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A former Roman Catholic priest who fled the United States decades ago has been sentenced to 30 years in prison after a jury found him guilty of sexually abusing an altar boy at a veterans' cemetery and military base.
Axar.az reports citing foreign media that in ordering the sentence, US District Judge in New Mexico Martha Vazquez said it was the worst case of child sex abuse she has handled over the course of 26 years.
At one point, the judge demanded that 81-year-old defendant Arthur Perrault look a woman in the eyes as she testified about being abused by him.
The judge also condemned Perrault for only being concerned about his sexual needs.
"You chose as a profession the life of being a priest. It was supposed to be your job to help, not destroy," she said.
Prosecutors had asked the judge for special consideration of a life sentence for Perrault, once a pastor at an Albuquerque parish and a chaplain at Kirtland Air Force Base.
The victim at the center of the prosecutors' case said Perrault took him on excursions to amusement parks and to the military base and had touched him inappropriately as many as 100 times starting when he was 10.
The abuse ended in 1992, the year Perrault left the state. A lawyer had been preparing two lawsuits at the time against the Archdiocese of Santa Fe alleging Perrault had sexually assaulted seven children.
2019.09.14 / 09:11