Jalandhar, India, Apr 9, 2019 / 16:04 pm America/Denver (CNA).
Bishop Franco Mulakkal of Jullundur, India has been charged with raping a nun nine times over a two-year period and faces a maximum sentence of life imprisonment, local authorities announced today.
The charge sheet against Mulakkal included statements from more than 80 witnesses including a cardinal, three bishops, 11 priests and 25 nuns, according to Indian Catholic group Save our Sisters.
Mulakkal has also been charged under laws against intimidation, illegal confinement and unnatural intercourse, the New York Times reports, and he faces at least 10 years in prison if found guilty.
In June 2018, a member of the Missionaries of Jesus religious congregation accused Mulukkal of sexually assaulting her 13 times between 2014 and 2016. In a 72-page complaint to police, filed June 29, the nun alleged that the bishop sexually abused her more than a dozen times over two years.
Police in the Indian state of Kerala had announced yesterday that they had gathered enough evidence to formally charge Mulakkal and that they would file a charging document in criminal court this week.