Archive for March, 2019

Former Florida youth pastor arrested again for sexual assault

March 19, 2019

A former youth pastor at an Estero church is back behind bars after being caught in a hotel with the same girl he was previously arrested for having inappropriate contact with.

According to law enforcement, Jerred Peacock was caught in a hotel last year with the same girl he is accused of sexually assaulting again.

Peacock had a “no contact” order with the girl, but he has continued to contact her after the arrest last October.

He is being held without bond on a new sex assault charge.

New Mexico priest is charged with raping an 8-year-old girl until she vomited and then making her clean it up

March 18, 2019

Sabine Griego, 81, was arrested on Tuesday by authorities in New Mexico
  • Sabine Griego, 81, faces rape charges from assaults which allegedly took place nearly 30 years ago 
  • Authorities allege Griego assaulted an 8-year-old girl who was an altar server at a New Mexico Catholic school 
  • Police say Griego raped the girl on a number of occasions, which included vicious beatings that resulted in a broken nose
  • Griego has been implicated in at least eight cases that were closed by authorities
  • Police say they have evidence the Archdiocese of Santa Fe knew about the alleged rapes for at least 15 years 
  • Griego is believed to have raped more than 30 children over the course of decades

A former priest raped an 8-year-old girl nearly 30 years ago to the point where she vomited – only to then force her to clean up the mess, it has been alleged.

Sabine Griego, 81, was arrested on Tuesday at his New Mexico home for the alleged assault and other rapes involving the girl.

Griego, a resident of Las Vegas, New Mexico, has been charged with one count of sexual penetration of a minor and coercion resulting in great bodily harm and mental anguish.

The charges are just the latest allegations against Griego, who has also been accused of sexually assaulting more than 30 children over decades while in the Archdiocese of Santa Fe, according to the Santa Fe New Mexican.

Between 1993 and 1995, Griego was implicated in eight closed cases. He was put on leave from the church in 1993, but it wasn’t until 2005 that he was formally dismissed from clerical duties.

Griego is currently being held without bond at the San Miguel County Detention Center in Las Vegas.

Authorities allege that the archdiocese knew of the latest rape allegations made by the girl, ‘Jane Doe A’, for at least 15 years.

The arrest want cites a 2004 letter, which was marked ‘confidential,’ and signed by then-Archbishop Michael J. Sheehan.

The letter provides ‘direct evidence’ that the rape occurred and that the archdiocese discovered it after conducting its own investigation.

The first alleged rape took place after Griego took the girl to the church rectory. He told her that they would ‘play a special game,’ authorities allege.

It was during the assault that the girl vomited and was then forced to clean up the mess, authorities allege.

The girl told investigators that Griego raped her numerous times and that on a few occasions he made her drink wine.

Griego is also alleged to have used a wooden spoon to assault and beat her.

Griego is alleged to have targeted the girl when she was just in second grade at Queen of Heaven Catholic School.

She told investigators that Griego would spend time with her after school and over lunch.

He also offered her ‘weird black Halloween candy,’ police allege.

On one occasion, Griego began to allegedly rape her, knocking her to the floor and covering her mouth.

Griego has been implicated in at least eight cases that have been closed. He is believed to have raped dozens of children

She then bit his hand, prompting Griego to slap her. He then continued with the rape.

A year later, during another rape, Griego got angry with the girl and slammed her face into a table, resulting in a broken nose, police allege.

Former Catholic priest from York County arrested, accused of molesting two altar boys

March 16, 2019

John G. Allen is charged with four counts of indecent assault and two counts of corruption of minors.

John G. Allen, from the Pennsylvania abusive pedophile priests list

A defrocked York County priest was arrested Thursday morning on charges that he molested two altar boys between 1997 and 2002.

John G. Allen, who served in several parishes throughout Lebanon, Gettysburg, Selinsgrove, New Cumberland, Steelton, Lancaster and Harrisburg, is facing four counts of indecent assault and two counts of corruption of minors, according to the Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office. 

