The Oregon Supreme Court decision Thursday to release 20,000 pages of files about volunteers who molested Boy Scouts could open the floodgates of litigation, says the Oregonian. Within weeks, a Portland law firm plans to post the 1,247 files on its website for all to see — with the names of alleged child victims and the people who reported the suspected abuse removed. The files outline a widespread problem of child sex abuse and the organization’s attempts to cover it up.
Attorneys of men who were abused as Scouts will have precisely the evidence they need to sue the Texas-based youth organization for many millions of dollars in punitive damages, legal experts say. The Boy Scouts had vigorously fought the release of the so-called ineligible volunteer files, also known as perversion files, covering 1965 to 1985. A Portland jury in 2010 used the documents to award nearly $20 million after a 38-year-old Oregon man sued the Boy Scouts for failing to protect him in the 1980s from Timur Dykes, a Southeast Portland volunteer who had already confessed to molesting 17 other boys.