. It would appear that the presence of the Auditor is to gather information for the latter.

      Ultimately, the Tribunal and the Auditor will each give their own separate recommendations to the Pope (without discussing them with each other), who will make the final decision.

      Similarly, the presence of the Promoter of Justice (prosecutor) and Procurator-Advocate (defense counsel for Archbishop Apuron) at a deposition is to gather information for inclusion in their final submission to the Tribunal. Not, as Rose has pointed out, to cross-examine the witness (though they may suggest questions to the judge beforehand).

      Very efficient.

      And very charitably protective of the privacy rights of survivors & victims -- unlike the common law system where they have to re-live their ordeal in public.

      In the U.S. it is almost unheard of for an entire trial to be held “under seal” (in secret). The U.S. was founded on the idea that an all-powerful State was to be avoided at all costs. Hence, defendants have considerably greater rights than victims.

      In civil law jurisdictions, including the Vatican, the concern about State overreach is far lower. Hence, victims have greater rights, most especially in their privacy.

      Let us pray that those who have suffered take advantage of these rights available under the parallel proceedings of canon law.

      Delete
  6. Talk about travesty of justice. I have mixed feelings about all this and really do understand both sides of the issue. It's just too bad a middle ground could not be reached. This MONSTER will really gloat about "No one can get him." SMH

    ReplyDelete
  7. The problem is with Attorney Lujan. He thinks that it is in his clients' best interest to shield them, forgetting that his clients' credibility was predicated on the fact that when they first came out publicly, the world knew that they had no basis to sue in court. They had nothing to gain. Their cause was a holy one. Now that they have much to gain, perhaps in the millions, after the statute of limitations was lifted propelled mainly by this credibility, they have gone underground. Have we been deceived? By Attorney Lujan? By Walter, Roy, and Roland? By both? Has the good people of Guam been take advantage of again? This is most distressing.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Andrew,

    You are doing something about it now. God bless you.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Will someone please talk to Walter, Roy, and Roland and plead with them? And to their lawyer as well?

    ReplyDelete
  10. They should've testified! I always stress "whatever it takes"! to DEFROCK his ass! Now what!?? He's laughing out loud now! You bet I'm pissed!

    ReplyDelete
  11. My only solace is that Apuron may have Rome fooled; Apuron may have the fawning neos at his defense; but Apuron cannot escape God's justice.

    The price he will pay if he remains unrepentant will be infinitely greater than any justice enacted here on earth.

    I just gotta keep reminding myself that as I continue to picket in front of the cathedral ...


    ReplyDelete
  12. This is like a nightmare recurring again and again.

    ReplyDelete
  13. It would seem that if the victims testified on the cannonical trial and Apuron was found guilty that it would give credence to the civil lawsuits filed, even if the details may not be available for review. Perhaps it is too late for this already, considering that Lujan has counseled the victims not to be deposed without him being present. Our hope is that affidavit from each victim given to Cardinal Burke will impact the outcome of the trial against Apuron. We know it is not as effective as personal testimony, we hope and pray that it will be enough to defrock Apuron.

    ReplyDelete
  14. We armchair lawyers, with out law degrees, are quick to criticize Atty. David Lujan for refusing to allow his client, Mr. Sondia, to testify in front of the Vatican Investigators without his lawyer present. Do you really think we know more than Atty. Lujan, with his years and years of trial experience?
    Can we really say for certain that apuron would have been declared guilty of sex abuse and defrocked which are our objectives had Mr. Sondia, et al only been allowed to testify, without his lawyer present?
    I can see it now: if apuron is not defrocked, it's Atty. Lujan's fault. And if apuron IS defrocked anyway?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I've made it quite clear in this fiasco that it was Rome who screwed up from the outset. Aside from communicating with Lujan, which it appears they could not, they could have at least offered some information like the booklet I recently posted to the people they wished to interview. After all, it's not often one is called to testify before a canonical tribunal. I really am amazed that there was no attempt to inform the witnesses with anything other than "be there," and even the way it was done: a letter in the mail out of nowhere which may not have reached some recipients because most of us on Guam still have P.O.'s and don't check the mail every day.

      Also it appears that the heaviest criticism of Lujan is coming from someone not on Guam and probably doesn't know him or his reputation. Lujan is doing the job he committed to do. Defrocking Apuron was not part of that commitment. That said, his clients can certainly petition him to help them do that. I am hoping they will.

