Catholic priest sentenced to nearly 8 years in prison in Miami-Dade

When a woman said she was at her Catholic church’s clergy house when she drank an iced tea and woke up naked in a bed, the church’s priest called her a liar.

Rev. Jean Claude Philippe, a parochial vicar at the Sacred Heart Catholic Church in Homestead, would later be arrested.

On Thursday, Miami-Dade Circuit Judge Carmen Cabarga sentenced Philippe, 67, to 94.5 months, nearly 8 years, in prison after a jury convicted him of sexual battery.

The woman told another clergy member and detectives that she had trusted Philippe so much that he had officiated her wedding and was her child’s Godfather.

Philippe was accused of undressing her, massaging her with oil, and raping her before she woke up two hours later to find him in his underwear in October 2018, according to the police report.

The Archdiocese of Miami received the complaint on March 4, 2019. Prosecutors filed the case against Philippe on March 18, 2019. He pled not guilty and demanded a trial on April 11, 2019. A jury found him guilty on Nov. 4.

This is a developing story.

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