A former Irish priest accused of molesting four men in Humboldt County in the 1980s has been extradited to Ireland, where he faces criminal charges for sexual misconduct, authorities said.
Patrick Joseph McCabe, 75, was turned over to Irish national police officers Sunday night at San Francisco International Airport, the U.S. Marshals Service said Monday.
McCabe, who was arrested in August, had been jailed since then in Alameda County pending extradition to his homeland.
Following McCabe's apprehension, Greg Horne, 38, of Arcata and three unidentified men filed civil lawsuits last year alleging fraud and negligence by the Santa Rosa Catholic Diocese.
The suits contend that the diocese was at fault for assigning McCabe to St. Bernard Parish in Eureka from 1983 to 1985, when he allegedly molested the four men.
A report by the Dublin Archdiocese said that McCabe had been transferred to Santa Rosa months after he had been designated as a pedophile and placed on a drug to curb his sexual impulses at a church treatment facility in New Mexico.
Lawyers for the Santa Rosa diocese have said there is no evidence of misconduct in McCabe's file and no evidence that former Bishop Mark Hurley, who is deceased, was aware of the priest's history.
The lawsuits were dismissed this year by lawyers for the alleged victims, who said they intend to refile the claims naming the Santa Rosa and Dublin branches of the church, as well as the Catholic congregation that ran the clinic where McCabe was treated.
Attorney Jeff Anderson of Minnesota said the new case will be filed this month, including evidence he obtained on a trip to Ireland in April.
McCabe's extradition does not affect the civil case, he said.
"We're just grateful that he's off the streets and headed to the place where they are going to try him," Anderson said.
McCabe, who was removed from the clergy in 1988, faces prosecution in Ireland for alleged sexual assaults on six boys in Dublin between 1973 and 1981.