Orthodox Cleric Admits To Kid-Sex Rap

Author: Joe McGurk
Date Published: 05/15/2003
VRIONIS Ends trial with guilty plea
VRIONIS Ends trial with guilty plea

An Orthodox archbishop accused of molesting a teen parishioner copped a plea yesterday as opening arguments were about to begin at his trial in Queens Supreme Court.

Pangratios Vrionis, the 59-year-old founder of the Orthodox Christian Archdiocese of Vasiloupolis in Woodside, pleaded guilty to three counts of child-sex abuse and was sentenced to a year’s probation and a year of sex counseling.

Vrionis, who was defrocked by the Greek Orthodox Church of America in 1970 after being convicted of child sodomy in Pennsylvania, also will be identified as a sex offender in notices containing his photo that will be sent to all city schools.

He was arrested last year after a Sunnyside boy, who was in Vrionis’ Greek and religion classes, told authorities the priest had lured him to his home when he was 14, claiming the boy needed special tutoring – and then molested him.

The boy, now 17, hugged his mother in court after the plea deal was struck.

“If it wasn’t for the New York Post, this wouldn’t be happening today,” said the mom.

She explained she and her son had kept the sex abuse a secret until she read a Post expos