American priest accused of molesting over 50 kids
A 77-year-old American priest who had been in the country since 1968 has been ordered arrested for sexually molesting more than 50 children, mostly altar boys.
Fr. Kenneth Pius Hendricks — who has been at the Bureau of Immigration (BI) detention facility in Taguig City since Dec. 5, 2018 — was served with five arrest warrants on Tuesday by members of the National Capital Region Police Office (NCRPO) Regional Special Operations Unit who were with NCRPO chief, Director Guillermo Eleazar.
The warrants were issued by Judge Constantino Esber of the Naval, Biliran Regional Trial Court Branch 16 for two counts of acts of lasciviousness and three counts of child abuse under Republic Act No. 7610, or the “Special Protection of Children Against Abuse, Exploitation and Discrimination Act.”
BI agents took Hendricks into custody last year after Judge Stephanie Bowman of the US Southern District Court of Ohio ordered his arrest for “engaging in illicit sex with a minor in a foreign country.”
Eleazar said that the suspect was believed to have molested at least 50 children in the Philippines. One of his alleged victims was a 12-year-old altar boy who claimed the priest had been sexually abusing him since he was aged 7.
The abuses reportedly happened inside Hendrick’s quarters in a chapel in Biliran.
The boy said he decided to come forward after Hendricks touched him again on Oct. 31 last year.
The alleged victim’s 22-year-old brother who also served in church accused the priest of sexually abusing him for years, even passing on to him a sexually transmitted disease in 2015.
The victims said they kept quiet about their ordeal after Hendricks built them a house, paid for their education and gave them a motorcycle.
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