Valley News

Actions

PD: Hindu priest accused of child molestation, some incidents occurring in Phoenix temple office

Posted: 2:55 PM, Aug 17, 2016
Updated: 2016-08-17 20:55:18Z

The Maricopa County Attorney's Office has charged a Hindu priest with child molestation after the victim recorded the man's confession. 

Court records show that the girl reported to police that she had been molested for four years after arriving in the United States from India in 2010.

Police say the victim came forward on August 6 after recording a confrontation with her alleged assailant, 59-year-old Ghanshayam Ratilal Joshi. 

After a friend encouraged her to contact police, she recorded a conversation where Joshi reportedly admitted to "spoiling her virginity" when she was a pre-teen. The victim said she felt she needed proof, since Joshi has been a priest at the Hindu temple near 28th and Maryland avenues for 20 years.

Records state the victim relayed to police that Joshi molested her several times, mostly in his office at the temple. She told police that Joshi told her this was normal, and "that various gods and saints had sex with female children."

Police say Joshi also threatened to kill her if she said anything. 

After his arrest, Joshi requested an attorney and did not talk to police.

Joshi is being held without bond, and has been charged with child molestation, sexual conduct with a minor, and sexual abuse.