Three men who sought to hold the Vatican liable in
an American court for sexual abuses by Roman Catholic priests are
abandoning the case, according to a court motion filed Monday, the Associated Press reports.

Lawyers
looked to question Pope Benedict XVI under oath but had to leap the
high legal hurdle of the Vatican’s sovereign immunity status in the U.S.

The
Kentucky lawsuit was considered the first in the U.S. to make it to the
stage of determining whether victims had a negligence claim against the
Vatican. The Vatican argued that the plaintiffs never showed a
connection between Rome and the American clergy abuse scandal.

The plaintiffs filed a motion on Monday asking a federal judge in Louisville to dismiss their claims.

Their
attorney, William McMurry, said he was seeking to end the case because
of the Vatican’s immunity and failure to turn up new plaintiffs who
haven’t yet been involved in a Catholic clergy abuse case.

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Basically, the plaintiffs’ case that negligent bishops were “employees” of the Vatican was without merit. In addition, one man already had a settlement from the Louisville archdiocese and the allegations of the other two involved bishops who have died. Despite his “best efforts” to find new plaintiffs McMurray has conceded that there isn’t anyone else.

Carolyn Moynihan

Carolyn Moynihan is the former deputy editor of MercatorNet