KALISPELL, Montana, March 25, 2011 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A leader of the company that manages Rev. John Corapi’s media has claimed that the recent accusations against the popular priest were launched by a “disgruntled” former employee who vowed to “destroy” Corapi’s reputation.

Corapi, a well-known Catholic personality and member of the Society of Our Lady of the Most Holy Trinity (SOLT) who has been extremely outspoken on the life and family issues, has been placed on “administrative leave” in consultation with the diocese of Corpus Christi, Texas, where SOLT is based.

The move was in reaction to a letter by a former employee of the media company sent to several bishops and claiming that Corapi was addicted to drugs and sexually involved with multiple women.

The priest himself announced the allegations in a note on his website, and has said that all the allegations are false. 

Bobbi Ruffatto, Vice President of Operations at Santa Cruz Media, Inc., said in a statement Friday that the only evidence against Corapi thus far is “the unsubstantiated rant of a former employee, who, after losing her job with this office, physically assaulted me and another employee and promised to ‘destroy’ Father Corapi.”

Ruffatto notes that Santa Cruz is “a secular corporation and not affiliated with the Catholic Church in any way” and thus not under any bishop’s jurisdiction.

Stating that the company “fully support[s] Rev. John Corapi in this terrible trial,” Ruffatto said company leaders “have consulted with a number of canon lawyers” who have concluded “that the actions of the Bishop of Corpus Christi, Texas are, on several points of canon law, illicit,” although Ruffatto did not elaborate.

In his original note, Fr. Corapi had taken issue with the zero-tolerance policies used by the U.S. bishops to respond to allegations of misbehavior, which he suggested amount to presuming guilt until innocence is proven.

“There seems to no longer be the need for a complaint to be deemed ‘credible’ in order for Church authorities to pull the trigger on the Church’s procedure, which was in recent years crafted to respond to cases of the sexual abuse of minors,” he said.