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Indian Catholic Priest arrested for sexually abusing minor in Rapid City, US

Rapid City, Oct 4 (IENews) Indian Catholic Priest Fr John Praveen Itukulapati arrested earlier this week on two counts of sexual abuse with a minor girl 13-years of age.

Fr. John Praveen Itukulapati, 38 year of age, is a member of the Sanjeev Sadana Society (Holy Spirit Fathers of India) in the state of Telangana, India.

The accused priest was presented in court yesterday in handcuffs and shackles via video conferencing from the Pennington Country Jail.

The Pennington County state’s attorney filed a complaint on October 2, charging Fr Praveen with two counts of sexual contact with a child under 16, each count a Class 3 felony with a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison.

Fr Praveen was posted at the Our Lady of Perpetual Help Cathedral in Rapid City, South Dakota. He was in the United States on a work visa from India as he was sent to the Rapid City Diocese temporarily.

Magistrate Judge Bernie Schuchmann set Fr Praveen’s bond at USD 100,000 cash only with the added stipulation that he make no contact with the 13-year-old girl he is accused of improperly touching or three other members of her family.

Schuchmann has also informed the accused priest that he faced deportation if convicted the crime.

The accused priest has been removed from all ministerial duties at the Rapid City Diocese, informed Bishop Robert Gruss.

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