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Tse Bonitio man indicted for sexual abuse

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ALBUQUERQUE – An 84 year old man from Tse Bonito, N.M.,  was recently indicted for sexual abuse.

The alleged incidents happened back in 1988 and 2000, but the man, Tom Tso, a member of the Navajo Nation, was indicted by a grand jury on Nov. 9.

According to the indictment, between Aug. 4, 1998, and Oct. 11, 2000, Tso, 84, allegedly engaged in and attempted to engage in sexual acts with a victim, identified as Jane Doe, who was physically incapable of declining to participate in, and communicating unwillingness to engage in, that sexual act. Jane Doe is an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation, and the alleged assault occurred on the Navajo Nation.

Alexander M.M. Uballez, United States Attorney for the District of New Mexico, and Raul Bujanda, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office, announced that Tso was arraigned on Nov. 15 on an indictment charging him with sexual abuse. Tso will remain at a halfway house on conditions of release pending trial, which has not been scheduled.

An indictment is only an allegation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, Tso faces up to 20 years in prison.

The Gallup Resident Agency of the FBI Albuquerque Field Office investigated this case. Assistant United States Attorney Alexander F. Flores is prosecuting the case as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse. Led by United States Attorneys’ Offices and DOJ’s Criminal Division’s Child Exploitation and Obscenity Section, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims.

For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit http://www.justice.gov/psc/