Puerto Rico- Priest faces federal child sex abuse charges, SNAP responds
For immediate release: Tuesday, May 13, 2014
Statement by Barbara Dorris of St. Louis, Outreach Director of SNAP, the Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests (314 503 0003 cell, [email protected])
A Puerto Rican priest was arrested on federal sexual abuse charges involving children. We are grateful that law enforcement officials are taking serious action to protect children.
Fr. Israel Berrios, from the Diocese of Caguas, is charged with sexually trafficking minors. This is reportedly the first federal case of its kind in Puerto Rico. We hope this signals a new vigor in holding predators accountable and protecting children.
We are grateful to the brave victims who came forward and worked with federal investigators. We urge Catholic church officials in Puerto Rico to aggressively reach out to anyone who saw, suspected, or suffered child sex crimes. They should also post the names, photos, and work histories of all credibly accused child molesting clergy.
(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 15,000 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)