Priest, female devotee arrested for raping student for two years
Ulhasnagar: Vithalwadi police on Tuesday arrested a 40-year-old Sharon Fellowship Church priest and a 25-year-old female devotee for allegedly raping a Class X student for two years. Another devotee alerted the victim’s mother that there was something amiss with the priest who had tried to touch her inappropriately and was suspected to have sexually assaulted her daughter.
On receiving a text message, the 15-year-old victim’s mother took her daughter into confidence and checked the information. “My daughter broke down and revealed the ordeal that she had been facing for two years. She said the priest had threatened her and used to get physical with her after his accomplice, a devotee too, used to blackmail her and take her to his house, where both sexually assaulted my daughter,” the victim’s mother stated in her complaint.
Ateam led by senior inspector S J Shirsat and inspector Nandlal Khadkikar carried out a probe and arrested Geet Kumar Somnath Pillai alias Manikuttan alias Shreejit and Rosy (name changed), who served as a priest at the church in Vithalwadi. Police will record the statement of the woman who alerted the victim’s mother too.
The minor has been visi- ting the church for three years along with her family to offer prayers. “She had met Rosy, who introduced her to Pillai, in February 2015. They got close and finally she took her to the accused’s house, where the priest and devotee raped and committed unnatural sex with her,” said a police officer.
The duo has been booked under Indian Penal Code (IPC) sections 323 (hurt), 376 (rape), 377 (unnatural offences) and 506 (criminal intimidation). They were also booked under Prevention of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act sections 4 (penetrative sexual assault), 6 (aggravated penetrative sexual assault), 8 (sexual harassment) and 17 (abettment). They will be produced before a local court on Wednesday.