Both the girls were raped repeatedly but were scared to reveal the deeds of a ‘man of god.’

Already sentenced to 40 years Kerala pastor gets life until death in second child rape caseSanil K James
news Crime Friday, May 12, 2017 - 13:52

A serial child rapist in Kerala was sentenced to life imprisonment until death by a special court in Thrissur on Friday. Pastor Sanil K James, already serving a 40-year sentence for raping a minor girl, was convicted for a second time. Sanil was found guilty of raping a 13-year-old girl multiple times since 2013.

The Sessions court judge Nixon M Joseph, sentenced the 36-year-old pastor under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act.

Public Prosecutor Pious Mathew told TNM, "This sentence should be a deterrent to others, there should be no leniency. The man did this heinous crime on two girls, and misused his position. He should never be allowed to ever abuse a girl."

Sanil reportedly raped the minor thrice over the years. The first time was in 2013, after the Christmas Carols were sung at the Church. The second time was in 2014, where the pastor raped the minor at her residence. The third time was at his residence.

While he has been locked up for life now, Sanil is already in jail, serving a 40-year sentence for raping a 12-year-old multiple times, over a period of two months. The pastor was convicted in March 2016 in the first case.

He was given two 20-year sentences, to be served concurrently, one under Section 6 of the POCSO act and another under IPC 376(2)(f). He is currently lodged at the Viyyur central jail.

According to police officials, Sanil maintained a good relationship with the parents of both victims, which is how he got access to the children. Shockingly, both the minor victims are also from the same school.

Sanil, a pastor at the Salvation Army Church in Peechi, hails from Nedunkandam of Kottayam. The Salvation Army is a Christian denomination of the church which follows a quasi-military fashion.

The current case

As per a report, the pastor raped the minor girl several times between 2013 and 2016. The girl, who belongs to a scheduled caste community, had been too scared to inform anyone for months.

She finally opened up about the atrocities to her teacher, who was also a counselor in the school.

The first case

While handing out two life sentences to Sanil James in March 2016, Special Court Judge KP Sudheer had also ordered the pastor to pay Rs 3 lakh as compensation to the victim.

The child was first raped by the pastor in 2013 when the girl visited him along with her siblings in the church building after the Christmas carol. The pastor asked the other kids to watch TV while he took the girl to the adjacent room and raped her. The incident came in to light a year later in 2015 when the girl opened up about it in a counselling session at school.

A Sumesh, Ollur Circle Inspector told The News Minute that both the girls were hesitant to open up about the incident at home as they considered it a crime to speak about a priest, who is very close to god.

"This person maintained a good relationship with the parents of both the victims. He misused the relationship, to abuse the kids," the police officer said.

Sanil was staying with his wife and daughter at Peechi when these incidents happened.


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