SAN FRANCISCO — A settlement has been reached in a sex-and-money scandal that rocked the Diocese of Santa Rosa, officials said Monday.
The diocese has agreed to pay $535,000 to Father Jorge Hume Salas, who claimed that Bishop G. Patrick Ziemann demanded sex in return for covering up Salas' theft from his Ukiah church.
After Salas filed suit last July, Ziemann abruptly resigned, admitting the affair but saying it had been consensual. Diocesan officials subsequently discovered that overspending and large settlements in other sexual-misconduct cases had left the diocese $15 million in debt.
Many churches and schools lost their savings and special funds and have been forced to cut back drastically, postponing projects and conducting emergency fund-raising drives.