The Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests
SNAP Press Statement
For immediate release: Wednesday, January 5, 2011
Predator priest in custody - abuse victims respond
Statement by Barbara Dorris, outreach director for SNAP 314 862 7688 [email protected]
We applaud law enforcement in both Canada and Belgium for working to take Fr. Eric Dejaeger into custody. Dejaeger has already served time in a Canadian prison for assaulting children but has been allowed to live and function as a priest in Belgium. Children are safe when predators are behind bars.
We hope that church officials will voluntarily turn over all documents regarding Dejaeger and work with law enforcement to ensure that this predator will no longer have access to children.
We encourage anyone who has been harmed by Dejaeger to come forward and seek help. That anyone who has seen or suspected these crimes will call the police.
(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 23 years and have more than 10,000 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)
Contact David Clohessy (314-566-9790 cell, [email protected]), Barbara Blaine (312-399-4747, [email protected]), Peter Isely (414-429-7259, [email protected]), Barbara Dorris (314-862-7688 home, 314-503-0003 cell, [email protected])
Fugitive Canadian priest in Belgian custody
Last Updated: Wednesday, January 5, 2011 | 11:15 AM CST
Rev. Eric Dejaeger is seen in an RCMP photo in Baker Lake, Nunavut. Dejaeger fled to Belgium in 1995, but has been taken into custody this week, a Belgian official says. (Interpol)
A Canadian Catholic priest who is wanted on charges of sex crimes against children has been taken into custody in Belgium, where he has been living for over 15 years.
Rev. Eric Dejaeger, 63, is on Interpol's list of wanted fugitives based on an arrest warrant issued by the Nunavut Court of Justice in 2002.
He is currently wanted on six charges — three counts of indecent assault on a male and three counts of buggery — related to alleged incidents between 1978 and 1982 in Igloolik, a remote Arctic community in what is now Nunavut.
A Canadian citizen, Dejaeger has been living freely in Belgium since 1995, after he had served prison time in Canada for sex crimes against children in Baker Lake, another Nunavut community.
Dejaeger was taken into custody this week because he has overstayed his legal residency in that country, an official from the Belgian Foreign Affairs Ministry told CBC News on Wednesday.
The official, who did not want to be named, said Dejaeger is currently in a detention centre for illegal residents.
The government official said Dejaeger will likely be expelled from Belgium, but he could not say when that could happen.
Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests