- Associated Press - Friday, March 27, 2015

FARGO, N.D. (AP) - A Fort Yates man convicted in a sexual abuse case that dates back to 1997 says he should not have been prosecuted because of a conflict of interest in the U.S. attorney’s office.

A federal jury in November found Donald Luger guilty of aggravated sexual abuse by use of force. Authorities say the assault took place against a 12-year-old girl in 1997.

Luger says former U.S. Attorney Timothy Purdon represented him in a 2009 criminal case and that gave the government an unfair advantage in the sexual abuse proceedings.

An assistant U.S. attorney says Purdon officially withdrew from the case and did not receive any “updates, briefings or any other information” regarding the prosecution of Luger.

A hearing is scheduled Friday morning in Fargo. Luger has not yet been sentenced.

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