Jalandhar, India, Nov 7, 2018 / 14:00 pm
The Diocese of Jalandhar will not pay for the criminal defense of its bishop, who is accused of serially raping a religious sister.
Bishop Agnelo Gracias, who was appointed Sept. 20 by Pope Francis as interim leader of the Indian diocese, told reporters Nov. 6 that Bishop Franco Mulakkal's brother has been paying for the bishop's legal expenses.
"His family back home is quite well off. So, no request has come to us from his side," Gracias said Nov. 6, adding that the diocese would consider providing financial support to Mulakkal's accuser if she requested it.
Mulakkal, who remains head of the Diocese of Jalandhar but was sidelined by the appointment of Gracias, was arrested Sept. 21. He is suspected of having raped a member of the Missionaries of Jesus more than a dozen times during a two year period that began May 5, 2014.