Del. bankruptcy judge rules on ex-priests' files
By Randall Chase, Associated Press

A Delaware bankruptcy judge has granted motions filed by two former priests challenging the release of their personnel files as part of a settlement in the Catholic Diocese of Wilmington's bankruptcy.

Charles Wiggins and Kenneth Martin both sought protective orders to prevent the diocese from releasing their files to members of a creditors committee for possible subsequent disclosure to the public.

Judge Christopher Sontchi on Tuesday issued one-page orders granting the motions, almost six months after hearing arguments behind closed doors and barring reporters from the courtroom.

The diocese agreed to a $77 million settlement with some 150 alleged victims of priest sex abuse to end its bankruptcy case. The agreement also required church officials to turn over internal documents detailing how the diocese handled pedophile priests.

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