Allen, a 75-year-old York County resident, abused the victims while they served as altar boys at St. Margaret Mary’s Alacoque Church in Harrisburg, the criminal complaint said.

One victim said he was fondled from ages 10 to 13. The other victim said he was assaulted from ages 12 to 14, according to the district attorney’s office.

Allen in August was among 301 abusive priests named in a Pennsylvania grand jury report and 71 named by the Diocese of Harrisburg. 

A former altar boy filed a lawsuit in August against the Diocese of Harrisburg, claiming former Bishop William Keeler failed to protect him from an abusive priest.

Diocese concerns about priest date back to 1970

The Harrisburg diocese was concerned about Father John Allen’s sexual behavior in January 1970, but did not intervene for two decades.

In those 20 years, Allen sexually abused multiple young boys, according to the grand jury report, and, in 1992, he was arrested in Lancaster for soliciting an undercover officer for sex.

The diocese sent him for a mental health evaluation in 1991. Two years later, Bishop Nicholas Dattilo was told Allen went to a Sex and Love Addicts Anonymous meeting, where the priest “gave the impression to members that he was a pedophile and had an obsession with young boys,” according to diocese records shared in the grand jury report.

Dattilo didn’t remove him from practice. Instead, Allen took a leave of absence from St. Joseph in Lancaster in November 1992 and was reinstated eight months later at St. Theresa in New Cumberland, where he served from 1993 to 1995. 

After a man came forward in April 2002 and reported he was abused by Allen for four years, from age 14 to 18, the Harrisburg diocese removed him as a priest. 

Two months later, the diocese received a call to verify his employment for a new job. The caller didn’t want any additional information or a reference. 

And Father M. McFadden said, “I did not volunteer any additional information,” according to the Pennsylvania grand jury report.

Allen was officially dismissed from the Catholic church by Pope Benedict XVI on Feb. 17, 2006. 

Ex-N.J. priest accused of sex abuse found shot to death in Nevada home

March 13, 2019

A former New Jersey priest who had been “credibly accused” of sexually abusing minors was found dead in his Nevada home, and police are treating it as a homicide.

The body of John Capparelli was found Saturday morning by police conducting a welfare check at his home in Henderson, about 15 miles south of Las Vegas.

The Clark County Coroner’s Office said Capparelli, 70, died from a single gunshot wound to the neck. His body was found in the kitchen, a spokesperson said.

Police said they did not have a suspect at this time.

Capparelli’s name appeared on a list in February with 187 other clergy the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark said had been “credibly accused” of abusing minors.

He was never convicted of a crime, but he was laicized and permanently removed from ministry, according to the archdiocese.

He denied the allegations to in an interview in 2011, saying: “Everything is not true.”

Capparelli moved to Nevada in 2016, the outlet reports.

The archdiocese said he worked at a number of churches and schools in New Jersey, including Our Lady of Fatima Church in North Bergen; Oratory Prep School in Summit; Holy Trinity in Westfield; and The Church of Saint Theresa in Kenilworth. He was also a temporary chaplain at Valley Hospital in Ridgewood.

Cardinal George Pell Sentenced To 6 Years In Prison For Sexual Abuse

March 13, 2019

Australian Cardinal George Pell was sentenced to six years in prison on Wednesday for molesting two choir boys in Melbourne in 1996.

Pell, who served as the Vatican treasurer and was once part of Pope Francis’ inner circle, is the highest-ranking member of the Roman Catholic Church to be convicted of child sexual assault.

He was convicted of five counts at a hearing in December, but the media were prohibited from reporting about the details of the case due to a broad gag order meant to protect the integrity of the trial. He faced a total of 10 years in prison for each of those charges.

Pell, 77, will be eligible for parole in three years and six months and, if released, will be required to register as a sex offender for life. Judge Peter Kidd cited the cardinal’s advanced age and various health issues in considering his sentence.

“Each year you spend in custody will represent a substantial portion of your remaining life expectancy,” Kidd said Wednesday.

