PITTSBURGH – Jury selection is set to begin in the federal court trial of a Pennsylvania Catholic priest charged with traveling to Honduras to have sex with poor street children during missionary trips.
The Rev. Joseph Maurizio Jr. has been jailed since last fall when federal prosecutors in Johnstown accused him of molesting one boy and possessing child pornography. A new indictment in April added charges involving two other boys and that the suspended Somerset County priest illegally sent $8,000 to a charity to help facilitate the trips which ended in 2009.
Jury selection is scheduled to start Tuesday.
The 70-year-old priest has denied the allegations and has continued to be supported by some members of Our Lady Queen of Angels, where he pastored before being placed on leave after the charges.