Obama Administration Supports Vatican Immunity in US

HopeTracker| The Obama Administration has backed the Vatican’s claim of immunity from lawsuits brought against pedophile priests in the US.

The US Supreme Court justices are considering whether the Ninth Circuit improperly found the case to be an exception to the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act, a 1976 federal law that sets limits on when other countries can face lawsuits in US courts.

If the Supreme Court lets the decision stand, by not vacating the judgment, the proceedings will next determine if the Vatican can properly be considered the employer of bishops in America.

The case, which was filed in 2002, does not directly address questions raised in a separate lawsuit in Kentucky alleging that US bishops are employees of the Holy See.

But the Vatican plans to argue in the Kentucky case that Catholic dioceses are run as separate entities from the Holy See, and that the only authority that the pontiff has over bishops around the world is a religious one, according to Jeffrey Lena, the Vatican’s US attorney. via AFP