Authorities raid Catholic church offices
SAN JOSE (AP):
Judicial police in Costa Rica’s capital raided Roman Catholic church offices Thursday, searching for information about two priests accused of sexual abuse.
The raids on offices of the metropolitan curia and the national bishops’ conference were broadcast live on television, which showed officers from the judiciary’s investigation bureau taking documents and computers from two buildings in the centre of San Jose.
The prosecutor’s office said the police were seeking information about priests Mauricio Viquez and Manuel Guevara and looking for clues to any possible cover-up of sexual-abuse cases by San Jose Archbishop Jose Rafael Quiros.
An international arrest warrant has been issued against Viquez, who is accused of abusing two teenagers in 2003 and was expelled from the priesthood two weeks ago.
Viquez took a leave of absence from teaching at a local university last month, and immigration records indicate he left the country on January 7.
Guevara served at a parish just north of the capital. He has been detained and released but must report periodically with authorities.