Kerala Court acquits Bishop Franco Mulakkal in 2018 nun rape case

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New Delhi: Bishop Franco Mulakkal was acquitted by the Kottayam Additional District Court in its verdict on Friday in the 2018 nun rape case. He was acquitted of all charges after a trial that lasted more than 100 days.

As the prosecution failed to produce evidence against the accused, the Additional District and Sessions Court II acquitted Bishop.

In 2018, a nun publicly complained against the priest and made allegations of rape against him. The nun had alleged that Mulakkal raped her several times between 2014 and 2016 at her congregation’s mission house in Kottayam district.

The nun’s complaint shook the entire Kerala as several other nuns came out in her support and protested demanding the arrest of Bishop Franco Mulakkal.

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A case of rape was registered against Bishop by the police in Kottayam district in June 2018. The Special Investigation Team probing the case arrested Bishop in September 2018 and charged him with wrongful confinement, rape, unnatural sex and criminal intimidation.

Mulakkal, arrested in September 2018, was remanded in judicial custody for 25 days.

The nun had earlier filed her complaint about sexual abuse and rape at the church in June 2017, but no action was taken.

He was the first Indian Catholic bishop to be arrested in a rape case.

Franco Mulakkal was the bishop of Jalandhar but was removed from administrative charge after the scandal broke out in 2018.