MN- Fugitive Indian pedophile priest must be extradited to US, court rules
For immediate release: Sunday, Sept. 7, 2014
Statement by Mary Caplan of New York City, SNAP Leader, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (917 439 4187, firstname.lastname@example.org)
Another Indian court has ruled that a fugitive predator priest must return to the U.S. to face criminal child sex abuse charges, according to the Associated Press.
Twice this year, United Nations panels have harshly criticized Vatican officials for their refusal to help law enforcement apprehend this dangerous cleric, Fr. Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul, who molested girls in the Crookston, MN diocese and worked at one event (maybe more) in the St. Paul Archdiocese.
We’ve long worried about the safety of girls in India near Fr. Jeyapaul, especially since his bishop put him in charge of overseeing schools, knowing full well that he was a fugitive from US criminal authorities.
Fr. Jeyapaul is one of an increasing number of accused predator priests who are allowed to flee to other countries despite credible child sex abuse allegations or sometimes arrest warrants.
According to BishopAccountability.org, Minnesota Catholic officials “knew of rumors about inappropriate behavior by (Jeyapaul) in 8/04” but Jeyapaul “suddenly returned to India in 9/05.”
We applaud Fr. Jeyapaul’s brave victims. We are grateful to law enforcement – in the US and in India – for pursuing this dangerous predator.
Fr. Jeyapaul shouldn’t be returning because secular officials are forcing him to. He should be coming back to the US because his church supervisors threatened to stop paying him until he does. It’s tragic that it requires international pressure – from victims, journalists and law enforcement – to get Catholic officials to simply honor their legal obligation and get a predator priest back to America to face justice.
Bishops in Minnesota and India have protected and continue to protect this serial child predator, by paying him, moving him, and concealing records about him and his crimes. Shame on them.
And shame on every Vatican official who has refused to take action to safeguard children from Fr. Jeyapaul.
We call on every Catholic employee and parishioner – in Minnesota and in India – who has suspicions or knowledge of Jeyapaul’s crimes to call police and prosecutors immediately.
Here's a statement from one of Fr. Jeyapaul's victims made several years ago:
(SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests, is the world’s oldest and largest support group for clergy abuse victims. We’ve been around for 25 years and have more than 20,000 members. Despite the word “priest” in our title, we have members who were molested by religious figures of all denominations, including nuns, rabbis, bishops, and Protestant ministers. Our website is SNAPnetwork.org)
50 State AG Call for Grand Jury
Any investigation must be:
- independent of and separate from the church
- must have subpoena powers and ability to compel testimony under oath
Anything short of these criteria is a sham and whitewash.
In addition, write letters to the editor, make phone calls to politicians as they can apply pressure to keep them responsive to our demand. We need to make efforts to ensure that they follow up on what the state is doing to investigate these crimes.
The Attorneys General of forty states have inquired about the grand jury process in Pennsylvania. Let's get statewide investigations going in fifty states.
Note to Letter Writers
Use your own words and style of writing. Cut and paste from the templates as you wish. Include your experiences, whether as a survivor or as a member of the community. And relate your letter to the state you were abused in or state now living in.