The sentenced stems from two incidents in the 1990s when Pell was the newly appointed Archbishop of Melbourne. He was accused of sexually assaulting two 13-year-old altar boys shortly after Sunday Mass, including an instance when Pell forced one of the boys to perform oral sex on him. During a separate incident, Pell was accused of grabbing a boy’s genitals.

A unanimous jury found him guilty of five counts of sexual abuse. Pell has maintained his innocence throughout the trial, and his lawyers have said they would appeal the conviction.

During the sentencing, Kidd said that, in his view, Pell’s “conduct was permeated by staggering arrogance” and called the actions “grave” and brazen.

“The argument of your counsel that this offending was committed by you, George Pell the man, and not by you, George Pell the archbishop, must be roundly rejected,” Kidd noted. “I do so without hesitation.”

One of the men who was abused by Pell released a statement through his lawyer after the verdict was handed down, saying the judge was “meticulous” in his ruling. But, he noted, it was “hard … for the time being, to take comfort in this outcome.”

“I appreciate that the Court has acknowledged what was inflicted upon me as a child,” the unnamed victim’s said through his attorney, Vivian Waller. “However, there is no rest for me. Everything is overshadowed by the forthcoming appeal.”

He added: “Being a witness in a criminal case has not been easy. I’m doing my best to hold myself and my family together.” 

Former Imam Shafeeq Moulavi arrested for child sex abuse

March 10, 2019

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM:  The special police team has arrested former Tholicode Imam Shafeeq Moulavi, who has been accused of sexually abusing a 15-year-old girl. The accused and his aide Fazil, a native of Perumbavoor, were arrested from a lodge in Madurai, putting an end to almost three weeks of man hunt. District Crime Branch DySP D Asokan said Fazil was the driver of the 35-year-old accused and had taken him to several places to avoid the police net. Before being holed up in Madurai, the accused took shelter in more than 10 places. 

“After leaving the state, he went into hiding in several places in Tamil Nadu and Andhra Pradesh. He changed his appearance to give the police a slip,” Asokan said. The police said Noushad, one of the relatives of the former Imam, was into plywood business and hence he knew several places in TN and AP. “Noushad was the one who dissuaded the accused from surrendering before the police. He suggested the accused the places to go into hiding,” the officer said. 

The police ascertained the accused did not go to Bengaluru and statements to that effect were given to derail the probe. After grilling Noushad and another person, Sudheer, who was also arrested for his connection in this case, the police came to know the accused was in Madurai. A seven-member team led by Asokan went to Madurai and arrested the accused, his driver and also seized their car. 

Latvian priest charged with abusing vulnerable teen

March 9, 2019

Riga (AFP) – A Latvian Catholic priest and two other people have been charged with human trafficking and sexual abuse of a male teenager with learning difficulties, local media reported Friday, citing justice authorities.

Laura Majevska, a spokeswoman for Latvia’s prosecutor general confirmed the charges against three suspects, although she refused to reveal their identities.

Citing unnamed sources, the Baltic News Service named one of the accused as Pavels Zeila (photo not available), a 73-year-old priest, who had served in a diocese in eastern Latvia.

“The abuser did horrible things to me while talking to me in a sweet voice: ‘What a cute boy!’,” the alleged victim told Latvian public broadcaster LTV in an interview aired before the indictment.

“Only later I was told he is a priest,” the vulnerable young man said, in the broadcast to a national audience.

Police arrested Zeila on suspicion of abuse in September, but he has since been released on bail.

Describing the details of the allegations at the time of the arrest, Armands Lubarts, chief of a police task force on human trafficking and pimping, told media that “one of the suspects ‘delivered’ the defenceless victim for a fee.

“The church representative, who was the end buyer, paid the fee and then committed violent sexual crimes against the victim,” Lubarts added.

Neither Zeila nor his lawyers have commented on the charges, which come as the Catholic Church has vowed to fight child abuse within its ranks.

New accusation of sex abuse rock Chile’s Catholic church

March 8, 2019

Image result for ricardo ezzati

Ricardo Ezzati covered up sex abuse by priests

SANTIAGO, Chile (AP) — Chile’s Roman Catholic church, already the target of Vatican sanctions, was being shaken Tuesday by yet another allegation of priestly abuse and high-level cover-up.

