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Campus Priest Sold Cocaine From Rectory

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Campus Priest Sold Cocaine From Rectory

NBC5

A Catholic priest who worked at the Newman Center at the University of Illinois in Champaign/Urbana was sentenced for selling cocaine from his office and the rectory.

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A campus priest who worked at the University of Illinois campus downstate has been sentenced to four years probation after being convicted of selling cocaine from his church office and rectory.

The Rev. Christopher Layden, who was most recently assigned to the Newman Center at the university, pleaded guilty to the Class 1
felony charge.

In addition to probation, Layden also was fined $2,500 and ordered to complete 150 hours of community service and recommended
drug treatment.

Defense attorney Mark Lipton said the priest has completed inpatient drug treatment and is following treatment plans. 

In a statement released Thursday, Catholic Diocese of Peoria Bishop Daniel Jenky said he continues to be saddened by Layden's
activities, adding Layden's removal from all pastoral ministry, announced after his arrest, remains in effect.
  

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