(BRAUNSCHWEIG, Germany) — A German Catholic priest admitted to 280 counts of sexual abuse on three boys in court on Thursday.
The BBC News reports that the priest, who was only identified as Andreas L, abused a nine-year-old boy for two years after he had befriended the boy’s widowed mother in 2004. The abuse is said to have occurred for two years when the boy would accompany the priest on weekend trips. The boy’s mother became suspicious of the relationship and approached the diocese of Hildesheim which forbade the priest to contact the boy. When he attempted to contact the victim, now aged 17, the teen revealed the abuse resulting in the arrest of the priest last summer.
Andreas L. began abusing two brothers aged nine and 13 shortly after he ceased contact with the first victim.
He appeared in Braunschweig court on Thursday and when questioned, the priest said he was under the impression that the children consented. If convicted, he faces a minimum prison sentence of six years.
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Ashley Fantz, AnneClaire Stapleton and Ed Payne, CNN Newswire
Eliott C. McLaughlin, Holly Yan and Euan McKirdy, CNN Newswire