Daniel Rojas Alvarez, a 43-year-old indigent man, appeared on a state television broadcast Monday night saying that a priest at the Santiago Cathedral had drugged and raped him in 2015. He said Cardinal Ricardo Ezzati had given him money when told of the attack and told him not to report it.

“The case is terrible, unacceptable,” said Fernando Ramos, secretary-general of the Chilean bishop’s conference, at a news conference Tuesday ahead of his trip to the Vatican for a worldwide meeting of bishops on preventing sexual abuse.

The Santiago archbishopric acknowledged in a statement that it had received a complaint against the priest, Rigoberto Rivera, in the summer of 2015 and said he had been forbidden to celebrate public Mass since last year. His attorney, Sandra Pinto, denied the allegations.

A series of earlier cases investigated by the Vatican led Pope Francis last year to request all 31 active bishops to offer their resignations, complaining of “a culture of abuse and cover-up.”

Ezzati, who offered his resignation in 2017 on turning 75, has denied committing any cover-ups of sexual abuse.

Government prosecutors are also investigating Ezzati on allegations he covered up abuse committed by his top deputy, and they have raided the Santiago ecclesiastical court and other church buildings looking for evidence. Another former bishop, Juan Barros, was also questioned last year by prosecutors.

A weeping Rojas Alvarez, who has been living in the streets, told Channel 7 that he had gone to the cathedral seeking help to buy medicine for his ailing daughter.

He alleged that Rivera had given him water that left him feeling weak, then kissed him and raped him.

“I began to cry, to wake up. A terrible situation of total vulnerability,” he said.

He said he reported the attack to Ezzati, and said the cardinal asked him to pray for the priest, gave him the equivalent of $45 and asked him not to tell anybody what had happened.

In addition to a criminal complaint, Rojas has filed a suit seeking the equivalent of about $530,000 from Rivera and the archbishopric. The bishop’s office is also facing demands for similar sums from three victims of Fernando Karadima, the country’s most notorious pedophile priest.

The archbishopric said it had first received another complaint about Rivera in 2011, but didn’t investigate because “it was not possible to contact the complainant.”

It said Rivera received canonical punishment in September 2018, but said it would start “an exhaustive review to clarify” all of the cases. He is allowed to celebrate Mass only in private, accompanied by a person over 50, and to have no meetings with youth.

French cardinal Barbarin convicted over sex abuse cover-up

March 8, 2019

Barbarin was found guilty of failing to report the abuse of a minor between 2014 and 2015

Lyon (AFP) – The archbishop of Lyon, the most senior French Catholic cleric caught up in the paedophilia scandals that have rocked the church, was convicted of helping covering up abuse and handed a six-month suspended jail term on Thursday.

Cardinal Philippe Barbarin, who was not in court, was found guilty of failing to report the abuse of a minor between 2014 and 2015.

His lawyers announced immediately that he would appeal the judgement.

“The reasoning of the court is not convincing,” lawyer Jean-Felix Luciani told reporters. “We will contest this decision by all the means possible.”

Barbarin, 68, faced long-standing allegations from victims’ groups that he failed to report a priest under his authority to police after learning of abuse which took place in the 1980s and 90s.

But prosecutors judged that those crimes were beyond the statute of limitations — meaning they were too old to prosecute — and declined to press charges.

During the trial, victims accused Barbarin of being aware of the abuse allegations from at least 2010 and then trying to cover up the scandal, under orders from the Vatican, from 2015.

Francois Devaux, who leads a victim’s group in Lyon, called Thursday’s verdict a “major victory for child protection.”

The Catholic Church has been roiled in recent years by claims against priests which have come to light in the wake of a global move by victims to go public with evidence.

Clerics have been denounced in countries as far afield as Australia, Brazil, Chile, Ireland, and the United States, leading Pope Francis to promise to rid the church of a scourge that has done enormous damage to its standing.

