Welcome scouts camp sign
11/17/20

Nearly 90,000 sex abuse claims filed against Boy Scouts of America

Nearly 90,000 sexual abuse claims were submitted against the Boy Scouts of America (BSA) ahead of a Monday deadline in the organization’s bankruptcy case.

Why it matters: The number of sex abuse cases is still likely underreported. Paul Mones, a lawyer who has been working on Boy Scouts cases for nearly two decades, told Axios he expects the total number of reported cases to be “closer” to 100,000. He’s calling for a congressional inquiry into the scandal.

  • The record number of new claims reveals the unknown scope of abuse.
  • The organization filed for bankruptcy in February after facing a slew of sex abuse reports. Claims had to be submitted by Monday at 5 p.m. ET.
  • Andrew Van Arsdale, one of the lead attorneys, called sex abuse an “unspoken norm” in BSA, per CNN. Claims include reports of forced sex, fondling and exposure to pornography.

For the record: Mones said more people came forward following the BSA’s bankruptcy filing.

  • “Most of the people coming forward were not molested by people that the Boy Scouts even acknowledged they knew about, which shows that the problem was much more deeply ingrained in the fabric of the scouts and the scouts for decades and decades,” he said.
  • Mones said the scale of abuse was much larger than the cases that emerged involving the Catholic Church in the U.S.
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People around camp fire
11/17/20

Nearly 90,000 file sexual abuse claims against the Boy Scouts in unprecedented case

For decades, Gill Gayle thought his story of being sexually abused in Boy Scouts was unique.

Two Scout leaders abused him in the 1970s, Gayle said. The incidents were unrelated: The men lived in different cities in Alabama and didn’t know each other.

Gayle was in sixth grade when the first scoutmaster fondled him while on a camping trip. He repeated the abuse over months. After Gayle’s family moved during his eighth-grade year, he said he woke up at the second scoutmaster’s house to the man “violently raping” him.

Years later, after therapy helped him deal with depression, substance abuse and suicidal thoughts and attempts, Gayle, now 58, knows his story is all too common.

On Monday, Gayle’s claims were among the nearly 90,000 filed by the deadline in the Boy Scouts’ federal bankruptcy case – the largest-ever child sex abuse case involving a single national organization.

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Camping tents
11/17/20

Boy Scouts deluged with 92,700 sexual abuse claims, dwarfing U.S. Catholic Church’s numbers

The Boy Scouts of America will face more than 92,700 claims of sexual abuse in a landmark bankruptcy that could reshape the future of one of the nation’s oldest and largest youth organizations, lawyers in the case said Monday as the filing deadline passed.

The number of claims and the total payouts to settle them will easily eclipse those in the sex abuse scandal that engulfed the U.S. Catholic Church more than a decade ago, plaintiffs’ lawyers say.

“This is a staggering number of cases, even beyond what I thought was out there,” said Paul Mones, a Los Angeles attorney who won a $20-million judgment against the Scouts in 2010 and represents several hundred accusers in the bankruptcy. “The scope of this is something I could never have contemplated.”

The 110-year-old Boy Scouts of America filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection in February as it faced a wave of new sex abuse lawsuits after several states, including California, New York and New Jersey, expanded legal options for childhood victims to sue.

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Boy scout handbook
11/16/20

Boy Scouts’ Bankruptcy Deadline Looms

The Boy Scouts of America will face the last batch of thousands of sex-abuse claims Monday, the deadline for people alleging they were abused as children to come forward in what is shaping up to be the largest bankruptcy case of its kind.

More than 80,000 claims were expected to be filed by Monday in bankruptcy court, according to attorneys involved in the case. The Boy Scouts filed for chapter 11 protection from lawsuits accusing the organization of not taking the necessary precautions to protect the children who joined the group.

The number of claims in the Boy Scouts bankruptcy case is many times the magnitude of the claims in more than 20 Catholic Church diocesan and religious-order bankruptcies that were similarly rooted in widespread child abuse, said James Stang, the lead lawyer for a committee representing people who said they were sexually abused in the Boy Scouts.

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Boy scout hat and child's hat
11/16/20

Sex-Abuse Claims Against Boy Scouts Now Surpass 82,000

More than 82,000 people have come forward with sex-abuse claims against the Boy Scouts of America, describing a decades-long accumulation of assaults at the hands of scout leaders across the nation who had been trusted as role models.

