Public prosecutors are willing to drop charges against the couple filmed bonking behind the altar of a Belgian church if they agree to attend a course and meet with the pastor.
The video, filmed at Sint-Michielskerk Church in the city of Bree in the north-eastern Belgian province of Limburg, sparked outrage online when it went viral in late October and early November.
In the footage, the couple appears to have sexual intercourse behind the church altar as the man films with one hand and occasionally gropes his partner’s waist with the other.
It is unclear when the video was filmed or by whom, but it first started doing the rounds on WhatsApp before it spread on social networks.
Following an online backlash, the police launched an investigation into the filmed incident at the publicly accessible building.
Bree mayor Liesbeth Van der Auwera said: “The police have announced that a double report has officially been drawn up.”
Sint-Michielskerk Church spokesperson Ernest Essers said the incident “exceeded all boundaries of decency, respect, and fairness.”
He said he received the video via WhatsApp on 29th October, adding: “This is public defamation. We are going to file a complaint with the police.
“Due to the extended All Saints weekend, this would have happened on Wednesday (27th October)”, he speculated.
However, according to the news site GVA, the couple is likely to escape punishment after public prosecutors offered them a plea bargain.
In exchange for a confession of guilt, the couple will escape prosecution if they complete a training course and successful mediation with the pastor.
The church and many devotees reportedly reacted with surprise at the plea bargain, but are willing to accept the decision and forgive the couple.
It is unclear if the defendants intend to accept the prosecution’s offer.