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Files Accusing Joliet Priests Of Sex Abuse Released To Public

(CBS) -- The public can now see files of priests from the Diocese of Joliet accused of sexually abusing children thanks to a lawsuit by one of the victims, reports WBBM's Nancy Harty.

The roughly 7,000 pages of documents detail credible allegations against 16 priests from the Diocese of Joliet. Among them is Father James Burnett, accused by David Rudolfski and two others of sexual abuse.

Rudofski says his relief by the documents being made public is tempered.

"Knowing what I had to go through get these, that still bothers me a lot," said Rudofski.

Files Accusing Joliet Priests Of Sex Abuse Released To Public

Rudofski describes the last several years as emotionally draining and an uphill battle, but says if it saves one child, it was worth it.

Attorney Jeff Anderson accuses the diocese and even the Vatican of continuing to protect priests at the peril of children.

"If it was a past problem, we wouldn't be as alarmed as we are," said Anderson.

The attorneys have filed five more lawsuits. They want the release of the names and addresses of other priests with credible accusations.

The Diocese of Joliet says it hasn't seen the suits and "…with God's help, the diocese will continue to do its best to assure the safety of its children."

The files can be downloaded from the website

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