Victim of Priest Sexual Abuse Receives 1.75 Million Dollar Settlement

by John McKiggan

The Roman Catholic Diocese of London, Ontario has agreed to pay Lou-Anne Soontiens $1,745,000.00, plus legal costs to compensate her for years of sexual abuse she suffered as a child at the hands of Father Charles Sylvestre. The total value of the settlement is thought to be more than 2.2 million dollars.

Sylvestre, one of Canada’s most notorious pedophiles was convicted of sexually assaulting Sootiens.

CBC’s Fifth Estate aired a documentary about Sylvestre called “The Good Father”. As you will see from watching the documentary it is apparent that persons of authority within the Catholic Church knew about Sylvestre’s sexual abuse but did nothing to protect his victims.

I have posted about Sylvestre’s predatory abuse in the past. See also, Sex Abuse help Fund Doubled.

The effects of childhood sexual abuse can be devasting. Although the scars my not be visible, the damage caused to the victims can be totally disabling. Because of the psychological effects of their abuse, many victims are not able to bring forward their claims on their own behalf.

My client Ron Martin has filed a class action against the Roman Catholic Diocese of Antigonish on behalf of persons that suffered sexual abuse by priests that who were members of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Antigonish.

If you or a family member were a victim of sexual abuse by a priest from the Roman Catholic Diocese of Antigonish you can contact me, or take a look at my website for more information about the class action.

I have represented hundreds of victims of childhood sexual abuse in claims for compensation. As a public service I have prepared a resource guide for survivors of sexual abuse in Atlantic Canada. You can receive a free copy of The Survivor’s Guide to Abuse Compensation Claims by contacting me through this blog, or my website at or by calling toll free in Atlantic Canada 1-877-423-2050.

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