Priest Who Had Sex with Boys Vanishes from Public Eye
By Brooks Egerton
Dallas Morning News
September 25, 2012
|Monsignor Cristobal Garcia led Black Saturday celebrations in the Philippines before claiming that an altar boy “not only seduced me, he also raped me.” (File 2005/Staff photo)|
An internationally prominent Catholic priest has dropped out of sight in the Philippines, years after admitting to me that he had sex with altar boys in the U.S. and supplied them with drugs.
Monsignor Cristobal Garcia’s sudden low profile coincides with a new National Geographic article on the ivory trade. It calls Garcia “one of the best known ivory collectors in the Philippines” and quotes him as giving advice on how to smuggle ivory into the U.S., in defiance of a 1989 global trade ban.
The magazine refers to my 2005 investigative piece on the priest, who had fled the U.S. after an altar boy was found in his bedroom. He’s one of over 200 Catholic clergymen we found who crossed international borders to escape justice and stay in ministry.
Filipino church leaders helped Garcia reinvent himself as an authority on worship practices and leader of boys at a rural religious compound. Now he’s said to be resting and receiving treatment for hypertension, according to today’s Cebu Daily News.
Garcia’s archbishop told that Filipino paper he plans to address the ivory smuggling controversy at a news conference soon. The paper made no mention of sexual abuse.