Priest Guilty Of Abuse In U.S. Is Deported To India

MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — A priest who was convicted of fondling a 12-year-old girl while he was working in the Diocese of Winona has been deported to his native India.

Officials with U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement say 48-year-old Leo Charles Koppala was turned over to authorities in New Delhi on Wednesday.

Koppola was charged last June with second-degree criminal sexual conduct. He pleaded guilty in March, admitting he fondled the girl while eating dinner at her grandmother’s house.

The Diocese of Winona has said Koppala was assigned in 2009 to the Catholic Church of Saints Peter and Paul in Blue Earth and to St. Mary’s in Winnebago. He was placed on leave in June, and the diocese alerted his home diocese of Nellore, India.

ICE says Koppala didn’t contest his deportation.

(© Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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