Otago Daily Times
Thousands file sexual abuse claims against Boy Scouts
LOS ANGELES: Faced with a November 16 deadline, thousands of accusers have submitted sexual abuse claims against the Boy Scouts of America in a bankruptcy that could cost the organisation and its insurers hundreds of millions of dollars.
The Scouts, which filed for Chapter 11 protection amid declining membership and an onslaught of new abuse lawsuits, will not say how many claims have been submitted. But some lawyers say claims continue to pour in, predicting that tens of thousands will meet the deadline.
The Chapter 11 action is intended to allow the Boy Scouts to reorganise and restructure its finances while continuing to operate. The same strategy for protecting assets has been used by many Catholic dioceses caught up in the church’s sex abuse scandal.
However, the Scouts’ bankruptcy promised ‘‘to dwarf anything we’ve seen in the Catholic Church’’, Abused in Scouting attorney Timothy Kosnoff said.
He said his group had signed up more than 10,000 clients and he would not be surprised to see total claims reach 50,000. —