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Priest jailed on accusations of fondling girl

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BLUE EARTH, Minn. (AP) — The Diocese of Winona said a Blue Earth priest has been placed on administrative leave after he was charged with sexually assaulting a young girl.

Bishop John Quinn said in a statement that the Rev. Leo Koppala is not allowed to minister in the Winona diocese while the investigation continues.

A criminal complaint filed in Faribault County accuses Koppala of fondling an 11-year-old girl last week at the home of her grandmother where he had been invited to dinner. The 47-year-old priest serves the Catholic Church of Saints Peter and Paul in Blue Earth.

Koppala is currently in the Faribault County Jail. The public defender’s office did not immediately return a call seeking comment.

The St. Paul Pioneer Press said Koppala also raises funds for orphans in his native India through a website.


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Below are the 14 names of Diocese of Winona priests “credibly accused” of child sexual abuse. All dates and details were provided by the diocese.

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