Lawsuit settlement terms - No ministry, no access to youth for Jeyapaul in India
By Jess Bengtson
October 4, 2016
A settlement for the first-ever nuisance lawsuit against an overseas Diocese was announced Monday in a St. Paul press conference which involved sexual abuse survivor Megan Peterson, who was abused as a minor by Father Joseph Jeyapaul when he worked in the Diocese of Crookston in 2005.
In 2015, after his extradition from India, Jeyapaul pleaded guilty to criminal sexual conduct involving a minor in Minnesota. On January 16, 2016, with the permission of Pope Francis, Bishop Amalraj of India lifted the suspension of Jeyapaul and allowed him to return to ministry. Megan Peterson filed a federal lawsuit on April 18, 2016 alleging nuisance against the Diocese of Ootacamund for returning Jeyapaul to active ministry and exposing innocent children in India to Jeyapaul’s predatory ways, said a release from Jeff Anderson and Associates of St. Paul.
During Monday’s press conference, which included Barbara Blaine and Peter Isley of S.N.A.P. (Survivors Network of those Abused by Priests), Megan and Jeff Anderson announced that the Diocese in India agreed that Jeyapaul will not be allowed to return to any kind of ministry, to not have access to any youth or young persons in India and that Jeyapaul’s faculties to minister will be taken away. They have also agreed to provide Peterson with status updates on Jeyapaul every year like where he is living and what he is doing, and will continue to provide these updates until they have no power over him.
“Because of Megan’s voice and courage this unprecedented outcome has been achieved,” said Anderson. “She has brought this case not just to Minnesota and not just to the Diocese in India, but across that nation and to the Vatican.”