Catholic priest faces extradition over ‘sexual abuse’ allegations

If convicted, he may have to spend 30 years in prison with fine.


A Catholic priest allegedly involved in child abuse cases may be extradited to the US as his bail pleas was rejected last week.

Father Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul was serving as an extern priest at a Minnesota church in 2004 when he was allegedly accused of sexual abuse.

If convicted, he may have to spend 30 years in prison with fine.

Based on a warrant issued by the Additional Chief Metropolitan Magistrate, Patiala House Courts, Father Jeyapaul was arrested from Erode district on March 16, 2012 and has been lodged in Tihar Jail.

As his bail pleas were rejected by courts concerned, his sister P Pushpavathy approached the Madras High Court with a habeas corpus petition, claiming there was a delay in his production in the Delhi court and adding that his continued incarceration amounted to illegal detention.

Hearing the plea to quash his arrest, the Bench comprising Justices V Dhanapalan and C T Selvam noted that the Ministry of External Affairs had presented documents such as diplomatic note seeking the extradition sent by the US embassy in New Delhi; certificate of authentication signed by the Indian embassy in Washington; certificate of the US secretary of state and the attorney general; affidavits by the victim, investigator and the prosecutor; and copy of the extradition treaty signed between the two countries.

After receiving the note from the US officials in 2011, the MEA had approached the additional CMM, Patiala House Courts, to inquire the request and decide on its ‘extraditability’ based on the nature of offences. As the arrest was made based on the magistrate’s warrant, it could not be termed detention or illegal detention as charged by Jeyapaul’s sister, said Justice Dhanapalan.

With this, Father Jeyapaul seems to have exhausted his legal options to fight extradition to the US for alleged offences done nearly a decade ago.

Incardinated to the Catholic Diocese of Ootacamund, Jeyapaul was ordained as a priest in May 1982. He was chosen to serve as an extern priest under the Diocese of Crookston, Minnesota, US.

Fr Jeyapaul left for Minnesota in August 2004, and first served as a parochial vicar before being appointed as the administrator of the Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in Greenbush, St Joseph Church in Middle River and St Edward in Karlstad.

Source: Indian Express

Priest , Sex Charge , Delhi Court , Extradition , Father Joseph Palanivel Jeyapaul  
Map of extradition treaties by country

Map of extradition treaties by country (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


  1. July 20, 2013 at 1:02 am

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