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Aurora Township man sentenced to prison for sexual assault

Enrique Ruiz | Submitted photo

Enrique Ruiz | Submitted photo

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Updated: February 14, 2014 12:11PM

An Aurora Township man who vanished shortly before he was to stand trial for sexually assaulting a relative was sentenced in absentia Thursday to prison for the crime.

Enrique Ruiz, 85, of the 0-99 block of North Farnsworth Avenue, Aurora, was sentenced by Circuit Judge James C. Hallock to 45 years in prison. In addition, Ruiz must register for life as a sexual offender in accordance with the Illinois Sex Offender Registration Act.

Ruiz was convicted in absentia Dec. 11, 2013, by a Kane County jury of two counts of predatory criminal sexual assault of a child, each a Class X felony, and aggravated criminal sexual abuse, a Class 2 felony.

On multiple occasions between June 4, 2004, and Nov. 30, 2010, Ruiz committed a sexual act with the victim, who was younger than 13 years old at the time. The victim is a relative of Ruiz.

The victim disclosed the assaults to a school counselor, who promptly notified authorities.

According to the Kane County Sheriff’s Department, family members reported Ruiz missing on Nov. 24, 2013. Ruiz told family members that he was going for a walk in Oakhurst Forest Preserve, left home and never returned. An extensive police search of the preserve proved fruitless.

During the trial, Ruiz’s wife testified that Ruiz’s Mexican passport was missing and that the family owns a house in Mexico City.

At the time he disappeared, Ruiz was free on $25,000 bond. A warrant has been issued for his arrest.

“This victim, like so many child victims of sexual assault, was assaulted and abused by someone who was entrusted to care for her but instead chose to satisfy his own perverted needs,” Kane County State’s Attorney Joe McMahon said. “This child should be praised for the tremendous courage she showed in coming forward not only in her own defense but also to prevent other children from being victimized.”

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