- Roman Catholic church in India lifted suspension of Rev. Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul, who was convicted of sexually assaulting a minor
- Jeyapaul, 61, was suspended by his local diocese in 2010 after being accused of sexually abusing two teen girls in Minnesota
- He later pleaded guilty to molesting of the teens, who is not publicly identified, and served time in jail
- Megan Peterson, a 26-year-old artist in NY, was 14 when she said the priest raped her in his office and called the decision a ‘slap in the face’
- Jeyapaul was accused of sexually abusing the teens while serving as priest in Crookston Diocese in Minnesota between 2004 and 2005
A Catholic priest who was convicted last year by a U.S. court of sexually abusing a minor was reinstated by the church last month.
Indian priest Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul, 61, was suspended for less than a full year by his local diocese in India five years ago after being accused of sexually abusing two girls during a posting to Minnesota.
He later pleaded guilty to molesting one of the teenagers, who has not been identified publicly, and served time in jail. Both of the girls were 14 at the time of the alleged abuse.
The Roman Catholic church in southern India lifted the suspension of Indian priest Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul, 61, convicted last year of sexually assaulting a 14-year-old girl in the United States more than a decade ago
Megan Peterson, a 26-year-old artist living in New York, (pictured in 2012) accused Jeyapaul of raping her in his office whens he was 14. Jeyapaul pleaded guilty to sexual assault of a different girl in a plea deal in which the charges in his abuse of Peterson were dropped
In January, the Vatican lifted Jeyapaul’s suspension following a recommendation by an Indian bishop.
Megan Peterson, now 26 and living in New York, accused Jeyapaul of raping and sexually assaulting her over the course of a year when she was 14, according to the New York Daily News.
She was shocked after learning the priest had been reinstated by Catholic Church officials.
‘It’s very clear what side the Church is on and it’s not about child protection or about morality,’ Peterson, an artist who resides in Queens, told the New York Daily News.
‘The bottom line is that the Church is not protecting children.’
The suspension of Jeyapaul was lifted last month after the bishop of the Ootacamund Diocese in India’s Tamil Nadu state consulted with church authorities at the Vatican, said Rev. Sebastian Selvanathan, a spokesman for the diocese.
Bishop Arulappan Amalraj of Ootacamund had referred Jeyapaul’s case to the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, and the suspension was lifted on the church body’s advice, according to Selvanathan.
Jeyapaul was accused of sexually abusing Peterson and another teenage girl while serving as a priest in Crookston Diocese in Minnesota between 2004 and 2005.
The priest then fled to southern India following the allegations.
The Diocese of Ooty in southern India’s Tamil Nadu state suspended Jeyapaul in 2010 before he was arrested by Interpol in 2012 and extradited to the U.S. to face trial.
Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3462976/Catholic-priest-convicted-sexually-abusing-minor-reinstated-church.html#ixzz44CZVyMV1
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