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Trial Underway for Former Priest Accused of Raping Santa Fe County Boy

A criminal trial isn’t necessarily a search for the truth, a defense attorney for a former priest charged with sex crimes in Santa Fe County told jurors Thursday in opening arguments. It’s more a question of whether the state can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the crimes occurred.

Attorney Ryan Villa represents Marvin Archuleta, who is accused of tying up and raping a first grader at Holy Cross Catholic School in Santa Cruz during the 1986-87 school year.

Archuleta, 82, is the first priest to be put on trial as a result of an investigation state Attorney General Hector Balderas began in 2016 into allegations of sexual assaults by New Mexico clergy members going back decades.

Read more at Santa Fe New Mexican