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Ohio authorities have charged 27-year-old Guatemalan immigrant with rape of a minor under 13 years old in a case involving a 10-year-old victim that has made national headlines since the Supreme Court overturned Roe v. Wade.
Gerson Fuentes was arraigned in a Franklin County court on Tuesday, according to county records. He is being held in the Franklin County Correctional Center without bail.
“My heart aches for the pain suffered by this young child. I am grateful for the diligent work of the Columbus Police Department in securing a confession and getting a rapist off the street,” Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost said in a Wednesday statement. “Justice must be served and BCI stands ready to support law enforcement across Ohio putting these criminals behind bars.”
A preliminary hearing is scheduled for Fuentes on July 22.
An Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) source told Fox News Digital on Wednesday that Gerson was in the United States illegally from Guatemala. The source also said ICE has placed a detainer on Fuentes, which is a request he eventually be handed over to the agency for removal proceedings.
The case made national headlines this week after Dr. Caitlin Bernard, a physician based in Indianapolis who performs abortions, told The Indy Star that the victim in question was six weeks pregnant when she had to travel from Ohio to Indiana to undergo an abortion procedure.
The Columbus Police Department did not comment on the case or confirm Fuentes’ arrest, but Det. Jeffrey Huhn testified Wednesday that the victim underwent an abortion in Indiana on June 30, the Columbus Dispatch reported.
Ohio state law bands abortions sought six weeks after conception with an exception for cases that endanger or compromise the physical health of the mother.
Critics questioned the validity of the case, citing a lack of verification from authorities.
President Biden has cited the story in his criticism of the Supreme Court’s abortion ruling during a Monday White House speech announcing an executive order meant to “protect access to abortion.”
Fox News’ Adam Shaw and Bill Melugin contributed to this report.