Catholic Fr Kizito in new sexual abuse probe

May 26, 2011 12:00 am

, NAIROBI, Kenya, May 26 – Renowned Catholic priest Father Renato Kizito was arrested on Thursday over fresh charges of sexual abuse following accusations by his 26-year-old male secretary.

The man told police that the sexual attack occurred on Tuesday night within Riruta area of Dagoretti, in the outskirts of the capital Nairobi.

"A 26-year-old man who works as Fr Kizito\’s secretary lodged a complaint that he had been sodomised by this particular priest and we are acting on it," Kilimani Divisional police chief Bernard Muli told journalists at the station where the priest was questioned on Thursday.

Police had earlier gone to a house where the priest was said to be staying, but they did not get him. He, however, presented himself at the Kilimani police station when he learnt that he was being sought.

"The priest has recorded a statement and we have now taken him to hospital for forensic tests.  We want to get samples from him so that a DNA examination can commence," Mr Muli said, adding: "Samples have already been taken from the man who alleges he was sodomised and doctors have proved that he was indeed assaulted. What is remaining is to know whether indeed it is Fr Kizito who sodomised him."

Fr Kizito, 49, an Italian priest of the Comboni Missionaries who was detained at the station from 8am was whisked out and bundled into a police car which sped off to an undisclosed hospital, trailed by another saloon car with five heavily armed police officers.

The priest who appeared shocked did not speak to journalists and when Capital News asked him why he was at the station, he only replied "I don\’t know."

It is the second time the priest is being implicated in a sexual abuse case in the last two years.

In 2009, the Catholic priest was accused of sexually molesting young boys under his care but he denied the reports and instead termed them as a "case of blackmail, defamation and extortion."

The renowned priest, who has worked in Kenya for over 20 years, offering charity work, dismissed a news item that had been aired by independent local television, KTN, showing a video footage of him with the boys.

After investigations, detectives at the CID concluded that evidence linking him to the alleged charges was tampered with and subsequently concluded the investigations.

Soon after police dropped the investigations on him, Fr Kizito placed paid up advertisements on local newspapers, where he claimed that those who accused him at the time had been manipulated to do so.

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