Statement On The Maine Law Court's Decision In Priest Abuse Records

April 22, 2005

Attorney General Steven Rowe is reviewing the Law Court's opinion in Blethen Maine Newspapers, Inc. v. State of Maine, issued today. The case is about public access to investigative records related to allegations of sexual abuse by eighteen deceased Roman Catholic priests. The Court's opinion is available online at

Following an initial review of the decision, Attorney General Rowe said, "We are pleased that the Court seems to have recognized that the names of the alleged victims in these records must remain confidential. Protecting their privacy was the reason for our appeal of the Superior Court's earlier decision. The Law Court's decision addresses what was an open question in Maine law regarding these records.""

CHARLES DOW, 207-626-8577