Philadelphia priest charged with raping a minor and filming the abuse

March 6, 2019

Armand “Short Eyes” Garcia

A Philadelphia priest has been charged over claims he raped a teenage altar girl and filmed the abuse. 

Armand Garcia, 49, was pastor at Saint Martin of Tours in Oxford Circle, but his alleged crime took place in 2014 while he was at the Immaculate Heart of Mary in Roxborough.

Garcia was placed on administrative leave a year ago when the police investigation began.

The investigation began in 2018 with allegations Garcia abused a teenage girl between 2014 and 2017.

The alleged acts happened after the female teenage parishioner was 16. She was a member of the Immaculate Heart of Mary.

“Disgusted, disgusted. I feel like it was swept under the rug, like it was purposely hidden from the school and parishioners,” said Eugene Iacovelli, a parishioner of Immaculate Heart of Mary.

I’m very upset, I feel for our pastor, it puts a lot of stress on this parish,” said parishioner, Peter Caruso.

But, oddly enough, not for the victim.

The Archdiocese released a statement on Tuesday calling the allegations “serious and disturbing.”

“The Archdiocese is cooperating fully with law enforcement regarding this matter and remains fervently committed to preventing child abuse as well as protecting the children and young people entrusted to its care.”

In 2018 Garcia was placed on administrative leave by the Archdiocese when they learned of the investigation. He lived in a private residence, was not allowed to present himself as a priest, and did not have access to parishes or schools.
Prior to his leave he was stationed at Saint Martin of Tours in the Summerdale section of the city.

Garcia was ordained in 2005.

The arrest comes at a time when the Catholic Church is under more scrutiny than ever with the Vatican handling a worldwide priest abuse scandal and here in Pennsylvania, with Attorney General Josh Shapiro’s release of grand jury reports of priest abuse spanning decades.

Oakland priest accused of sexually abusing child flees country

March 5, 2019

A Roman Catholic Diocese of Oakland priest accused of sexual misconduct with a minor has fled the country, according to church officials.

Father Alex Castillo was placed on administrative leave Jan. 31 by the diocese, which said it had received an allegation of inappropriate behavior from a male victim, diocese officials confirmed Monday.

Church officials were in touch with Castillo until Feb. 21, when several people attempted to contact him unsuccessfully, said Helen Osman, a diocese spokeswoman. She said the diocese had to check every jail and hospital in the area before they could report him missing Feb. 23.

Less than a week later, he was apparently located by police. Oakland police on Friday informed church officials that Castillo had been “found” but would not confirm where, Osman said.

“They would not provide us with information on his whereabouts, except that he has left the country,” she said. “They also informed us they have completed their criminal investigation.”

Church and law enforcement officials have not released other details about the alleged sexual misconduct. Castillo remains on leave and may not present himself as a priest or work as a priest in a public ministry, church officials said.

“It should be noted during this investigation so far, it has not been determined any crimes have been committed in the City of Oakland,” said Johnna Watson, an Oakland police spokeswoman.

The case is now being handled by the Alameda County district attorney’s office, which did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

A diocesan review board will include criminal justice experts, mental health advocates and two diocese officials to re-evaluate Castillo’s suitability for ministry and present their findings to Bishop Michael Barber.

Pike County pastor arrested on teen sex abuse charges

March 4, 2019

PITTSFIELD, Ill. — The pastor of a Detroit, Ill., church has been arrested on sex abuse charges.

Charging documents show that Jeffrey S. Krupinski, 51, was charged with two counts of aggravated criminal sexual assault in Pike County Circuit Court. The charges allege that Krupinski touched a 14-year-old girl for sexual gratification. The incident reportedly took place July 4.

The Detroit Christian Church’s Facebook page said Krupinski’s first day at the church was July 1.

Court records show Krupinski was arrested Oct. 26.

If convicted of the Class 2 felonies, he faces three to seven years in the Illinois Department of Corrections.

He posted $4,500 on Friday to be released from the Pike County Jail. He was ordered to not have contact with any person under age 18 nor the accuser in the case.

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