Brazilian priest sentenced for abusing eight minors

/ 11:22 PM November 09, 2011

SAO PAULO—A 77-year-old priest in Brazil’s Sao Paulo state has been sentenced to 60 years in jail for raping eight of his altar boys, according to a defense lawyer.

Father Jose Afonso De had been charged of sexually abusing the eight boys aged between 12 and 16, including some who were preparing for the priesthood.


The sexual abuse occurred in the town of Franca, located 400 kilometers (240 miles) from here in 2010, 2009 and 2001 as well as in a seminary in Capinopolis in the southeastern state of Minas Gerais.

The priest denies the charges.


“Unfortunately, I can’t give details for legal reasons. But there was a sentence and we are appealing,” lawyer Eduardo Caleiro Palma told the daily Comercio de Franca Tuesday.

A spokesman for the Sao Paulo state court said he could not confirm the case as it was subject to legal professional privilege.

The priest has been relieved of his duties since the start of the investigation triggered by an anonymous denunciation in March last year.

The teenagers told police that the priest had invited them to his home supposedly to study the Bible but once there were forced to kiss and touch his genitals.

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TAGS: Brazil, Crime, Religion, sex
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