      Delete
    2. I disagree Mr. Rohr. Attorney Lujan has a penchant for playing the racist card or foreign card, and he is doing it well here. Remember that he called Archbishop Byrnes the "white guy", a statement that was not only racist but spiteful. So, I highly doubt that anything the Vatican could have said or done was going to change his mind. He called Fr. Coon the "con" man without any basis to do so. Attorney Lujan is no dummy. He has resources(he's a millionaire)that he could have tapped to research what a canonical trial does. He also could have consulted his clients to ask them what they wanted to do. I highly doubt that he did. I am not saying that the Vatican could have done better, because they clearly were clumsy in handling this matter, but what I am saying is that Attorney Lujan is going to slam away at the Church, or any white guy, or anyone foreign to his way of thinking. Too bad. He could have contributed significantly to bringing Apuron to justice, not just posturing to maximize and extract as much money from the Church as he can. Let's face it. Attorney Lujan does not care what happens to the Church as Webster argues. I certainly hope that the victims do though. Time will tell.

      Delete
    3. Father Conn is also a an attorney not just a Canon lawyer. He is admitted to practice an an active member of the Maryland and DC bar associations. All attorneys included Conn must communicate through a represented patry'so attorney not directly with the party. So your "without basis" comment is without merit and uninformed. It does not matter what capacity Conn is acting in he swore an oath as a U.S. lawyer to which he is bound. The actions of Conn reveal his ethical standards and for the Vatican to appoint such a comprised individual into the process speaks for itself.

      Delete
    4. Read the ethical rule for yourself.

      This is in response to the comment by Anonymous, 23 February 2017 at 10:06 PM. Reverend James Jerome Conn, S.J. has not behaved unethically.

      American Bar Association, Model Rules of Professional Conduct

      Rule 4.2 Communication With Person Represented By Counsel

      In representing a client, a lawyer shall not communicate about the subject of the representation with a person the lawyer knows to be represented by another lawyer in the matter, unless the lawyer has the consent of the other lawyer or is authorized to do so by law or a court order.

      MRPC Rule 4.2 (emphasis added).

      The prohibition on an attorney communicating directly with a “represented party” applies only when there is both an identical “subject of the representation” and the party has a lawyer “in the matter”.

      Often, as here, the factual subject of the representation can encompass more than one “matter”. In that case, where a different “matter” is involved, there is no ethical prohibition on a lawyer seeking to communicate directly with an individual who has his or her own lawyer in the other matter.

      An example from my own practice may elucidate. As a CNMI Assistant Public Defender I represented clients charged with vehicular homicide based on DUI. Attorneys representing insurance companies in a contemplated civil matter arising out of the same accident would often contact my client directly.

      I had a good rapport with my clients, starting with “little” details like always pronouncing their names exactly as did they (back when my tongue was more youthfully flexible).

      I would build trust with them by statements like, “You are the person who will do the jail time, not me,” to ensure they were invested in the decision-making process and its consequences.

      I made sure they understood not to talk with friends, relatives, investigators, lawyers, or police about the case. “Anything you say can and will be used against you.”

      And it worked. They did not talk with the insurance lawyers who called them, instead telling me about the communication attempt.

      I would call up the insurance lawyers to complain, sometimes citing MRPC Rule 4.2, and find out what facts they were interested in. The smart ones would ask if I were representing my client in the civil accident liability matter.

      Unlike private counsel, who could be retained for both matters (if that were within the scope of representation in their written agreement), by statute the CNMI Office of the Public Defender, was limited solely to criminal defense matters.

      So I had no legal basis to file a bar ethics complaint against the insurance company lawyers for contacting my client directly without my permission.

      Likewise, the lawyers for the survivors / victims in the civil matter are not representing them in the ecclesiastical judicial matter. Nor have they associated with canon lawyers for the matter.

      So there is no basis whatsoever to cast ethical aspersions against Father Conn. Let alone a disciplinary bar complaint against him.

      As I mentioned in a previous comment referencing his faculty biography, Father Conn serves on the Board of Governors of the Canon Law Society of America and chairs its Committee on Professional Responsibility.

      Delete
    5. As for willingness or ability to jump on a plane and return to Guam at the drop of a hat, keep in mind that Father Conn has courses to teach at Boston College. Cardinal Burke does not.

