LUZERNE COUNTY, Pa. -- A lawsuit filed Monday alleges that a Boy Scout leader sexually abused a young boy from Luzerne County beginning in the mid-1970s and continued to sexually abuse him for years until he was 17 years old.
The suit also claims that Boy Scouts of America conspired to keep hundreds of incidents of sexual abuse a secret and that the organization failed to protect its youngest participants.
That scout leader is identified as Paul Antosh. Court papers show Antosh is from the Wilkes-Barre area. The victim is now 57 years old.
At the time of the alleged abuse, Antosh was assistant scoutmaster of Boy Scout Troop 100 in Plains Township.
The abuse allegedly happened at his home and during camping trips to Camp Acahela in Blakeslee.
"When a young boy is out in the woods alone, looking to become a leader himself, looking to establish his self-confidence, looking to learn new skills, and is taken advantage of by someone he looks up to, this is a crisis that affects that young boy his whole life," said Stewart Eisenberg, the victim's attorney.
According to the victim, Antosh gave him drugs and alcohol before sexually assaulting him hundreds of times.
That victim and his attorneys now believe there are hundreds more victims of other scout leaders across the country.
"This individual has the courage to come forward and start the process of the over 800 individuals that we currently represent, and this lawsuit has been filed against the Boy Scouts and his abuser," Eisenberg said.
According to Eisenberg, the lawsuit filed Monday is part of a larger effort to hold Boy Scouts of America accountable for abuse perpetrated within its ranks, alleging that the organization knew about the abuse and did nothing to stop it.
Antosh has not been criminally charged. Attorneys say more lawsuits may be coming.