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Priest Put on International Wanted List Over Child Sex Charges

Investigators said Wednesday that an Orthodox priest is suspected of sexually abusing two children during a holiday trip to a Greek island.

Law enforcement officials have put Gleb Grozovsky, a village priest with links to St. Petersburg's Zenit football club, on an international wanted list over allegations that he abused two underage girls at an Orthodox summer camp earlier this year.

Grozovsky, 34, is suspected of abusing the two girls, aged nine and 12, in June at a hotel on the Greek island of Kos, and committing "a range of similar crimes in St. Petersburg and the Leningrad Region," the Investigative Committee said in a statement.

The clergyman, who formerly served at a village church in the Leningrad region, was identified by the Investigative Committee as an adviser to Zenit's general director.

A spokesperson for Zenit said that Grozovsky, who studied at one of the city's specialized football schools, doesn't hold any official office at the football club.

Some of the club's players had turned to the priest on an individual basis, the spokesperson said.

"We've known Gleb since 2007 and can give positive references," the team's spokesperson said.

A court issued an arrest warrant last Friday for Grozovsky, who is currently believed to be on a work-related trip abroad.

The charges launched against the priest carry a maximum punishment of up to 20 years in jail.

The accusations are a rare incidence of pedophilia-related cases involving Russian Orthodox clergy.

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