      Delete
    6. So, if we can provide a reason for Cardinal Burke to come back, most likely Fr. Conn won't be able to accompany him? Would that make it easier for the accusers and their lawyer(s) to participate in the Vatican investigation?

      Delete
    7. I disagree with your insurance defense analogy. But I do appreciate your comment, all your comments help this readership. However, sex abuse in the church...honestly why trust anything coming from the Vatican on this subject. The Pope refrocked a priest and the church has notoriously unclean hands on its self-governance in handling these matters. Only the local and federal courts have any real teeth to institute a change. See the settlement agreement between theach Ramsey County, MN prosecutor's office and the local diocese. Here are snippets from the Maryland rules of prof. Conduct: the subject matter just needs to relate.

      https://govt.westlaw.com/mdc/Document/N2D424DE03C0211E6BDB8F71DBFB0E872?viewType=FullText&originationContext=documenttoc&transitionType=CategoryPageItem&contextData=(sc.Default)&bhcp=1

      [1] This Rule contributes to the proper functioning of the legal system by protecting a person who has chosen to be represented by an attorney in a matter against possible overreaching by other attorneys who are participating in the matter, interference by those attorneys with the attorney-client relationship, and the UNCOUNSELED disclosure of information RELATING to the representation.
      5] This Rule applies to communications with any person, whether or NOT A PARTY to a formal adjudicative proceeding, contract, or negotiation, who is represented by an attorney concerning the matter to which the communication RELATES. The Rule applies even though the represented person initiates or consents to the communication. An attorney must immediately terminate communication with a person if, after commencing communication, the attorney learns that the person is one with whom communication is not permitted by this Rule.

      Delete
  15. All of a sudden the Vatican has speeded up its canonical investigation- to the extent that they hardly give any notice to the victims- accident?;incompetence?; disrepect:?. The file has been open for eight years and they ONLY move when there are lawsuits on foot AND the Archdiocese was granted an extension etc etc until March to respond as we have recently read- coincidence? Nice to get the victim witness testimony out of the way pending further developments. I do not believe any outcome to the canonical trial will be known until well after all lawsuits are resolved.Yes RUSH RUSH now. If the Vatican were earnest about the trial they would send Burke back to attend the lawsuit cases especially when the first four victims are in court. If Apurons GUILT hinges on the personal appearance of the four victims, as would appear to be the majority view in the jungle, then the canonical trial could hardly be called thorough. It is interesting that all first four victims are following their lawyers advice- I do not believe they are AT ALL motivated by money but by the outcome of their cases which I venture to say will achieve what WE think the canonical trial will achieve. I'm with Attorney Lujan.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Question becomes what happens in the case of David Lujan representing a "white guy."

    ReplyDelete
  17. I'm half white. May I say, I hated when Lujan said that. Not surprised. He's a thug. Albeit, a millionaire thug. And I'd hire him if I was a white thug.

    ReplyDelete
  18. As a lawyer himself, Burke should have contacted the legal counsel of the people he wants to appear before him, if for nothing else but out of mutual respect, one lawyer to another. Bypassing Atty. Lujan bordered on disrespect and arrogance.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Burke was actually prohibited from speaking with Lujan. I'll ask Bob Klitzkie to explain in greater detail, but I believe CNMI Lawyer has already addressed this.

      Delete
  19. To the person making allegations about Geisinger. I will post if you cite specific and documentable examples.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please resubmit your original comment along with the reference you just submitted so it is all one comment.

      Delete
  20. Please clarify. I gave you the complete Associated Press article reference in one comment. Dateline, title and subtitle.


    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The original comment bashing Geisinger and the AP article so people know what you are talking about.

      Delete
  21. That was it. Just Google the title quoted and you'll get the November 2014 AP article with Geisinger's name leading off in the title.

    As mentioned, my apology for the Cut and Paste commands that aren't working on this device.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Here is the original comment: Fr. xxxxx has a long history of covering up pedophile priests. He's worse than Fr. Conn and he shouldn't be working on the Apuron abuse cases.

      I'm asking you to put the original comment and the reference together in a new comment.

      Delete
  22. I am not the person criticizing Father Robert J. Geisinger, S.J., but the allegations have previously been commented upon in this blog and were widely reported.

    See Michael Rezendes, “Top Vatican prosecutor failed to report abuser”, Boston Globe, Sun., 23 Nov 2014.

