Yesterday the Creditors’ Committee in the Archdiocese of Milwaukee Bankruptcy
proceedings asked the Court to hire a forensic accounting firm to scrutinize the
Archdiocese and Archbishop Timothy Dolan’s transfer of millions of dollars in
the years leading up to the bankruptcy.
The forensic accountants the
Creditor’s Committee is recommending are experts in reviewing financial affairs
of organizations, including transfers of money by the organization. The same
forensic accountants were hired by the bankruptcy court in the Diocese of San
Diego bankruptcy and prepared a report for the presiding judge that pointed out
the diocese’s attempt to manipulate their finances in order to hide funds. The
report upset the judge to the extent that she nearly kicked the Diocese out of
Bankruptcy Court. See article about the San Diego case here
The Archdiocese of Milwaukee made several
transfers of large sums of money and also created numerous trusts right before
the bankruptcy which the Creditors’ Committee believes should be scrutinized.
The Archdiocese moved roughly $55 million dollars to a cemetery trust and
approximately $70 million to the parishes in the years leading up to the
bankruptcy. Further the Archdiocese of Milwaukee also created a number of trusts
before filing for bankruptcy. Four of these trusts were created within 4 months
of the Archdiocese filing for Bankruptcy. Click here
for the Journal Sentinel story on this.
of these transfers led the Creditors Committee to file the motion to hire
forensic accountants to scrutinize the Archdiocese of Milwaukee’s transfers. As
lawyers for many survivors of clergy abuse in the Archdiocese, we firmly believe
that the top officials in the Archdiocese, including Archbishop Dolan, should be
questioned about these transfers as part of the bankruptcy proceedings.