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John C. Manly

Senior Attorney

jmanly@manlystewart.com

(t) 949-252-9990
(f) 949-252-9991

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Education

University of Southern California, B.A., 1986; Pepperdine University School of Law, J.D., 1990.

Practice Areas

Litigation of civil actions involving childhood sexual abuse, sexual harassment and electronic harassment; Marsy's Law representation of crime victims; legislative advocacy for the protection of children and vulnerable adults. Sexual Abuse, Sexual Bullying, Clergy Abuse, Abuse in School (these should be links to these areas on our website)

Bar Admissions

  • State Bar of California
  • State Bar of Alaska
  • State Bar of Arizona
  • State Bar of New York
  • U.S. District Court, Central and Eastern Districts of California

Professional Biography

Named one of California's "Top 100 Attorneys" by the Los Angeles Daily Journal, and Orange County's most "Buzzworthy" attorney by Orange Coast Magazine, John C. Manly is California's preeminent attorney representing victims of sexual abuse. Over the past decade, John and his legal team have been heavily involved in the most significant sexual abuse actions litigated across the nation, assisting in the recovery of more than a billion dollars—through trial and settlement—on behalf sexual abuse victims. Additionally, Manly, Stewart & Finaldi's litigation has effectuated significant non-monetary changes to the policies and procedures of youth and charitable organizations, helping to keep kids safe.

Mr. Manly took on his first sexual abuse case in 1997. The case involved a young man victimized by his priest/high school principal. After 5 years of litigation, leaving no stone unturned, Mr. Manly was able to achieve a 5.2 million dollar settlement in the action—still the largest single-victim pre-trial settlement in history for the type of abuse suffered. Since that time, Mr. Manly has devoted his time to assembling a powerful team of attorneys who specialize in litigating sexual abuse civil cases on behalf of children and vulnerable adults, firmly establishing Manly, Stewart & Finaldi as the nation's preeminent law firm in the field. Manly, Stewart & Finaldi specializes in litigation of molestation, sexual harassment and exploitation actions in religious, employment, educational, familial and other settings. (Link to News Section of Site).

Mr. Manly's work was predominantly featured in the 2005 documentary "Deliver Us From Evil," which centered around the civil prosecution of notorious predator priest Oliver O'Grady and the church officials who protected him. His exploits in this arena have garnered substantial national media attention, cementing his reputation as one of the nation's leading authorities in the arena of sexual abuse litigation.

Published Decisions

C.A. v. William S. Hart Union High School Dist., (2012) 53 Cal.4th 861—This landmark precedent-setting California Supreme Court decision sets the scope of a California public entity's liability for the sexually abusive acts of its agents. Mr. Manly represented a minor who sued his high school district and guidance counselor for damages arising out of sexual harassment and abuse by the counselor. The District demurred, contending that it could not be held liable for the negligence or supervisory failures of administrative personnel who knew, or should have known, of the counselor's activities. After the trial and appellate courts agreed with the Defendant's position, Manly, Stewart & Finaldi fought this case to the California Supreme Court and prevailed. The Supreme Court issued a published decision holding the minor's claim against the public entity, for negligently hiring, retaining and supervising the perpetrator, was legally viable.


Notable Cases

Mr. Manly has assisted in the recovery of more than a billion dollars on behalf of his clients. Here is a small representative sample of his trial experience:

John TZ Doe v. Roman Catholic Bishop of Stockton, et al., (2012) San Joaquin County Superior Court– Unanimous jury verdict on all counts against Defendant Father Michael Kelly, and $3,750,000.00 settlement against Diocese of Stockton, after 10-week trial in a case where the Plaintiff alleged, after recovering his 25-year-old repressed memories, he was sexually abused by Fr. Kelly as a child.

