and Bishop Accountability UPDATED regularly at bottom
By FOX 12 Staff
SHERWOOD, OR (KPTV) -
Police say a receipt and shipping information linking a Sherwood priest to a hidden bathroom camera, is what prompted them to issue a warrant for his arrest Tuesday.
Investigators say a security company in Dallas, Texas is to thank for essentially breaking the case wide open.
Sherwood police say they were suspicious of Priest Ysrael Bien for months, but did not have enough evidence to arrest him, for hiding that camera in a church bathroom.
By Emily E. Smith | The Oregonian/OregonLive
on August 19, 2015
The Archdiocese of Portland learned that one of its priests had left the country this summer during an investigation into a hidden camera found at his church. The archbishop says he tried to convince the priest to return, but he refused.
Church leaders discovered on July 29 that the Rev. Ysrael Bien was in The Philippines, an archdiocese spokesman said. But they don't know whether the priest, who is now wanted on misdemeanor charges, plans to return.
Acting on new information that linked Bien, 34, to the spy camera, Sherwood police were ready to arrest him on Tuesday.
August 19, 2015
Of the Catholic Sentinel
SHERWOOD — Police now say Father Ysrael Bien, on administrative leave from his role as pastor of St. Francis Parish in Sherwood, purchased a spy camera later found in a church bathroom.
Records uncovered by the Oregonian newspaper show the 34-year-old priest logged onto a spy gear website in March to buy the $295 camera, which was disguised as an electrical outlet. A Washington County judge on Tuesday issued an arrest warrant for Father Bien on charges of invasion of privacy, tampering with evidence and initiating a false report — all misdemeanors.
“It is gravely troubling to find out that one of our priests has been charged with criminal misconduct, but we appreciate the diligence of the Sherwood Police Department in pursuing its investigation of the incident,” says Archbishop Alexander Sample. “We will continue to cooperate with authorities in the resolution of this matter. Our prayers are with parishioners of Saint Francis Church, Sherwood, and all who have been affected.”
Meanwhile, Father Bien has left the country to visit family in The Philippines.
on August 27, 2015
Police and church leaders have neither seen nor heard from the Rev. Ysrael Bien since a judge signed a warrant for his arrest last week.
The reality that the priest may not return from the Philippines leaves the criminal investigation unfinished and his Sherwood congregation without a chance to face the man they once admired.
"I don't ever expect to see him again, but I think in his heart of hearts he knows how many people he's hurt," said parishioner Peter Hainley. "Owning it would be a really good step toward helping people heal."
Bien was the beloved pastor of St. Francis Catholic Church. He was trusted, even
Oregon priest runs off to Philippines during criminal investigation into hidden camera found in church bathroom
New York Daily News
BY NICOLE HENSLEY
A priest caught with a hidden camera in a Sherwood, Ore., church fled to the Philippines to evade an arrest warrant signed last week, local reports said.
Rev. Ysrael Bien left the country in defiance of the Archdiocese of Portland’s orders to stay put while on administrative leave from the St. Francis Catholic Church.
“I didn’t expect him to disobey,” Archbishop Alexander Sample told the Oregonian.
A teenage boy had found a hidden camera disguised as an electrical outlet in a church bathroom and handed it over to Bien.
The ensuing drama has left parishioners not expecting the 34-year-old priest to return or ever be found.
Posted by Kay Ebeling
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