EHT man ordered held after allegedly sexually abusing girl for 11 years
An Egg Harbor Township man who allegedly sexually abused a girl for more than a decade was ordered held in jail.
Rufino Carreon-Peralta, 46, was arrested after the now-16-year-old girl reported the abuse and police were called to Eagle Academy in the township.
The assaults allegedly went further as the girl got older, with him taking her to a motel in the township when she was 15, where they had sex. Carreon-Peralta allegedly gave the girl $1,000 at that time.
BreakingAC is not detailing how the two know each other to protect the victim’s identity.
The girl told police it started with sexual contact when she was 5 years old and progressed to oral sex at 10 before the motel incident.
She originally reported sexual touching when she was 5, according to information presented at Carreon-Paralta’s detention hearing.
The Division of Child Protection and Permanency investigated at that time, but did not find anything inappropriate. The girl then recanted her claims.
“The nature of DCPP investigations are much different than criminal investigations,” Assistant Prosecutor Joseph Remy told the judge.
It was not clear why DCPP would not have notified police or the Atlantic County Prosecutor’s Office about the claims at the time for a potential criminal investigation.
The girl has also made claims against her mother that were unfounded, and appears troubled, defense attorney Andrew Butchko said.
“Her family tells me she’s had three therapists between the ages of 14 and 15,” he said. “Had their been reports of sexual abuse with the therapists, it would have been followed up with with DCPP. I’m pretty sure there were no reports during that period of time.
“At 16, she refused to continue to participate in therapy,” Butchko added. “All these facts throw into question her account of the alleged sexual abuse. I suspect that we have some psychological issues at play here.”
But Remy said a recorded phone call the girl made to Carreon-Peralta confirmed much of what she said, and included setting up a sex act in exchange for money.
The defendant also allegedly talked about the incidents when the girl was 5 and 10.
Carreon-Peralta, who listed to the hearing via a Spanish interpreter, was born in Mexico and came to America in 1992, his attorney said. He became a citizen and has no criminal history.
He opened his own restaurant in Atlantic City, El Patron, where he is the only chef, Butchko told the judge.
With Carreon-Peralta jailed, “the business is in jeopardy of going under,” the attorney said.
The public safety assessment, used to help determine whether a defendant is held under bail reform, had him at the lowest risk for reoffending or failing to appear in court. Still, it recommended he not be released.
Carreon-Peralta and his wife have two daughters, ages 9 and 7. He would have lived with his sister in Pleasantville if released, his attorney said.
“The proofs appear strong against this defendant,” Superior Court Judge Dorothy Garrabrant said.
That the abuse allegedly continued for more than a decade “indicates this defendant will manipulate and control this victim at all costs for his own benefit.”
The allegations “show planning and design,” she said. “They were predatory and opportunistic.”
Carreon-Peralta will remain in the Atlantic County Justice Facility pending the outcome of the case.