This morning the Chicago Tribune reported on the plea hearing of Fr. James Dokos, who changed his plea today to “guilty” of theft charges. We have received reports of coverage by NBC and WGN 5:00 pm news as well.
As reported by those who attended the hearing, Fr. Dokos was smiling at times, gave barely audible one-word answers to the judge, and did not express remorse at any point.
In exchange for his guilty plea, Dokos was ordered to pay full restitution and 40 hours of community service. If all goes well, his felony conviction will be reduced to a misdemeanor in one year.
We at GOCCL.ORG feel this is a mere slap on the wrist, and an indication of what money can buy, with a high-powered attorney in the world of white-collar crime. Many are asking where he was able to come up with such capital to hire one of the most successful defense attorneys in Milwaukee. We also wonder.
Now that this case has come to a close in the court system, our attention turns to our Greek Orthodox Church leaders:
- What, if any, action will be taken by Church leaders, now that Dokos has admitted guilt? Will he be defrocked or will he continue to fill in as a substitute priest and administer Sacraments in the Chicago area, as he has been with the permission of the Metropolis of Chicago?
- Why did the Metropolis of Chicago come to the conclusion there was “no wrongdoing” after their investigation, yet civil authorities CHARGED Dokos with theft following their investigation? How will Church leaders address the wrongful investigation by the Metropolis of Chicago that only later resulted in an admission of guilt by Dokos once it became a matter of the state?
- Will the Hierarchy ignore the punitive actions taken by the Metropolis of Chicago (Chancellor Bishop Demetrios Kantzavelos and Metropolitan Iakovos) throughout their handling of this matter, especially considering the Chancellor Bishop Demetrios Kantzavelos received thousands of dollars from Dokos? (Whistleblower priest Fr. Artemas and Parish Council members endured pressure and punitive actions by the Metropolis that are all detailed in our Media Links section).
- Will the Bishop/Chancellor be removed? Will the Metropolitan retire?
- And an especially troubling question:
Why is there a letter UNDER SEAL from the Metropolis of Chicago submitted to the court in October of 2014, arguing that it should be settled by the church internally? You can view references to this letter HERE.
Why is this letter not open to the public along with other public correspondence from the Greek Orthodox Archdiocese of America? Could it be because this letter contains erroneous information regarding Church regulations that the Metropolis does not want the public to know about?
These are all questions that the faithful deserve an answer from the Greek Orthodox Church leaders.
Will they respond, or will they remain silent as they have done thus far?
Voice your concern and contact the Archdiocese to act:
AND IF YOU HAVE NOT ALREADY,