Church Leaders Sex Scandals Show Increasing Trend

According to a press report, another religious leader in Jamaica has been charged with running afoul of the law.

The report noted that Shawn Lawrence, a businessman, and operator of a downtown Kingston funeral home, was charged with buggery and indecent assault following an investigation by CISOCA detectives.

Lawrence has become the latest religious leader in Jamaica to be apprehended following allegations of sexual assault against a minor.

A few weeks ago, a Seventh Day Adventist Elder, 41-year-old Narry Hudson was arrested and charged for allegedly engaging in sexual activities with a 14-year-old girl.

In January of this year, a 55-year-old pastor of a Pentecostal Church in Kingston, Paul Hanniford was convicted in the Home Circuit Court for having sexual intercourse with a 13-year-old girl.

In another case, 64 -year-old Moravian pastor Rupert Clarke was charged with rape after he was caught with a 15-year-old girl in St. Elizabeth.

Coming on the heels of those developments, the former president of the Moravian church, Dr. Paul Gardner, was charged with carnal abuse in another case involving a minor.

Gardner as well as Jermaine Gibson, who was vice president of the church, were slapped with the charges following investigations by detectives from the Centre for Sexual Offences and Child Abuse (CISOCA).

Nigel Belle, Readers Bureau, Fellow

Edited by Jesus Chan

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