Police on Tuesday arrested a Catholic priest on charges of sexually abusing two boys in a church-run institution in Wayanad district. Fr Saji Joseph, 40, was produced in a POCSO court at Kalpetta in Wayanad and remanded in judicial custody for two weeks. Fr Joseph hails from Kozhikode and belongs to the Kochi-based Catholic congregation Vincentian Fathers.
According to the police, the priest repeatedly abused the two destitute boys at Vincentian Bala Nagar near Kalpetta for a year, starting March 2016. Fr Joseph was the administrator of Bala Nagar. “Bala Nagar was closed down recently for lack of enough children. The two boys were sent back home. Relatives noticed behavioural changes in one of the boys. After counselling, the boy revealed the traumatic experience.” a police source said.
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