A Louisiana ex-priest has received a 25-year prison sentence after admitting to drugging and molesting 17 men he encountered in New Orleans’ French Quarter, Your Content has learned.
Prosecutors state that Stephen Sauer, 61, targeted individuals who seemed inebriated, disoriented, or in need of assistance. He would offer his help, only to drug them and transport them to his residence in Metairie, located approximately 7 miles west of the district.
Sauer has pleaded guilty to 13 counts of sexual battery, nine counts of third-degree rape, 17 counts of video voyeurism, and 16 misdemeanor charges of drug possession. District Judge Shayna Beevers Morvant sentenced him to 25 years in prison, along with lifelong registration as a sex offender.
The victims, many of whom were out-of-state visitors, were often separated from their friends or lost when approached by Sauer. By photographing their identification cards, Sauer’s victims could be identified by detectives. Sauer employed various methods, such as lacing their drinks with narcotics or using sleep-inducing substances, to render them unconscious.
He would then transport the incapacitated men to his home, where he recorded and took photos of them. After molesting some victims, Sauer would return them to their respective hotels or other locations the next morning. An investigation by the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office revealed that Sauer distributed or exchanged the images online.
The inquiry began when Sauer sent a hard drive containing hundreds of images to a New York repair company, which subsequently alerted law enforcement. Detectives believe that over 50 victims remain unidentified, as the offenses occurred between 2019 and 2021.
Sauer’s attorney, Mike Ciaccio, has not yet provided a comment. The Jesuits USA Central and Southern Province confirmed Sauer’s previous priesthood and encouraged anyone harmed by him to notify law enforcement, according to CNN.