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Church settles with four in suit

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Spotlight Report

SJC justice refuses to lower $300,000 Shanley case bail

By John Ellement, Globe Staff, 6/7/2002

A single justice of the state Supreme Judicial Court yesterday refused to lower the $300,000 bail set for the Rev. Paul R. Shanley, the retired priest charged with raping a boy inside a Newton church in the 1980s.

In a one-paragraph order yesterday afternoon, Justice John M. Greaney said that Shanley's lawyer, Frank Mondano, had not shown that Middlesex Superior Court Judge Charles J. Hely had committed a ''clear error of law'' or abused his discretion in setting bail.

Earlier in the day, a niece of Shanley's said that her uncle has been tarnished by lawyers feeding sensational stories to the press.

In brief comments after the hearing before Greaney, Teresa Shanley said she wants the allegations against her uncle dealt with in the courts, not in newspapers.

Teresa Shanley said the information obtained by news outlets ''has been for the sole purpose of sensationalism, sound bites, and self-serving lawyerism.''

She did not say whether she was referring to the civil attorneys suing the Archdiocese of Boston, who have released reams of materials obtained through litigation, or if she was directing her comments at Middlesex District Attorney Martha Coakley's office, which is prosecuting Shanley.

Mondano asked Greaney to cut Shanley's bail, arguing that prosecutors could not demonstrate that his client is a flight risk. But prosecutor Lynn Rooney told Greaney that Shanley wrote to the archdiocese in the 1990s, offering to move to Central or South America to avoid civil lawsuits then being filed against the church from alleged victims of Shanley's.

Shanley was arrested on three counts of child rape on May 2 in San Diego. He has pleaded not guilty to raping Paul Busa, who is suing the archdiocecse. Bail was originally set at $750,000 cash in Newton District Court on May 7, and Hely cut it to $300,000 on May 10.

Rooney told Greaney that her office is contacted by someone with allegations against Shanley on a daily basis. The Busa case is now before a grand jury and Rooney said she expects ''multiple indictments'' to be filed against Shanley before his next district court date on June 24.

Mondano said Shanley has the support of people who ran Catholic education programs in the 1980s at St. John the Evangelist Church in Newton because ''what is alleged to have happened, could not have happened.''

This story ran on page A17 of the Boston Globe on 6/7/2002.
© Copyright 2002 Boston Globe Electronic Publishing LLC.


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