Defrocked Haverhill Priest Paquin to Serve 16 Years in Prison for Sexually Abusing Altar Boy

Ronald H. Paquin 2017 booking photo (Courtesy of York County Jail, Maine)

Ronald Paquin, the 76-year-old priest from Haverhill’s St. John the Baptist parish defrocked for child sex abuse, has been ordered to spend 16 years in a Maine prison for sexually abusing a boy in that state, a judge ruled Friday.

The Associated Press reports Justice Wayne Douglas said Paquin betrayed the “sacred trust” of his victims, including the altar boy at the center of the case, who was said to have been abused during trips to Maine in the 1980s.

During Friday’s hearing, Douglas imposed the maximum sentence of 20 years upon Paquin but suspended a portion of the sentence. He was convicted in November on 11 of 24 counts of gross sexual misconduct. His attorneys plan to appeal both the conviction and the sentence.

Highlighted in the movie “Spotlight,” Paquin was the first priest to admit guilt in a molestation case during the Catholic Church’s sex abuse scandal.

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