Perlitz Accounts to Go Toward Victims
The Connecticut Post reported that a federal judge has ordered the government to seize the remaining $42,000 from Douglas Perlitz’s accounts to provide education, counseling and other services to his victims of sexual abuse in Haiti. Perlitz is currently serving a 19 year and seven month prison sentence for the conviction of the prolonged abuse of 16 students.
U.S. District Judge Janet Bond Arterton, the same judge that sentenced Perlitz in December, will conduct another hearing next month to decide how the money will be divided among the victims. Representatives from Kids Alive International, which has been providing for the boys since the closing of Project Pierre Toussaint, will be present.
According to the article, Assistant U.S. Attorney Krishna Patel and the chairman of the Haiti Fund Michael McCooey claimed that the Kids Alive supervisors in Cap-Haitien, Haiti were being threatened by some of the victims amidst rumors of large cash payouts. McCooey said that Fairfield University and the Order of Malta each agreed to provide $11,000 for various programs periodically.
That may not be happening, as The Connecticut Post reported that Arterton said she was “leery” of the court handling money that came from private institutions. She went on to suggest that the organizations look for other ways to disperse the money.
Child Abuse advocate Paul Kendrick told The Mirror that “those responsible for ensuring the care and safety of these boys while they attended Project Pierre Toussaint have barely scratched the surface of what must be done to restore all that was taken from the former students.”
Kendrick then blasted both the Order of Malta and Fairfield and said, “No more half measures. No more giving a little financial support here and there to appear generous.” He suggested that those with the power to do so should be concerned with building a new school. He also said, “It’s time for von Arx, Miller and everyone involved to sit up straight and pay attention.”
Perlitz, 40, is a graduate of Fairfield University and founded Project Pierre Toussaint in 1997. The project took boys off the streets and provided them with clothes, food, water and education. He was the face of the project until 2008, when the Haitian Board of directors decided to remove him after allegations of the sexual assaults surfaced.
During his sentencing, Arterton said that Perlitz’s defense argument that he provided positively to society is akin to digging a well to provide water for people who need it, poisoning the well, and still expecting to be praised for digging the well.