There are many innocent priests who have been railroaded by lying accusers, malicious so-called victims’ advocates, rapacious lawyers and biased newspapers, but few have been more badly treated than Philly’s Msgr. William Lynn. Yesterday, a Pennsylvania appellate court overturned his conviction—for a second time—and ordered a new trial. The badly tainted Philadelphia D.A., Seth Williams, has not said whether he will appeal.
Finally, Philadelphia Common Pleas Court Judge M. Teresa Sarmina was taken down for her disgraceful decision to present evidence against Lynn that antedated his birth. The Superior Court judges ripped her for presenting evidence that was “trivial or minimal.” It was obvious from her deceitful ploy that she was putting the entire Catholic Church on trial. But she is far from the only unethical official in this scam.
- On March 31, 2001, I sent Philly D.A. Lynne Abraham (Williams’ predecessor) a letter in the overnight mail asking her to identify which “religious organizations and denominations” she pursued other than the Roman Catholic Church (that was her specific charge). She never answered.
- On February 1, 2012, I publicly called on Judge Sarmina to step down as the presiding judge, citing an anti-Catholic remark she made from the bench. She said she “misspoke.”
- The key witness for Philly D.A. Seth Williams was “Billy Doe,” a known drug addict, thief, and serial liar who was kicked out of two high schools. Even his own mother testified against him.
- The Philadelphia Inquirer was so anxious to put Lynn in the slammer that when I offered it $58,000 in 2013 to run a full-page ad exposing the many faces of corruption, I was turned down.
The depth and breadth of dishonesty, vengeance, and bigotry that marks this witch-hunt is astounding. Shame on all the parties to it.
Merry Christmas to Msgr. Lynn, attorney Tom Bergstrom, and the Philadelphia Archdiocese.