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A man accused of sexually abusing two children was denied bail during his detention hearing on Monday.

Nelson Nieves, 34, appeared in 1st District Court via video conference call from the Cache County Jail. Nieves faces two counts of first-degree aggravated sexual abuse of a child, one count of first-degree sodomy on a child, and one count of second-degree attempted rape of a child.

Defense attorney Mike McGinnis told the court Nieves had no criminal history and argued for his release with an ankle monitor. According to McGinnis, Nieves denied the allegations and, if ordered to be held in jail, would likely be incarcerated for a year pending a resolution in the matter.

“This is a case that is likely to go to trial,” McGinnis told the court.

Cache County prosecutors argued Nieves be held without bail in order to protect the alleged victims in the case.

According to prosecutor Dane Murray, Nieves sexually abused two alleged child victims. Murray told the court Nieves inappropriately touched and photographed a 4-year-old victim and engaged in sexual activity with another 9-year-old victim.

Judge Angela Fonnesbeck ordered Nieves to be held without bail pending trial, citing public and victim safety.

“We’re talking about child victims here of a very young age,” Fonnesbeck said.

Nieves was arrested on Dec. 8 at his place of employment after declining to meet with investigators regarding the matters, according to documents filed with the court.

Nieves was set to appear before the court on Jan. 4 for a hearing to determine whether or not a preliminary hearing will be conducted in the case.

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