The Philippines is an odd place at the moment. Duterte is invoking his wrath upon criminals. I wonder if this will include Catholic priests and their not uncommon predilection for things they shouldn’t desire.
This is from The Independent:
A 55-year-old priest and head of a Catholic school has been stripped of his posts after he was caught driving a 13-year-old girl to a motel.
Arnel Fuentes Lagarejos, former parish priest of St John The Baptist Parish and president of Cainta Catholic College, has been accused of child abuse near Marikina City in the Philippines.
The priest allegedly arranged via social media to meet the girl and a pimp outside a shopping mall, where he reportedly paid around 500 Philippine Pesos (£7.49) to take the girl.
He faces charges for violating the Anti-Trafficking in Persons Act and an investigation is underway after he was discovered as part of a police entrapment mission.
The entrapment was allegedly called for by the girl’s mother, after the girl opened up to social workers about the abuse and who then informed her mother.
The department accessed her social media accounts to find out who was selling her to men. The pimp was a friend of the girl, aged 16, as reported by Rappler.
The 13-year-old victim said the motel would have been her third meeting with the priest, and she accused him of pointing a gun at her and warning her not to meet other men.
Typically, the Archbishop Emeritus Oscar Cruz of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines said “But it does not mean he is guilty before proven innocent. He is innocent until proven guilty.”
Ever the defenders.