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Worthington man makes initial appearance in criminal sex case

WORTHINGTON -- Faustino Daniel Velasquez Berduo, a.k.a. Reynaldo Ramos Sambrano Jr., 21, of Worthington, made his initial appearance in Nobles County District Court this week to face one felony count of second-degree criminal sexual conduct and o...

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Berduo

WORTHINGTON - Faustino Daniel Velasquez Berduo, a.k.a. Reynaldo Ramos Sambrano Jr., 21, of Worthington, made his initial appearance in Nobles County District Court this week to face one felony count of second-degree criminal sexual conduct and one gross misdemeanor count of fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct against a 10-year-old child. 

According to the criminal complaint against Berduo, the victim reported sexual abuse committed by the defendant from September 2014 until December 2015. During an interview with Child’s Voice in Sioux Falls, S.D., the child alleged inappropriate touching by Berduo and that in a separate incident, Berduo committed a lewd act in front of the child. Further, the child indicated the alleged abuse began when the child was 8 years old.
The child contends that when the allegations were reported to the child’s father, they were ignored. The child’s mother told the interviewer the child told the father Berduo wanted to “rape (the child).”
Berduo was arrested by the Worthington Police Department on probable cause and interviewed at the Nobles County Jail with the assistance of the language line. Berduo told officers that he knew the child, but denied that anything sexual had happened with or in front of the child. The report indicated when Berduo was asked a question, he’d smile or laugh before answering, telling officers he was laughing because the questions were absurd.
During Tuesday’s hearing, Berduo’s attorney asked for his bail to be lowered from $30,000 with conditions and $60,000 without conditions to $10,000 and $30,000, respectively. The defense noted that Berduo has ties to the community, having lived in Minnesota for two years, and has had no other felony convictions.
The defense also gave absolute assurance Berduo would attend all hearings should he be released. The defense noted that the allegations against Berduo are serious, but contended they are merely allegations.
The prosecution opposed the modification, stating Berduo poses a significant risk to the public safety of the community as a whole and particularly to children. The request for a modification was denied, but could be reconsidered in the future. For now, Berduo remains in custody in the Nobles County Jail.
If convicted, second-degree criminal sexual conduct carries a maximum sentence of not more than 25 years imprisonment, a fine not to exceed $35,000 or both. Fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct carries a maximum penalty of one year imprisonment, a $3,000 fine or both.
He is scheduled to appear in court for a contested omnibus hearing in early March.

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