    It is behind a paywall, with 5 free views. I had never visited the site, and thus downloaded the article. This link will not work, if the site has been accessed more than five times.

    The article was also summarized in Crux.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. In general I am suspicious of any Francis appointee. The Vatican appears to be in greater disarray than during the time of Vatileaks and the resignation of Benedict. As for Geisinger, sad to say, I am even more suspicious of anyone with an S.J. after their name.

      But specific to the McGuire case, I am even more suspicious and hesitant to get off track on that. You won't find this easily on the internet now, but back when the case first came to the fore, there was a lot of suspicion that McGuire was thrown to the wolves by his own order. Not that McGuire was innocent (though he has never conceded guilt). But it became very obvious during the trial that he was poorly represented.

      McGuire was a arch conservative in an order that has led the Left in this Church for decades. There appeared to be several other allegations against Jesuits at the time, and McGuire may have been the red meat the "jezzies" threw to the wolves to take them off the trail of their more liberal friends. It appears to have worked.

      Stranger still is what the judge said upon sentencing the 76 year old priest to 25 years in prison:

      "I want any such person to know the system of justice, and this judge personally, finds it absolutely abhorrent," He committed a very, very serious sin."

      The judge was the daughter of a Lutheran minister.

      At any rate, I believe we need to understand more about the Geisinger's role in all this before we spend any more time on him. So far it appears that it is Burke who will control the proceedings.

      Delete
  23. Thank you, CNMI Lawyer. That article does not sit well with Lujan fans. He should have known who he was up against and played his cards to Roland's advantage. He missed a huge opportunity to seriously discredit the Vatican investigators. Geisinger is the main one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Why should he have known? That's not his job. His job is win compensation for Roland (and himself of course), not to discredit the Vatican investigators. He has nothing to gain on that front. Roland and the others should have had a canon lawyer as well as a civil one.

      But lawyers cost money, even canon lawyers. Lujan is working on a contingency basis. Also, the most we knew about any canonical proceedings against Apuron were the few acknowledgments to the press by Byrnes. But other than saying the trial has started, Byrnes offered no other information, not even any information that the Burke party would be coming to Guam in investigate.

      In fact, had not Roland showed Lujan the letter he received and Lujan's giving it to the press. No one would have known except Roland.

      Delete
    2. If this is a personal injury case, P.I. lawyers in the US customarily work on a contingency fee basis. No big deal.

      Delete
    3. Canon lawyers don't. And that was the point.

      Delete
  24. Lujan could have dealt the Vatican investigators a major blow simply by advertising Geisinger's duplicity again. AP already did the footwork. He's a proven pedophile sympathizer who should not be interrogating Apuron's victims.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He's not interrogating Apuron.

      Delete
    2. Anon 11:18 AM >>for clarification purposes "AP" stands for Associated Press, as in one of the national press syndications. Thanks to all the national coverage on Washinston Post news groups as well. And for us picketing every Sunday morning, rain or shine, we are helping to move the VATICAN toward resolving and inventual conclusion of Apuron's Tribunal Case. Let's march on with our PRAYERFUL picketing one Sunday at a time.

      Delete
  25. Tim, no one said that Geisinger is interrogating Apuron. We know he was sent to work on Roland.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. He was not sent to work on anyone. He was not part of the group which came to Guam. Plus he cannot interrogate anybody. In a canonical trial that the job of the judges.

      Delete
  26. "Yes, this is the likely outcome if Walter Denton, Roy Quintanilla, and Roland Sondia do not testify before the Canonical Trial of Apuron being speedily conducted by the Vatican." But when they interview Abp Apuron, he will be found out. I don't think he is that good an actor. He will surely be found out. So, I don't think Abp Apuron can get out of this only because the victims didnt testify before the visiting team.

    ReplyDelete
  27. The Vatican's child protection Commission has ceased to exist.

    An online article in today's National Catholic Reporter says that the short-lived Commission's lone survivor has resigned because she has no faith in it. As I recall, all of the Commission's Papal appointees are victims of abuse by pedophile priests.

    That Commission was always a colossal PR smokescreen. Francis just gave it lip service and turned it over to coverup artist O'Malley who enforced nothing. When other victim-Commissioners called out Rome on its lies and deceit last year, they tried to publicly discredit them and the people resigned in disgust.

    ReplyDelete

Recommendations by JungleWatch