Child abuse: Christian priest wanted by Interpol arrested

A Christian priest wanted by Interpol for his alleged involvement in a child abuse case registered in the US has been arrested near here, police said on Saturday.

Rev Jeyapaul alias Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul, 57, served as a priest in a church in Udhagamandalam before 2004 when he left for a church in Thief River Falls and then to Greenbush in Minnesota in the United States where he was entrusted to take care of children, police sources said.

In 2004, he was charged with allegedly molesting a 14-year old girl at his church under the diocese of Crookston, Minnesota.

Though a suit in this regard was registered in the Roseau County Court in US, Jeyapaul returned to India in 2005.

After the case was handed over to it by the US police, the Interpol obtained an arrest warrant against the priest and informed Tamil Nadu Police to trace and arrest him.

A police team led by Erode Superintendent of Police S. Panneerselvam traced Jeyapaul, presently serving as an assistant to a priest in a church at Simmittihalli in Thalawady area, and arrested him on Friday evening.

Jeyapaul was on Friday produced in the Erode Judicial Magistrate Court which ordered that he should be handed over to Interpol officials in Delhi.

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