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Sep 27, 2011 4:21 PM by Dennis Bragg - KPAX

New sexual abuse case filed in Montana against Catholic Church

MISSOULA- Montana attorneys are filing another civil lawsuit against the Catholic Church, this time seeking damages for 45 victims of sexual abuse at church schools and institutions in Western Montana.

This time the suit is alleging nuns as well as priests were involved in sexually abusing children, with some allegations dating back more than 60-years.

The new suit has been filed in Lewis and County District Court against the Helena Archdiocese and the Ursuline Western Province alleging abuse that took place in the 1940s, 1950s and early 1960s.

The suit claims nuns, especially at the church schools in St. Ignatius, as well as priests, routinely abused Native American children at the boarding school, subjecting them to routine sexual abuse.

The victims claim the church tried to cover up the abuse and didn't take disciplinary action to separate the alleged abusers from their victims. There are 29 women and 16 men named in the new case.

During a Tuesday morning press conference in Missoula attorneys said it has taken years and been very painful for the victims to admit they were abused, and they hope the suit will help the victims find some closure to a "life of pain".

We're hoping to receive an official reaction from the church to these new allegations sometime today.

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