Sexual abuse: Indian priest arrested in Canada

Father Toby Devasia

Ottawa, May 13, 2019: The Canada police have arrested an Indian priest for alleged inappropriate behavior with a woman.

The priest has been identified as Father Toby Devasia, vicar of St Mary’s Syro Malabar Church at King Edward Avenue, London in Canada. The arrest took place on May 9.

London police said the woman had gone to the church and spoke to Father Devasia “for some time.” When she was leaving, she said she was touched inappropriately by the 33-year-old priest.

The police describe the woman as “elderly” and would not comment on the details of the allegation.

Reports say that police arrested the priest from his residence. Father Devasia was ordained a priest five years ago.

His first court appearance is slated for June 24.

He was charged following an investigation into the sexual assault report on May 6.

The church’s Facebook page shows Father Devasia celebrating his fifth year in the priesthood earlier this year.

One of his parishioners, Pious Joseph, who is a London real estate agent, confirmed Father Devasia is the priest at the church.

Joseph said the priest has been at the church since last year and the community has been “happy” with him as their leader.

“He’s always in church because he’s a priest.”

Joseph said he was with Father Devasia when the priest was handcuffed and arrested at his apartment.

The London’s church’s Facebook page says it was the first Syro-Malabar Catholic church in Canada.


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