SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — Attorneys are battling over whether Mormon Church President Thomas S. Monson should be required to testify in a case about alleged sexual abuse that occurred within a now-defunct church program that placed thousands of American Indian children with Mormon families.

Lawyers for four people suing the religion say Monson has "unique information" because he was a high-ranking leader in the religion during the time the abuses occurred. The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints disagrees in a new court filing, saying Monson's duties in the 1960s-1970s didn't include oversight of the program.

Monson became president in 2008. The four alleged victims accuse religious leaders of not doing enough to protect them from their abusers. Church officials aren't commenting on the specifics of the lawsuits, but say the religion doesn't tolerate any kind of abuse.