NFL's Saints seek to shield PR help to church in sex crisis

A New Orleans Saints helmet sits on the bench during the first half of an NFL preseason football game against the Cleveland Browns, Thursday, Aug. 10, 2017, in Cleveland. (AP Photo/Ron Schwane)

NEW ORLEANS (AP) - The New Orleans Saints are going to court to keep the public from seeing hundreds of emails that allegedly show team executives doing public relations damage control for the area’s Roman Catholic archdiocese to help it contain the fallout from a burgeoning sexual abuse crisis.

Attorneys for several men suing the church say 276 documents they obtained through discovery show the NFL team aided the Archdiocese of New Orleans in its “pattern and practice of concealing its crimes.”

Saints attorneys dispute any suggestion the team helped cover up crimes and say the documents were intended to be private.

In a statement, the Saints organization said they had “no interest in concealing information from the press or public.”

“At the current discovery stage in the case of Doe v. Archdiocese, the Saints, through their counsel, have merely requested the court to apply the normal rules of civil discovery to the documents that the Saints produced and delivered to Mr. Doe’s counsel,” they said in the statement.

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