One of Greece’s best-known and most respected children’s charities is under investigation for sexual and physical abuse of a minor in at least one of its institutions.
The Children’s Charity is a non-governmental organization that has helped thousands of Greek and migrant children since it was founded by a priest about ten years ago. The investigation follows a request from the Greek Ombudsman after the 19-year-old victim approached an independent body. The Ombudsman referred the complaint to the prosecutor’s office. According to media reports, the victim was 16.5 years old when he was repeatedly abused by a charity worker at a shelter in Athens.
Citing sources, mass media report that the charity has been accused of engaging in abusive behavior towards its beneficiaries. Earlier Thursday, Deputy Social Solidarity Minister Domna Mihailidou told Mega TV they were informed of the complaint on Wednesday evening. The problems seem to be taking the form of an “avalanche” as the media report that the police are investigating at least three cases of similar complaints and, in addition, reports of physical or other forms of violence. According to police press releaseunder investigation are six objects of the charitable organization in Athens and other parts of the country.
AT statement The charity said on Thursday evening that it was “surprised” by the developments and “unaware of the incidents,” noting that it has not received formal notice so far. She assured of full cooperation with the authorities. Meanwhile, the prosecutor is also investigating the leaked testimony of the victim to the media.
In the same time Ministry of Labor “froze” the planned transfer of the building to the children’s charity and excluded the relevant law from the bill, which at one time had to pass through parliament.