Late last month a Wisconsin judge ruled that the victims of pedophile priests and other creditors should not have access to the millions that then-Archbishop Timothy Dolan moved to a cemetery fund after telling the Vatican that he was doing so for the “improved protection of these funds from any legal claim and liability.” Now that group wants the judge to recuse himself after they learned that he has at least nine relatives buried in the Archdiocese’s cemeteries.
In motions filed Monday — one to set aside the ruling and the other asking Randa to recuse himself — the creditors said they “discovered that at least nine of Judge Randa’s relatives (including his mother, his father and his wife’s parents) are buried in cemeteries owned and operated by” the archdiocese. “This fact alone creates the appearance of partiality,” the motion states. They add that Randa, by purchasing burial rights for his parents, entered into a contract with the archdiocese, further supporting the call for him to step down from the case. “Judge Randa should have disqualified himself from presiding over any aspect of this adversary proceeding. Yet, he did not do so,” the motion reads. “Nor did he disclose the facts to the parties at any time during the case.”
The petitioners contend that if the cemetery funds were to be turned over to claimants, the judge could be forced to pay for the upkeep of his family’s plots out of his own pocket.