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Pittsburgh-area priest charged with child pornography

May 21, 2013 at 5:12 PM

PITTSBURGH, May 21 (UPI) -- A Catholic priest in western Pennsylvania has been charged with possession of child pornography.

Federal prosecutors in Pittsburgh said Monday that David Dzermejko, 64, of Braddock was arrested last week and released on $50,000 unsecured bond, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

Under the conditions of his release, he cannot use a computer or have unsupervised contact with children.

Dzermejko is the former pastor of Mary, Mother of the Church parish in Charleroi, Pa. The Pittsburgh diocese said he has been suspended from functioning as a priest since 2009.

He had been living in diocesan housing but was asked to leave after federal agents searched his apartment earlier this year.

The diocese has received three credible allegations of that Dzermejko molested boys, church officials say. But he was never charged with that crime.

In early January, another Pittsburgh-area priest, Bartley Sorenson, was sentenced to eight years for child pornography. A few days later, Bishop David Zubik sent a letter to all priests in the diocese reminding them that simply possessing child pornography is "a criminal act for which society will hear no excuse, accept no extenuating circumstances, or grant any mercy."

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