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Haitian Students Testify at Perlitz Sentencing in New Haven

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By DAVE COLLINS, Associated Press

NEW HAVEN, Conn. (AP) _ Six young Haitian men have testified in a Connecticut courtroom about sexual abuse they suffered at the hands of an American man who ran a school in their impoverished Caribbean nation.

The victims said they struggled with feelings of shame after Douglas Perlitz coerced them into sex for money. One says Perlitz threw him out onto the street when he refused to have sex.

They testified Tuesday at a sentencing hearing for the 40-year-old Perlitz of Eagle, Colo. The former Connecticut resident admitted in August to engaging in illicit sexual conduct with eight children.

Prosecutors want Perlitz sent to prison for more than 19 years. His attorneys have urged leniency, saying despite the crimes he also helped street children in Haiti.

(Copyright 2010 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)

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