Last July, media outlets did stories about an unlicensed Winnebago pastor inappropriately touching a woman who attended his church.
Miguel Vasquez Alduzin was charged with fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and fifth-degree criminal sexual conduct in Martin County District Court.
Prosecutors in Faribault County also filed charges of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct and theft against Alduzin.
In case you missed the update, all charges against Alduzin were dismissed four months after being filed.
The cases in both counties were dropped without prejudice, meaning prosecutors still have the right to have the matter heard in court later.
Faribault County Attorney Cameron Davis says he dropped the charges, “in the interest of justice.”
Davis says Alduzin facing similar charges in Martin County involving the same victim may limit the resources available to either prosecution.
“County attorneys in both matters have coordinated to ensure the defendant is appropriately prosecuted,” says Davis.
Peter Odgren, assistant Martin County Attorney, gave several reasons why the case was dropped.
He says Alduzin’s attorneys notified his office they had evidence that the alleged victim made a false report to obtain a U-Visa.
During an interview the alleged victim provided documentation showing she has a permit to work in the U.S., but it was set to expire in February 2022.
The woman told investigators the past two years she has made an immigration application to stay in the U.S.
Victims of some crimes who are helpful in the investigation or prosecution of criminal activity may obtain an immigration document known as a U-Visa.
According to court papers, the woman admitted she is familiar with the process to obtain a U-Visa because she applied for one due to an incident in which she was assaulted while living in Texas.
“Further investigation of the alleged victim’s immigration application and status is needed to ensure justice is served in the matter,” says Odgren.
Prosecutors say a proposed witness, identified as G.R., with information critical to proving their case has decided she will not testify.
“The state also needs further investigation by the Fairmont Police Department into G.R.’s hesitancy to testify,” adds Odgren.