Polish Archbishop Jozef Wesolowski will not be extradited back to Poland for molestation allegations brought during his tenure as papal nuncio in the Dominican Republic, according to the Vatican.
Wesolowski, 65, was recalled to the Vatican in August 2013 after it was discovered that he was molesting Dominican boys. Since the archbishop is a citizen of the Vatican, he is immune from extradition back to Poland.
“Archbishop Wesolowski is a citizen of the Vatican, and Vatican law does not allow for his extradition,” read a statement from Holy See.
Wesolowski’s exact whereabouts are unknown, although it is believed he is living in Rome or the Vatican.
The District Prosecutor’s office in Warsaw told the thenews.pl that it is conducting its own investigation separate from the Vatican’s. Another Polish priest, Father Wojciech Gil, is facing similar allegations after child pornography was found on his computer.
The Vatican claims to be cooperating with the investigation and denies hiding Wesolowski, according to Vatican spokesman Rev. Federico Lombardi. The Associated Press reported that the Polish government was investigating Wesolowski’s legal status, but that the Vatican would be trying the archbishop for canonical crimes and violation of the Vatican’s criminal code, which could lead to defrocking and jail time.
The Latin Post reported that Dominican Republic prosecutors found Wesołowski guilty of sexually abusing at least five boys, all under the age of 15. A journalist uncovered the offenses and reported them to a Santo Domingo TV station. Further investigations revealed that the archbishop solicited sex in public areas, and may have abused cocaine and had sexual relations with a deacon.
He had served in the Dominican Republic for six years before the abuse came to light.