Mescalero man pleads guilty to sexual abuse of a child

            ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. – James Darius Caje, 27, of Mescalero, New Mexico, and an enrolled member of the Mescalero Apache Tribe, pleaded guilty on June 10 in federal court to sexual abuse of a minor. Caje will remain in custody pending sentencing.

            According to the plea agreement and other court records, on the night of Feb. 24 or early morning Feb. 25, 2020, Caje allegedly entered the bedroom of the victim, who was 14-years old, and sexually assaulted her. The following day, the victim reported the assault to a school counsellor, who then reported it to law enforcement. The assault occurred on the Mescalero Apache Reservation.

            By the terms of the plea agreement, Caje faces 10 years in prison.

            The FBI investigated this case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron O. Jordan is prosecuting the case.

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