Judge Squashes Greek Church’s Second Attempt To Expose Victims’ Names

Author: Staff
Date Published: 04/11/2008
Publication: Orthodox Reform

Defying Judge, Greek Church Again Attempts to Expose Victims’ Names

A motion from the defendants filed on March 21st, 2008 attached an exhibit that included the alleged victim’s names and detailed, sensitive personal information. This move was in defiance of a previous order by the court to keep the alleged victim’s names anonymous after an earlier attempt to expose the victim’s names in 2007 (see previous article).

Protecting the privacy of alleged sexual abuse victims is a standard practice in sexual abuse litigation as well as a common policy for responsible journalistic publications.

The victim’s support group SNAP reacted strongly to the Greek Church’s previous attempt to expose alleged victim’s names (read the article). The Greek Orthodox Church is embroiled in a lawsuit by alleged victims claiming child sex abuse by Nicholas Katinas, former priest at Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church in North Dallas.

The plaintiffs’ filing had this to say about defendant Holy Trinity’s actions on the part of Mr. Miller from the defendant’s law firm:

The only conceivable reason to do what Mr. Miller has done was simply to place this very personal information in the public arena to embarrass, humiliate, shame and other wise victimize these young men who have already suffered the worst crime a child should ever endure. Holy Trinity has accomplished the goal they set in August of last year, to expose victims and thereby to discourage others from coming forward even if it means being contemptuous and effectively usurping this Court’s authority. (see Motion to Remove Victim’s Names from Defendants’ Documents, p. 3)

The plaintiffs’ attorney responded to the defendants lack of remorse in this incident:

Nowhere in its Response did Holy Trinity show remorse or allege “mistake” in outing the Plaintiffs and other victims. (see Plaintiff’s Attorney Reaction to Holy Trinity’s Response p. 2)

In response, the judge ruled in favor of the plaintiffs’ attorney and ordered the defendants’ exhibit be removed from public access and that such information be sealed. The judge further expressly ordered that future documents the defendants file to the court should not contain the names of the alleged victims or should be sealed from public access.

View some of the related court filings on this case:

Defendants Distance Themselves from Nicholas Katinas

Both Holy Trinity Greek Orthodox Church and the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese, defendants in the Katinas lawsuit, have designated former priest Nicholas Katinas, accused of sexual abusing numerous young boys, as a “responsible third party.”

In essence, this means the defendants are arguing that Katinas is responsible for his own action, and the defendants are not. The defendants have essentially washed their hands of their former priest and have not hired an attorney to defend Katinas.

Katinas has not responded to the allegations and his current whereabouts are unknown.

For more information on this, read the legal motion.