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Ex-Mormon bishop pleads guilty to child sex abuse

SALT LAKE CITY — A former Mormon bishop and co-founder of a nonprofit group that helps women and children in Third World villages faces up to life in prison when he is sentenced in November for sexually abusing children.

The 69-year-old man from Heber City, Utah, pleaded guilty this week to three counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child. Each count involves a different victim, and carries a sentence of five years to life.

The victims were among six children adopted from Ethiopia, where the man and his wife helped establish an orphanage.

The Associated Press isn’t naming the man to protect the identity of the victims.

The couple’s nonprofit organization provided services to destitute villages in Mexico, Central America, Africa and the Caribbean.

The man was initially charged with 43 counts stemming from abuse that began in 1995, around the time the defendant was bishop of his LDS ward and one year after he and his wife started the nonprofit agency.

The remaining charges were dismissed in exchange for his guilty plea.

From wire dispatches and staff reports