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Diocese of Pittsburgh files petition with state Supreme Court after lawsuits

PITTSBURGH — The Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh has filed a petition seeking "extraordinary relief" with the Pennsylvania Supreme Court after a series of lawsuits over the last six months alleged clergy sex abuse.

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In June, an appeals court allowed a lawsuit filed against the Catholic Diocese of Altoona-Johnstown to move forward even though the alleged abuse happened in the 1970s and 1980s, well beyond the statute of limitations in Pennsylvania.

The court ruled a jury could decide if a victim's delay in coming forward is reasonable in cases of a cover-up or concealment.

Last week, the Diocese of Pittsburgh listed four lawsuits filed after that decision that it claims requires the relief from the Supreme Court.

“...The courts of this Commonwealth will be inundated with uniform cases and millions of dollars will be expended pursuing and defending claims that may eventually be deemed invalid by this Court," the diocese said in it's filing