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BALTIMORE (AP) — Officials with the Archdiocese of Baltimore have suspended a local parish priest amid allegations of child sexual abuse.

Diocesan officials said Monday that 77-year-old Father Luigi Esposito has been suspended from his duties as pastor at Our Lady of Pompei Church in Baltimore pending the outcome of a church investigation.

Officials say the alleged abuse occurred in the 1970s while Esposito was serving as associate pastor of the parish.

The alleged victim claims the abuse began at the age of 14 and occurred multiple times.

Esposito has denied the allegations.

Church officials say they have been cooperating and sharing information with civil authorities and met with Esposito on Thursday to discuss the allegations.