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Judge: Rape lawsuit against Harvard can proceed

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BOSTON >> A Massachusetts judge has reinstated a lawsuit against Harvard University over child rape allegations against a now-dead swim coach that date back four decades.

The Boston Globe reported Friday that the ruling on Monday cited a new state law that extended the statute of limitations in child sex abuse cases.

The lawsuit was filed in 2012 by a 57-year-old man who alleges he was raped and molested more than 100 times by swim coach Benn Merritt over three years beginning when he was 12 in 1969, usually at the Harvard pool.

The lawsuit had been dismissed because the statute of limitations expired.

Harvard spokesman Jeff Neal says the alleged acts are “despicable,” but there’s no basis to suggest that the university had any knowledge of them.

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