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Catholic Priest Arrested In New Jersey For Allegedly Having Inappropriate Sexual Contact With A Minor

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OCEAN COUNTY, NJ (CBS) – The Ocean County Prosecutor confirmed the arrest of a Catholic priest who worked in Brick Township on Tuesday afternoon.

Marukudiyil C. Velan, who goes by “Father Chris,” was arrested on allegations of inappropriate sexual contact with a Brick Township woman and her child. Father Chris, 64, had worked at Visitation Roman Catholic Church in Brick since 2001 as a visiting priest.

On Saturday, July 14th, the Brick Township Police Department interviewed the woman and her children in connection with a complaint about the priest. An investigation determined that the family belonged to the parish and that Father Chris had visited their residence in Brick. While there, the priest allegedly had inappropriate contact with the mother and her child.

Father Chris is charged with one count of Criminal Sexual Contact as to the adult victim; one count of criminal sexual contact and one count of Endangering the Welfare of a Child as to the minor victim.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is encouraged to contact Detective Anthony Paciulli of the Ocean County Prosecutor’s Office, 732-929-2027, or Captain John Rein of the Brick Township Police Department, 732-262-2135.

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