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Jury Awards $8.1M To Duluth Clergy Abuse Victim

ST. PAUL, Minn. (WCCO) -- A Ramsey County jury awarded $8.1 million Wednesday to a man who was sexually abused by a priest with the Diocese of Duluth decades ago.

According to a statement from Jeff Anderson & Associates, the plaintiff's attorney, Father J. Vincent Fitzgerald sexually abused William Weis in 1978 at St. Catherine's Church in Squaw Lake, Minnesota for a period of two weeks.

The two met at St. Thomas More Church in Lake Lillian, Minnesota, but Fitzgerald was working as an Oblate priest with the Diocese of Duluth at the time. After they met, Fitzgerald brought Weis to St. Catherine's, where the molestation continued.

On Wednesday, the plaintiff's attorney says the jury attributed 60 percent fault to the Diocese of Duluth and 40 percent to the Oblates of Mary Immaculate, a religious order based in St. Paul.

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