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Tag: Pastor Pastor Helio Ferreira

Black Collar Crime: Seventh Day Adventist Pastor Helio Ferreira Awaits Trial on Sex Crimes

Helio Santiago Ferreira

The Black Collar Crime Series relies on public news stories and publicly available information for its content. If any incorrect information is found, please contact Bruce Gerencser. Nothing in this post should be construed as an accusation of guilt. Those accused of crimes are innocent until proven guilty.

In December 2019, Helio Santiago Ferreira, pastor of Grace Fellowship Seventh Day Adventist Church in Valdosta, Georgia. Ferreira was accused of rape, sodomy, and kidnapping, crimes that allegedly took place in Oregon.

KATU reported at the time:

Law enforcement officers arrested a 41-year-old pastor in Georgia who is wanted in connection to several sexual assault cases in Portland.

The Portland Police Bureau said the Georgia Bureau of Investigation and the Lowndes County Sheriff’s Office arrested Helio Ferreira on Dec. 3 in Valdosta, Ga., where he’s a pastor in the community.

Ferreira is charged with two counts of first-degree sodomy, two counts of first-degree kidnapping, three counts of first-degree rape, one count of first-degree sexual assault, and one count of identity theft.

The Multnomah County District Attorney’s Office says Ferreira is accused of sexually abusing three women in 2012, 2016, and 2018.

According to the indictment, Ferreira engaged in sexual intercourse with a victim who was incapable of consent either because of mental incapacitation or physical helplessness on or around Nov. 17, 2012.

On or around Sept. 18, 2016, Ferreira is accused of kidnapping a different woman and forcing her to engage in sexual intercourse and other sex crimes.

The indictment says on or about Sept. 7, 2018, Ferreira kidnapped a third woman and forced her to engage in sexual intercourse. It says he also committed identity theft involving the victim.

The indictment says Ferreira is a suspect in these three cases based on DNA evidence.

Ferreira has now been extradited to Oregon, and remains in jail awaiting an August 2020 trial.

Bruce Gerencser, 66, lives in rural Northwest Ohio with his wife of 45 years. He and his wife have six grown children and thirteen grandchildren. Bruce pastored Evangelical churches for twenty-five years in Ohio, Texas, and Michigan. Bruce left the ministry in 2005, and in 2008 he left Christianity. Bruce is now a humanist and an atheist.

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Bruce Gerencser