Florida Priest Continued in Active Ministry for THREE YEARS After Sex Abuse Lawsuit Filed

A Florida priest who was recently arrested on sex abuse charges was permitted to continue in active ministry for nearly three years after a civil sex abuse lawsuit was filed against him and the diocese in which he serves.

Father Leo Riley, 68, continued to serve as a priest for years after a 2020 sexual abuse lawsuit was filed against him and the Diocese of Venice, Florida.

The matter came to the forefront this week after Riley was arrested on several sex abuse charges dating back to his time serving as a priest in Iowa decades ago.

The Charlotte County, Florida, Sheriff’s Office said in a press release that deputies arrested Riley in Port Charlotte on April 24 “on multiple counts of capital sexual battery stemming from his past work as a priest in Iowa.” He was ordained in Iowa in 1982 and served there until 2005.

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