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After the suicide of a former priest, there are “responsibilities” to be established, says the Archbishop of Strasbourg


“It is clear that (…) it nevertheless remains to establish certain penal responsibilities at the level of French justice as well as at the level of

The Archbishop of Strasbourg, Mgr Luc Ravel, expressed on Sunday his "astonishment" and "questions" around the case of a former priest, sentenced in 2013, who, according to the local press, committed suicide there. a week and was allegedly suspected of raping a minor when he was still a member of the Church.

“I cannot silence my astonishment and a certain number of questions”, in particular on the “criminal and moral responsibilities of the Institution in the knowledge and the treatment of (this) file”, writes the Archbishop of Strasbourg in a press release in reaction to an article published on Sunday in the Latest News from Alsace (DNA).

On the evening of January 1, two people were fatally hit by a TER in the Bas-Rhin.

The Strasbourg prosecutor's office said on Monday that it was probably a man and his mother who voluntarily ended their lives.

According to the DNA, the 50-year-old man was a former priest, dismissed from the clerical state after his conviction in 2013 in Colmar for possession and dissemination of child pornography images.

A "sudden mutation" after a possible rape

According to the regional newspaper, he was recently targeted by a complaint for rape of a minor concerning facts dating back to 2008 when he was chaplain in a private college in Strasbourg.

However in 2009, this man had had a "sudden transfer" and was appointed "priest-dean" in an Alsatian parish, notes Archbishop Ravel, who became Archbishop of Strasbourg in 2017 and who has never met the man concerned.

For her part, considering that the information published "hindered the investigation that (she) has been conducting for several months, of which no complaint is at the origin", the prosecutor of the Republic of Strasbourg, Yolande Renzi, has indicated that it did not wish to communicate further on this file.

She nevertheless specified that from a legal point of view, the public action was extinguished "against a deceased person, but not with regard to other possible co-authors or accomplices".

“It is clear that (…) it nevertheless remains to establish certain penal responsibilities at the level of French justice as well as at the level of Church justice,” continued Bishop Ravel.

An archdiocese already shaken in November

In November, the Archdiocese of Strasbourg was already shaken when its former Archbishop (2007-2017) Mgr Jean-Pierre Grallet admitted having made "inappropriate gestures" towards "a young adult woman" in the 1980s. Facts " of a sexual nature” reported to the courts in January 2022 by Bishop Ravel, for which a criminal investigation has been opened.

Source: leparis

All tech articles on 2023-01-08

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