Lawyers scrambling to prevent deportation of priest accused of sexually abusing girls at church

The Beacon-News

Hannah Leone

With his ordered deportation looming, a former Aurora priest charged with sexually abusing two young girls at their Catholic church got a new trial date Friday that no one knows if he’ll be able to make.

By Sept. 18, when his trial is now to start, Afredo Pedraza Arias may be back in his native Columbia, as directed in a June 14 deportation order signed by a federal immigration judge.

If Arias were deported, prosecutors could ask to have him tried in absentia, but they’ve said it’s unclear if that would work or if he could be extradited for proceedings.

Kane County prosecutors said they learned U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement officials can’t hold Arias beyond Monday, and that he’ll be deported if he’s not in the jail.

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