Monday’s damning verdict by Larnaca District Court that former Kition Bishop Chrysostomos was guilty of sexually assaulting a teenage girl in a historic case dating back 42 years marked the high-ranking priest’s ‘descent’.
It was a verdict greeted with applause by all those in the packed courtroom – including the now 58-year-old complainant whose tears were running uncontrollably.
In addition to the verdict and the sentence to be pronounced on May 26, the Holy Synod is now expected to also take the step which is the 84-year-old former bishop’s dethronement.
Judge Evi Efthymiou rejected the defense’s argument that the accused did not receive a fair trial and that the case was investigated incompletely by the Police.
And she had used very sharp words to describe his attitude when he was put on the witness stand.
“The attitude of the accused was disappointing. He behaved arrogantly and sarcastically and was visibly tense,” the judge said.
The victim had pressed charges in 2021, 40 years after the alleged incident when she had visited the bishop seeking financial help after losing her father in 1981.
This is the second time Chrysostomos has appeared before a court on sexual assault charges.
However, the Larnaca Criminal Court acquitted him of rape in October 2021 after accusing the victim of making contradictory statements.