Top Vatican, Dominican prosecutors mull bishop’s pedophilia case
Santo Domingo.- Dominican Republic Justice minister Francisco Dominguez met Tuesday morning with Vatican Justice promoter Jean Pierre Milano and with Vatican secretary of State Angelo Beccius, as part of the proceedings against former Papal envoy Josef Wesolowski, charged with sexually molesting Dominican boys.
"At these meetings we analyzed both countries’ laws to determine the legal powers of Dominican authorities and the reach of the Vatican’s jurisdiction, which has already made the summary and have taken precautionary measures such as the ratification and implementation of the reach of house arrest,” Dominguez said.
The official said in his role as prosecutor he represents the entire Dominican society. “We expressed our interest in seeking the truth; It’s a very serious, sensitive case, not only the crime but also because of the actors involved, so we want and expect that the entire process is handled within the framework of respect, but especially in a context where justice prevails."
Dominguez, speaking with Dominican and international media, reiterated Dominican Republic’s adherence to the Vienna Convention, which states that diplomatic personnel facing a judicial process must be tried in the country they represent, so in this case it’s the Vatican’s jurisdiction.
"We as Dominican authorities conducted a preliminary investigation practicing interviews and evidence-gathering, where we observed facts which are of a character of wrongdoing, and all this documentation was duly sent to the Vatican authorities, we understand nonetheless that it’s the responsibility of the designated judges to determine the degree of guilt or not, and whether to send the case to a criminal trial," Dominguez said.
“Every case of abuse against a minor should generate a sanction; impunity is a stimulus, they are grave types of crime which sever the most intimate and vulnerable fibers of the children, for which there shouldn’t be the least minute gap of impunity and we’re confident this case will be thusly.”