CAMDEN, N.J. (CBS) – The Diocese of Camden has been named in a new clergy abuse lawsuit. Former altar boy Justin Hoffman filed it hours after New Jersey extended the civil statue of limitations for sexual abuse.
Hoffman says deceased priest Brendan Sullivan abused him from 1995 to 2001 at Saint James Parish in Ventnor City, New Jersey.
“It was a friendship at first, you know. I didn’t realize that it wasn’t a friendship,” Hoffman said. “That’s not a healthy friendship. There isn’t a friendship between a 65- or-70-year-old priest and a 9-year-old boy.”
The Camden Diocese says it received the first accusation of abuse concerning Sullivan in 2010 and removed him from ministry.
Sullivan died in 2011.
The church added in a statement, “As in all such cases, the Diocese will notify law enforcement authorities of the accusation and other professional counseling and therapy to anyone who claims to have been abused.”