SNAP responds to extradition of former Fargo priest
We are glad that that Fr. Fernando Sayasaya - a former Fargo priest - will be returned to the United States to face a trial for his crimes. It is rare that victims of a predator priest have the chance to see the justice system work in their favor. We are hopeful that this trial will give them some peace and will protect children from this child molesting cleric.
This case is another example in a string of incidents in which church officials have let a foreign priest return to his country after finding out about abuse allegations against him (the other most recent case is of Fr. Jeyapaul, in Minnesota). This is a disturbing practice and needs to end. As with all priests, whether they are US citizens or otherwise, church officials should immediately turn over all evidence of abuse to the police and let them investigate. The situation with Fr. Sayasaya is a somber reminder of how much further the church hierarchy needs to go to live up to their promise of being open and honest about child sex crimes.
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.
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.