John VG Doe v. Roman Catholic Archbishop of Los Angeles, et al., (2011) Los Angeles County Superior Court– Consummation of $1,500,000.00 settlement on behalf of victim of child sexual abuse at the hands of Father Fernando Lopez-Lopez, an extern priest serving in the Archdiocese of Los Angeles by way of Tivoli, Italy. http://www.hd.net/blogs/coming-up-on-tuesday-june-21/

In Re: Delaware Clergy Sexual Abuse Cases, (2011) Delaware Superior Court and U.S. Bankruptcy Court– Participation in, and consummation of $109,000,000.00 (approx.) global settlement of over 145 claims on behalf of victims of sexual abuse in the State of Delaware, involving the Diocese of Wilmington, the Brothers of the Holy Cross, and the Capuchin Friars.

Doe v. Doe, (2010) Orange County Superior Court; Doe v. Doe, (2010) Los Angeles County Superior Court– Consummation of $2,200,000.00 settlement on behalf of victim alleging childhood sexual abuse at the hands of notorious priest of the Archdiocese of Los Angeles—Father Michael Stephen Baker—on the eve of trial.

110 Separate Actions Against the Society of Jesus, Oregon Province, (2007, 2011) Various Superior Courts in the State of Alaska and U.S. Bankruptcy Court– Consummation of $216,000,000.00 global settlement of 110 separate sexual abuse claims against the Society of Jesus, Oregon Province.

Jane CR Doe v. Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange, et al.; Jane ALS Doe v. Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange, et al.; Jane KE Doe v. Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange, et al.; Jane A. Doe v. Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange, et al., (2007) Orange County Superior Court– Consummation of $6,685,000.00 global settlement of four high-profile cases involving the sexual abuse of students at Roman Catholic high schools and parishes in the County of Orange, during the third week of trial in the Jane C.R. Doe matter.

In Re: The Clergy Cases II (JCCP No.: 4297), (2007) San Diego Superior Court– Participation in, and consummation of $198,100,000.00 global settlement of 144 sexual abuse claims during the sixth month of Chapter 11 bankruptcy proceeding. The Diocese had filed for Chapter 11 protection just days prior to Manly, Stewart & Finaldi commencing trial in the John B. v. John Doe 1, et al. matter.

In Re: The Clergy Cases I (JCCP No.: 4286), (2007) Los Angeles Superior Court– Participation in, and consummation of $660,000,000.00 global settlement of 508 sexual abuse claims just days prior to Manly, Stewart & Finaldi commencing trial in the John Doe v. Roman Catholic Bishop of Los Angeles, et al. matter.

In Re: The Clergy Cases I (JCCP No.: 4286), (2004) Orange County Superior Court– Participation in, and consummation of $100,000,000.00 global settlement of 87 sexual abuse claims filed on behalf of individuals sexually assaulted by priests and agents of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Orange, California.

Ryan DiMaria v. Roman Catholic Bishop of Orange, et al., (1997) Orange County Superior Court$5,200,000.00 settlement on behalf of Plaintiff who alleged sexual abuse at the hands of a Mater Dei High School Principal and Roman Catholic priest Father Michael Harris.


Personal Biography

Born in San Mateo and raised in Southern California, in 1986, John obtained a Bachelor's degree in international relations and a certificate in defense and strategic studies from the University of Southern California. In 1990, John received his J.D. from Pepperdine University Law School, and thereafter served as a law clerk to the General Counsel of the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission in Washington, D.C. John also served 10 years in the United States military, as a U.S. Navy intelligence officer. A member of the California, Arizona, New York and Alaska Bar Associations, John is admitted to practice in numerous federal district courts.

Child Sexual Abuse
Sexually Abused in School
Coach Sexual Abuse
Foster Care Abuse
Boy Scout Abuse
Sexual Abuse in Sports
Sexual Abuse at Work
Government Sexual Abuse
Clergy Sexual Abuse
Irish Christian Brothers
Miramonte Sex Abuse Case
Sexual Harassment
Sexual Hazing
Sexual Bullying
Sexual Assault
Cyber Stalking
Internet Sex Crimes
Incest
Rape
Sex with a Minor
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The information on this website is for general information purposes only. Nothing on this site should be taken as legal advice for any individual case or situation. This information is not intended to create, and receipt or viewing does not constitute, an attorney-client relationship. Manly, Stewart & Finaldi attorneys are licensed to practice law in California, New York, Arizona, Texas and Alaska.
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