The claims, which lawyers said far eclipsed the number of abuse accusations filed in Catholic Church cases, continued to mount ahead of a Monday deadline established in bankruptcy court in Delaware, where the Boy Scouts had sought refuge this year in a bid to survive the demands for damages.

Paul Mones, a lawyer who has been working on Boy Scouts cases for nearly two decades, said the prevalence of abuse detailed in the filings was breathtaking and might reflect only a fraction of victims.

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Boy scouts hiking in the middle of a forest.
11/16/20

About 90K sex abuse claims filed in Boy Scouts bankruptcy

NEW YORK (AP) — Close to 90,000 sexual abuse claims have been filed against the Boy Scouts of America as the Monday deadline arrived for submitting claims in the organization’s bankruptcy case.

The number far exceeds the initial projections of lawyers across the United States who have been signing up clients since the Boy Scouts filed for bankruptcy protection in February in the face of hundreds of lawsuits alleging decades-old sex abuse by Scout leaders.

“We are devastated by the number of lives impacted by past abuse in Scouting and moved by the bravery of those who have come forward,” the Boy Scouts said in a statement. “We are heartbroken that we cannot undo their pain.” A few hours before the 5 p.m. EST deadline, the number of claims totaled 88,500, lawyers said

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Compass
11/13/20

Boy Scouts Of America Sexual Abuse Victims Seek Justice In Bankruptcy Court

The Boy Scouts of America are in the midst of a legal action that could threaten the very existence of the iconic, century-old institution. The Scouts declared Chapter 11 bankruptcy in February after thousands of allegations of child sexual abuse perpetrated by scoutmasters. The scope far exceeds the scope of American Catholic Church’s sexual abuse scandal — the number of abused Boy Scout claimants is more than 60,000 men. And that number could rise before Monday’s deadline to file a claim.

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Boy Scouts uniform and badges.
11/12/20

Tens of thousands file sex abuse claims against Boy Scouts of America as deadline approaches

The sexual abuse scandal roiling the bankrupt Boy Scouts of America is on track to dwarf a similar scandal that rocked the Catholic Church.

Men and boys who were abused as Scouts face a deadline: They must file claims with the court by 2 p.m. Pacific Time on Monday, Nov. 16, to be eligible for redress through a victims’ compensation fund. But while the BSA was expecting some 12,000 men to step forward, the number is many, many times that, casting a darker cloud over the resolution of its bankruptcy proceedings.

“It’s going to easily reach 40,000, maybe even 50,000,” said Los Angeles attorney Paul Mones, who sued the Boy Scouts on behalf of an Oregon man a decade ago — leading to the release of the “Perversion Files,” details of alleged sexual abuse secretly kept by the Boy Scouts for decades, as well as a $19.9 million verdict for the former Scout.

Those files revealed two things that will be the organization’s legacy, Mones said: That the Boy Scouts of America knew about sexual abuse in its ranks for decades, and that it didn’t alert the people who most desperately needed to know — parents and their children.

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10/22/20

Thousands file sexual abuse claims against Boy Scouts as deadline in bankruptcy looms

Faced with a looming deadline next month, thousands of accusers have submitted sexual abuse claims against the Boy Scouts of America in a bankruptcy that could cost the youth organization and its insurers hundreds of millions of dollars — or more.

The Scouts, which filed for Chapter 11 protection in February amid declining membership and an onslaught of new abuse lawsuits, will not say how many claims have been submitted to the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware.

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09/08/20

Boy Scouts ads brings thousands of new sex abuse claims

By Christian Boone, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

A national advertising campaign by the Boy Scouts of America alerting victims of decades-old sexual abuse they have until Nov. 16 to seek compensation has spawned thousands of new claims and a behind-the-scenes battle pitting survivors against attorneys.

The fight is all about controlling the process that will determine the compensation fund, established after the Scouts, beset by hundreds of lawsuits, filed for bankruptcy protection earlier this year.

“Will the decision be made by survivors, guided by lawyers, or by lawyers appearing on behalf of their clients?” said Atlanta attorney Esther Panitch, who represents Robb Lawson, one of nine survivors chosen in March to represent the victims’ interest in the Boy Scouts’ Chapter 11 case. In a 2016 interview with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, Lawson disclosed he was sexually abused by Fleming Weaver, a former Scoutmaster and well-known civic figure in Gainesville.

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