Kerala priest accused of child abuse surrenders

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He went absconding in April this year following a complaint filed by a 14-year-old girl's parent.

Kochi: UCAN A catholic priest in Kerala, who was on the run for nearly eight moths after police booked him for raping a minor girl, surrendered before the police on Tuesday.

Father Edwin Figarez, 41, surrendered before the Aluva police. He was arrested and handed over for interrogation.
He went absconding in April this year following a complaint filed by a 14-year-old girl's parent. 

According to the complaint filed by the victim girl's mother, the priest raped her daughter several times between January and March 28 this year.

Figarez was the parish priest of Lourdes Matha Church, Puthenvelikkara in Ernakulam when he allegedly raped the girl. 

Police officer T. M. Varghese said that the priest had been shifting locations in order to avoid arrest. He had fled to Dubai on April 2, a day after the complaint was lodged. Later, he returned to India and remained elusive, said the police. 

A look-out notice was issued against the priest. Meantime, he moved Kerala High court for anticipatory bail through his counsel. However, the bail was denied and he remained absconding. 

A case was registered against Figarez under Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (Pocso) Act, 2012.

Source: Times of India

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