Court filing: Diocese modifies list of accused clergy

Court filing: Diocese modifies list of accused clergy

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LUBBOCK, Texas -

We have a FOX34 Follow-up in a former deacon's lawsuit filed against the Diocese of Lubbock.

Jesus Guerrero is seeking more than $1 million in damages. The Diocese included him on a list of clergy deemed credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor. Guerrero claims the Diocese destroyed his reputation by knowingly publishing false information.

The Diocese has since modified its list. It didn't issue another news release, like in January. We learned of the change through its response in this lawsuit.

The modified list cites the Catholic Church's Cannon Law. It states someone who habitually lacks use of reason is considered equivalent of a minor.

The Church's filing states in 2003 an accusation of sexual misconduct was made against Guerrero involving a woman known to have a history of mental and emotional problems. Following an investigation, the Bishop suspended Guerrero. He was re-instated two years later.

Then, according to this new filing, another accusation of sexual misconduct was made against Guerrero in 2007. It involved the same woman.

The Diocese also cites the First Amendment in claiming the District Court does not have jurisdiction because it is an ecclesiastical matter.

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