Former Husi bishop, detained under the charge of rape and sexual abuse against former student

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Former bishop of Husi Corneliu Onila, also known as Bishop Corneliu Barladeanul, has been remanded for 24 hours by the prosecutors of Iasi Court of Appeal, under the charge of rape and sexual abuse against one of his former students from the Orthodox Theological Seminar in Husi where he used to be a professor.

The former archimandrite of the Episcopal Cathedral in Husi, Sebastian Jitaru has been also detained next to Onila, as he is also charged with multiple deeds of rape and sexual abuse against minors.

The scandal started in June 2017 at Husi Diocese when Corneliu Bârlădeanul, who was bishop of Husi, filed a complaint to the National Anti-corruption Directorate, saying that he was blackmailed by three priests who would have asked him for money or positions so that they would not disclose a footage featuring Barladeanul while having sexual intercourse with a man, allegedly one of his former students from the seminar, currently priest in a parish in Vaslui county.

Jitaru Sebastian Cristi, archimandrite priest at Husi Episcopal Cathedral, Damian Gheorghe, charity priest at the Vaslui County Hospital and Bumbu Răzvan Mihail, priest in Văleni village, were arrested on June 15, 2017, under the charge of blackmail. Subsequently, they were placed under home arrest and released under judicial control.

After that, Husi Diocese decided that three churchmen should be banned from serving as priests until there is a final ruling of the case in court. Shortly after, Moldavia Metropolitan Church asked Husi bishop Corneliu Barladeanul to stop officiating the Holy Mass and other religious services.

Bishop Barladeanul came back to his layman name, Corneliu Onila and withdrew from his position in August 2017, and he is currently at Varatec Monastery.

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