The head priest of the Corpus Christi Parish in Fremont has been arrested on suspicion of 30 counts of child sex abuse, officials said Sunday.
The Rev. Hector David Mendoza-Vela, 42, was arrested Thursday and booked into Santa Rita Jail in Dublin, where he is awaiting an arraignment in Alameda County Superior Court. His bail was set at $900,000.
The abuse happened over an 18-month period in 2016 and 2017 and involved a child who was 14 and 15 at the time, according to Sgt. Ray Kelly, a spokesman for the Alameda County Sheriff’s Office, which investigated the case.
The abuse, described only as “lewd and lascivious acts,” happened at the victim’s Hayward home and in other locations, Kelly said. He did not provide further details on the victim or the acts.
The teen recently confided in an adult, who contacted law enforcement, Kelly said.
Mendoza-Vela’s diocese of origin was in Zacatecoluca, El Salvador, where he worked with altar boys and choir members in youth ministry, according to a biography on the Oakland Diocese website. He moved to the United States in 2008 and is a legal resident but not a U.S. citizen, according to the diocese.
Full story at San Francisco Chronicle.