The case against Roman Catholic priest Eric Jose Dejaeger continues to grow.

The 65-year-old now faces 74 criminal charges – up from about 35 – stemming from his time in Igloolik, Nunavut, between 1978 and 1982.

The new charges, which come from 39 complainants, were announced by Crown prosecutors in the Nunavut Court of Justice Monday afternoon.


The number of criminal charges against Roman Catholic priest Eric Jose Dejaeger has risen from about 35 to 74. (CBC)

Crown and defence lawyers now have to confirm the number of counts.

The Crown also announced the charges stem from an alleged 18 more victims.

Crown prosecutor Paul Bychok said his office is waiting for hundreds of pages of disclosure. He said it is likely the Crown and defence will ask for one trial.

Bychok said a trial could take at least four weeks.

Dejaeger, who is in custody at the Baffin Correctional Centre, did not appear in court Monday. His next court appearance is May 14.

Dejaeger has also been charged in incidents that are alleged to have occurred in Edmonton between 1975 and 1978.

Dejaeger fled charges in Canada in 1995 and lived in Belgium for 16 years until he was expelled and returned to Nunavut to face the charges.

He had already pleaded guilty in 1990 to nine counts of sex crimes against boys and girls in Baker Lake, another community in Nunavut, and was sentenced to five years in prison.