Father Jorge Antonio Velez-Lopez
Archdiocese of Baltimore/Alexandria/Capuchin
- 1987-1989: Escuela de Trabajo (San Jose, Colombia)
- 1990: Colegio Espritu Santu (Bogota, Colombia)
- 1991: Centro de Orientacion Juvenil (Cajica, Colombia)
- 1992: Colegio San Antonio (Bogota, Colombia)
- 1993-1998: Instituio Fray Luis Amigo (Lamira, Colombia)
- 1996-1998: Fundacion Universitaria (Palmira, Colombia)
- 1999-2001: Centro de Orientacion Juvenil (Cajica, Colombia)
- 2001-2002: Special Ministry/Unassigned Clergy, Office of Hispanic Ministry
- 2002-2010: St. John the Evangelist (Columbia, MD)
- 2002-2010: Holy Trinity (Glen Bernie, MD)
- 2002-2010: Resurrection of Our Lord Parish (Laurel, MD)
- 2002-2010: St. John the Evangelist (Frederick, MD)
- 2002-2010: Sacred Heart Church (Glyndon, MD)
- 2002-2010: St. Joseph Church (Cockeysville, MD)
- 2010-2016: Diocese of Alexandria, LA
Summary of Sexual Abuse Allegations Against Father Jorge Antonio Velez-Lopez
Father Jorge Antonio Velez-Lopez was a Capuchin priest who worked in multiple parishes in the Archdiocese of Baltimore in Maryland and the Diocese of Alexandria. In 2019, Fr. Velez-Lopez was listed on the Archdiocese of Baltimore’s Credibly Accused of Sexual Abuse of Minors list. In April 2023, Maryland’s Attorney General released a report alleging 156 Catholic clergy members sexually abused at least 600 children over six decades. The report lists the names of the abusers, including Father Velez-Lopez.
According to the AG’s report, in 2003, a complaint was made stating that Fr. Velez had kissed and purchased sleepwear for a teenage girl between 2001 and 2003. In 2009, a man reported that he walked in on Fr. Velez, naked and in bed with a teenage girl, in the man’s house while dog-sitting for him. Fr. Velez allegedly threatened harm to the man’s family in Colombia if he reported the abuse. According to diocesan documents, in 2010, the Archdiocese of Baltimore removed Fr. Velez’s local faculties for ministry but determined the allegations to be not credible.
Media reports also say that Velez-Lopez was accused in 2016 of sexually abusing a girl in 2007 while Father Valez was assigned to St. John the Evangelist Parish in Columbia, Maryland. The alleged victim was a 15-year-old parishioner at the Church of the Resurrection in Laurel, Maryland. The Archdiocese says the allegation was reported to civil authorities in Howard County and to the Diocese of Alexandria, Louisiana, where Father Valez had most recently been serving. The victim claimed the abuse went on for three years, and she became pregnant with his child.
In 2016, the victim reported to her priest that her son’s father was Fr. Velez. The investigation into the allegations of sexual abuse- previously deemed not credible- was reopened. Fr. Velez met the victim when she was 13 years old while she was preparing for catechism. Fr. Velez-Lopez confirmed the allegation in a meeting with the Archdiocese of Baltimore—where the abuse took place.
The Diocese of Alexandria removed Fr. Velez-Lopez from ministry and prohibited him from living within the diocese. The Archdiocese of Baltimore sent Fr. Velez-Lopez’s case to the Congregation for Doctrine of Review in Rome. The Diocese of Alexandria subsequently named Fr. Jorge Antonio Velez-Lopez on lists of clergy credibly accused of sexual abuse of a minor in 2019, as well as Baltimore’s. According to the Attorney General’s report, in 2020, Fr. Velez was convicted of sex abuse of a minor and sentenced to 25 years, with 16 years suspended.
Horowitz Law is a law firm representing victims and survivors of sexual abuse by Catholic priests and other clergy in the Archdiocese of Baltimore in Maryland. If you need a lawyer because you were sexually abused by a priest in Maryland, contact our office today. Our lawyers have decades of experience representing survivors of clergy sexual abuse nationwide. We can help. Contact us at 888-283-9922 or [email protected] to discuss your options today.