Federal judge says no to ex-priest's claim in Archdiocese of Milwaukee bankruptcy case

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MILWAUKEE — A former priest accused of sexual abuse won't be getting any money from the Archdiocese of Milwaukee in its bankruptcy case.

Federal bankruptcy Judge Susan Kelley has tossed out a claim from Marvin Knighton, who says he was wrongly defrocked and money he contributed to his retirement account should be returned to him.

Knighton was charged with child sexual abuse in 2002 but acquitted by a jury the next year. The church still removed him from the priesthood, however, saying its investigation found two allegations against him had merit.

Knighton has steadfastly denied wrongdoing and originally asked for $475,000 in back pay, retirement contributions and expenses from the archdiocese in its long-running bankruptcy. The amount was eventually reduced to about $22,000 in retirement contributions, which Kelley denied Nov. 6.

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