The case of Father Tomasz F., a former resident of one of the parishes in Opole Lubelskie, who was convicted in April for molesting two boys and possession of child pornography, is to be heard once again. The appellate court stated that already in the first instance the case should be examined by the regional court, not the district court.
According to the indictment, Father Tomasz F. allegedly sexually abused two boys under the age of 15. With one of them, the priest was to have had sexual intercourse and other sexual activities at least several times in the period from the summer of 2018 to July 2019. In the case of the second, the charge concerned a single sexual intercourse and other sexual activity in July 2019.
The trial took place behind closed doors. In April, the District Court in Opole Lubelskie sentenced the priest to 10 years’ imprisonment, finding him guilty. Not only harassment, but possession of pornographic content involving minors in the form of 371 multimedia files. By the court’s decision, he was to be served in a therapeutic system. This means that the punishment is to be performed in a therapeutic ward with a specific specialization.
The defense and the prosecutor’s office appealed against the first-instance decision
After serving his sentence, the clergyman was to be placed in “an appropriate psychiatric institution”. The court also obliged the clergyman to pay the injured parties a compensation of PLN 50,000. and 30 thousand zloty. Moreover, it prohibited him from pursuing professions and activities related to the upbringing, education, treatment or care of minors, from contacting the aggrieved parties for 15 years and from approaching them at less than 100 meters.
The defense and the prosecutor’s office appealed against this decision. On Tuesday (September 28), the Lublin District Court quashed the sentence and sent it for re-examination.
The district court should hear the case already in the first instance
– The appellate court, while examining the appeal, came to the conclusion that due to the nature of the acts alleged against the accused, the case should be examined by the district court as the court of first instance – explained the spokeswoman for the District Court in Lublin, judge Barbara Markowska.
The oral motives of Tuesday’s judgment are not public. The court decided to exclude the public from the hearing due to “important private interests of the minor aggrieved parties”.
Father Tomasz F. was a resident of one of the parishes in Opole Lubelskie.
Main photo source: TVN24