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Priest, ex-teacher get prison in abuse case

PHILADELPHIA — Exceeding sentencing guidelines, a judge on Wednesday handed down prison terms of at least six years to a Roman Catholic priest and a former teacher in a sex-abuse case that brought down a Philadelphia church official.

The Rev. Charles Engelhardt and Bernard Shero maintained their innocence, and the judge threw out the most serious conviction against Engelhardt for lack of evidence.

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Still, Engelhardt, a 66-year-old Oblate who had not previously been accused of abusing children, was sentenced to six to 12 years in prison. And Shero, convicted of rape, was sentenced to eight to 16 years.

‘‘I’ve accepted this injustice and I will continue to do so until it is righted, because I believe it will be righted,’’ said Engelhardt. ‘‘I had no interaction with [the accuser].”

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