The Kerala High Court on Wednesday rejected the anticipatory bail applications of three priests of Malankara Orthodox Syrian Church accused in a rape case, observing that they acted as “predators” and took “undue advantage” of the victim.
The Kerala Police Crime Branch had last week registered a case against four priests — Abraham Varghese, Job Mathew, Jaise K George and Johnson V Mathew — following allegations that they had sexually abused and blackmailed a married woman for several years. Except priest Johnson V Mathew, the three other accused had approached the court after the case was lodged.
Rejecting the bail, Justice Raja Vijayaraghavan said the applicants “had acted as predators and…taken undue advantage of the position of the survivor to their advantage. It appears that the survivor has been systematically abused by the accused.” The HC asked the accused to surrender.