A former South Florida priest sentenced last month to 15 years in prison for sexually abusing a child decades ago is the subject of a newly filed lawsuit against the Archdiocese of Miami.
The lawsuit, filed in Broward Circuit Court on Thursday, alleges that Neil Doherty, now 69, drugged and sexually abused a 12-year-old boy around 1990 in Miami, according to a press release from attorney Jeff Herman’s law firm.
Herman is representing the alleged victim, listed in the lawsuit as John Doe No. 100.
“Doherty sexually abused other boys before, during, and after the time he abused John Doe, which was known to the Archdiocese and actively concealed,” the press release provided by Herman’s office alleges.
Responding to Thursday’s announcement of a new lawsuit, the Archdiocese of Miami said that justice was served with Doherty’s prison sentence. Doherty on Jan. 28 received the maximum prison term after pleading no contest to six counts of lewd and lascivious acts upon a child in a separate criminal case.
In its statement, the Archdiocese said:
“We continue to pray for the healing of those whom he victimized as well as for all young people who have been abused by an adult in a position of trust. That a priest would give scandal in this way both angers and shames us.
“The Archdiocese of Miami has taken great steps to protect God’s children through its mandatory Safe Environment procedures which include national background checks, training for all employees, clergy and volunteers, and teaching our children how to be safe in today’s world.
“As a society, let us all further commit ourselves to the care of the children to prevent such abuses in the future.”