Kerala church rape case: Police treading with caution in terms of arrests

The police are treading a cautious path ensuring that they don’t rush into any arrests causing embarrassment to the CPM-led LDF Government.

Published: 13th July 2018 05:11 AM  |   Last Updated: 13th July 2018 01:47 PM   |  A+A-

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Image for representational purpose only. (PTI)

By Express News Service

KOCHI: Two prominent sleaze cases involving the clergy have stirred debates in Kerala, but the police are treading a cautious path ensuring that they don’t rush into any arrests causing embarrassment to the CPM-led LDF Government.

It’s certain arrest of the accused is imminent as the victims in both the cases have given statements and it’s all enough for the police to arrest the accused.

“Once a victim in a rape allegation case deposes before a magistrate, the police have no other option but to arrest the accused for detailed investigation,” said Suman Chakravarthy, senior government pleader, Kerala High Court.

Senior police officers also concurred they need to proceed with the formalities in both the cases as victims have given statements before the courts.

In the first case in which a married school teacher was allegedly sexually abused by four priests belonging to different dioceses of the Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church after blackmailing her over a confession she made in church, one of the priests Fr Job Mathew surrendered before the Crime Branch team probing the case.

His surrender comes a day after the Kerala High Court dismissed the anticipatory bail pleas of him and two other priests, Abraham Varghese alias Sony and Jaise K George. The police are yet to finalise the proceedings to be initiated against the other three priests.

In the other case, a nun belonging to the Catholic Congregation of Missionaries of Jesus in Jalandhar filed a police complaint against the Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal alleging he raped and subjected her to unnatural sex 13 times in a convent in Kuravilangad from 2014.

The police are expecting the accused to surrender soon as he is not likely to get an anticipatory bail.

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