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Lawsuit claims Boy Scouts covered up sexual abuse

PORTLAND, Ore. — The Boy Scouts of America has long kept an extensive archive of secret documents that chronicle the sexual abuse of young boys by Scout leaders over the years.

Kelly Clark, the attorney for a man who was molested in the 1980s by a Scout leader, has obtained about 1,000 of the files and is expected to release them during an ongoing trial.

Clark says the files show how the Boy Scouts have covered up abuse for decades, and testimony Friday suggested no training was provided to Scout leaders to spot abuse.

"The Boy Scouts of America ignored clear warning signs," Clark said in court.

Charles Smith, attorney for the national Boy Scouts, told the jury that the files were kept under wraps because they "were replete with confidential information," and that they helped national scouting leaders weed out sex offenders.

Clark is seeking $14 million in damages on behalf of a 37-year-old man who was sexually molested in the early 1980s in Portland by an assistant Scoutmaster, Timur Dykes.

Dykes was convicted three times between 1983 and 1994 of sexually abusing boys, most of them Scouts.

Lawsuit claims Boy Scouts covered up sexual abuse 03/19/10 [Last modified: Friday, March 19, 2010 10:20pm]
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