CourtSide - The FindLaw Breaking Legal News Blog

Sex Abuse Victim Sues Dennis Hastert for Remaining Hush Money

An anonymous, alleged sexual abuse victim of Dennis Hastert filed a breach of contract lawsuit last week, claiming the former House Speaker still owes him $1.8 million of $3.5 million Hastert agreed to pay to "compensate for and keep confidential" the abuse. It was the previous $1.7 million in payments that put Hastert on the FBI's radar, and he has already pled guilty to structuring bank withdrawals to avoid bank reporting requirements.

You can read the full lawsuit below:

James Doe

The victim is not named in the lawsuit, but the filing does detail serious accusations against Hastert from his pre-political life as a teacher and wrestling coach at Yorkville High School. The suit claims Hastert was a trusted family friend who offered to take the then 14-year-old to a high school wrestling camp, and that Hastert "violated the special trust Plaintiff put in [Hastert] by sexually molesting and abusing Plaintiff in a motel room" while on the trip.

But it wasn't just the abuse:

"For many years to follow, Plaintiff suffered severe panic attacks which lead to periods of unemployment, career charges, bouts of depression, hospitalization, and long-term psychiatric treatment. Because of the special trust he placed in Hastert, Hastert's special position as a trusted adult and family friend, and because of Doe's youth when the abuse occurred and its nature, Plaintiff did not blame or attribute these problems to Hastert's abuse during this time."

John Dennis

The alleged victim finally confronted Hastert in 2008, during which time the two "entered into an oral contract ... whereby Hastert agreed to pay Plaintiff $3.5 million to compensate Plaintiff for harm caused by Hastert's sexual abuse of Plaintiff and Plaintiff gave up any right to sue for injuries or seek any public acknowledgement of the misconduct." Hastert had been making good on the agreement, until he got busted by the feds. He hasn't made a payment since December 2014, and now the victim is suing for the remainder owed, plus interest.

Here's the suit, in full:

James Doe v. John Dennis Hastert; Breach of Contract Claim by FindLaw