11 Salem foster kids sue Oregon DHS

6-24-13-James Earl Mooney
James Earl Mooney in an undated image seen on KOIN 6 News.

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Lawyers for 11 young children who reportedly suffered sexual abuse at a Salem, Ore., foster home have filed nearly $23 million in lawsuits against the state’s Department of Human Services.

The Oregonian reports that the lawsuits represent one of the most sweeping cases brought against the state child-welfare agency over abuse by one foster parent.

An agency spokesman referred questions to the Oregon Department of Justice, which declined comment Monday.

James Earl Mooney was sentenced last year to 50 years in prison after pleading guilty to five counts of first-degree sodomy. His wife wasn’t charged with any wrongdoing. The couple have divorced.

The newspaper says 50 babies and toddlers lived in the foster home from 2007 to 2011.

– Information from The Oregonian.

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