RELIGION

Maine man who accused US founder of Haiti orphanage of abuse is sued for defamation

FILE - In this Friday, Sept. 5, 2014, file photo, Michael Geilenfeld waits in handcuffs as the manager of his orphanage sits with him in the back of a police truck outside the St. Joseph's Home For Boys after police closed it down in the Delmas area of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Hearts With Haiti, a nonprofit that raises money for the orphanage, and Geilenfeld have accused activist Paul Kendrick of spreading falsehoods that have cost the charity more than $2 million in donations.  A jury that was seated Monday, July 6, 2015 for the trail. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery, File)

FILE - In this Friday, Sept. 5, 2014, file photo, Michael Geilenfeld waits in handcuffs as the manager of his orphanage sits with him in the back of a police truck outside the St. Joseph's Home For Boys after police closed it down in the Delmas area of Port-au-Prince, Haiti. Hearts With Haiti, a nonprofit that raises money for the orphanage, and Geilenfeld have accused activist Paul Kendrick of spreading falsehoods that have cost the charity more than $2 million in donations. A jury that was seated Monday, July 6, 2015 for the trail. (AP Photo/Dieu Nalio Chery, File)  (The Associated Press)

An advocate for sexually abused children has used aggressive tactics to campaign against those he believes have harmed children or covered up for abusers. A federal jury will decide whether the activist, Paul Kendrick, went too far in leveling accusations against an orphanage founder in Haiti.

Michael Geilenfeld and Raleigh, North Carolina-based Hearts with Haiti have sued for defamation, saying Kendrick's "false and heinous" allegations have cost the charity more than $2 million in donations.

Kendrick, who lives in Freeport, Maine, says he's eager for jurors to hear about what he described as "disgusting and despicable" things that were done to the alleged victims.

Geilenfeld's lawyers hold Kendrick responsible for Geilenfeld's arrest in Haiti. A judge cleared Geilenfeld, but Haiti's justice minister has said the verdict was improperly reached and there will be additional proceedings.