High-ranking priest in Boston archdiocese facing prostitution charge

A high-ranking priest in the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Boston is facing a prostitution charge. reported that the Rev. Arthur Coyle, 62, pleaded not guilty Monday to one count of sexual conduct for a fee in Lowell, Mass. and was released on $500 bail. Police say that Coyle was arrested Sunday afternoon after being found with a prostitute behind a Lowell cemetery. 

The prostitute told police that Coyle had given her $40 to perform a sex act and showed the two $20 bills to police as proof. She said it was the second time that Coyle had paid her in return for sex acts. Police said that Coyle had been observed circling known prostitution locations in Lowell for close to a year before his arrest. 

Coyle holds the title of Episcopal Vicar for the Merrimack Region, which means that he oversees several Catholic parishes in the Lowell area. 

The Archdiocese of Boston released a statement Monday saying that Coyle had taken a voluntary administrative leave following his arrest and was forbidden from performing any public ministry. 

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