(NewsGlobal.com)- An American pastor who had adopted two orphans when he was working in Haiti was arrested last week by federal agents for “engaging in illicit sexual conduct” with a child while living in Haiti.
Federal agents arrested Corrigan Clay, 43, last Thursday in Pittsburgh. He is being prosecuted by the Justice Department’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section. According to the indictment, Clay sexually abused the unidentified child under the age of 18 from January 2014 to December 2017.
In 2008, Clay and his then-wife Shelley Jean moved to Haiti where they took jobs as “house parents” at an orphanage looking after 25 boys ranging in age from 7 to 17. The Clays launched a workshop to teach locals how to make jewelry and handicrafts. The products were sold both locally and abroad through partnerships with larger companies. Celebrities like Oprah Winfrey and Kim Kardashian were among their customers.
While in Haiti, they also opened an evangelical pre-school and adopted two Haitian orphans.
The Clays’ ministry, the Apparent Project, operated in Port-au-Prince with the goal of “building future leaders in Haiti.” He left the organization in 2013, but it is still registered as a 501(c)3.
As of late 2021, the Apparent Project still employed 25 Haitian teachers and support staff and had over 70 Haitian children enrolled in the school and over 25 teens and adults participating in its jobs training programs.
According to The National Pulse, the Apparent Project was visited and supported by former President Bill Clinton.
The Daily Beast spoke with Clay’s ex-wife Shelley Jean Clay who now operates a Haitian crafts market in Florida. She confirmed that the charges against her ex-husband involve one of their children. However, she would not say whether the victim was one of their two biological children or one of the two Haitian orphans they adopted.
Citing the court case, Shelley Jean Clay told the Daily Beast that she didn’t think she was at liberty to say more than that.
Clay was scheduled to appear in court this week. If convicted he faces up to 30 years in federal prison.