A Roman Catholic priest in Connecticut has pleaded not guilty to charges he stole $1.3 million in church money over seven years to use for male escorts, expensive clothing and luxury hotels and restaurants.

The Rev. Kevin J. Gray, former pastor at Sacred Heart/Sagrado Corazon Parish in Waterbury, was charged July 6 with first-degree larceny. His lawyer, Dennis Harrigan, says the 64-year-old Gray pleaded not guilty Wednesday when he was arraigned in Waterbury Superior Court.

Police say Gray used the money to stay at the Waldorf-Astoria, dine at Tavern on the Green and buy expensive clothing labels including Armani.

Gray had been Sacred Heart's pastor from January 2003 until April 15, when he was granted a medical leave. He was later suspended.

Gray is being held on $750,000 bond.