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Former Philly Priest Accused Of Abuse

Apr 30, 2003 | AP

The Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia is seeking to temporarily remove a priest accused of sexual abuse from ministry in the mountains of Peru. He has been working there with homeless children since the early 1990s.

The Reverend Michael Donofrio is accused in a civil lawsuit filed Monday in Philadelphia of abusing a 12-year-old boy several times two decades ago while in ministry at Saint Thomas Aquinas Church in South Philadelphia.

Archdiocese spokeswoman Catherine Rossi says the church has "requested that the Diocese of Abancay, Peru, release Father Donofrio from his current ministry pending an investigation."

Rossi says it is the first complaint the archdiocese has received about Donofrio.

Efforts by The Philadelphia Inquirer to reach Donofrio by telephone and e-mail have been unsuccessful. A message left at his parents' Montgomery County house has not been returned.

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