An Oxnard man who says he was sexually abused by a priest over a five-year period decades ago is suing the Vatican, seeking the names of all offenders within the church worldwide.
Manuel Vega, who’s now 52, reached a settlement with the Archdiocese of Los Angeles in 2007, but his attorneys said Thursday that doesn’t release the Vatican from responsibility.
The lawsuit, filed Wednesday on behalf of Vega in federal court in California, accuses the Vatican of placing the Rev. Fidencio Silva-Flores in a position of power at Our Lady of Guadalupe Church in Oxnard west of Los Angeles and says it should have known he posed a danger to children.
It calls specifically for Pope Francis to release names and alleged files pertaining to more than 3,400 sexual predators held at the Vatican and the disclosure of identities of top Catholic Church officials who were known or found to be complicit in covering up child sexual abuse cases.
“This happened to me at the age of 10,” Vega told reporters at a news conference. “Here I am at 52 years old and I’m still talking about it, and I’m still thinking about it, and it still gives you nightmares.”
The Vatican has refused to release the documents.