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Russian priest sentenced to 14 years in prison over child molesting

January 17, 10:48 UTC+3

In 2011, priest Gleb Grozovsky, who was a priest at the Ascension Cathedral near St. Petersburg, sexually abused an underage girl

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Gleb Grozovsky

Gleb Grozovsky

© Alexander Demianchuk/TASS

ST. PETERSBURG, January 17. /TASS/. The Priozersky City Court in Russia’s Leningrad region has sentenced priest Gleb Grozovsky to 14 years in a high-security penal colony for molesting children in camps organized by the Russian Orthodox Church in Russia and Greece, a TASS correspondent reported from the courtroom.

"Gleb Grozovsky has been found guilty and sentenced to 14 years in prison," Judge Lyudmila Yashgina said, announcing the court’s decision.

"I understand the sentence and will file an appeal. This is not the end, you will see the situation change," Grozovsky said.

The prosecutor’s office had requested the court to sentence the priest to 15 years in a high-security penal colony and deprive him of the right to engage in activities related to the upbringing of children.

Grozovsky did not plead guilty and rejected all the charges as absurd.

Grozovsky case

According to investigators, in 2011, Grozovsky, who was a priest at the Ascension Cathedral in Tsarskoye Selo near St. Petersburg, sexually abused an underage girl. In the summer of 2013, he conducted similar actions towards two girls at an Orthodox child camp in Greece.

After an investigation was launched, the priest fled abroad and was put on the international wanted list. In 2016 Grozovsky was brought to St. Petersburg from Israel.

Sources in the Russian Orthodox Church said earlier that a decision on defrocking Grozovsky would be made after the court announced its verdict.

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