San Francisco archbishop-elect arrested for DUI

Bishop Salvatore Cordileone of Oakland, Calif. makes the sign of the cross during the fall meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops Monday, Nov. 15, 2010 in Baltimore. AP Photo/Steve Ruark

(CBS/AP) SAN DIEGO - The Roman Catholic archbishop-elect of San Francisco was arrested for investigation of driving under the influence, San Diego police said Monday.

The Rev. Salvatore Cordileone, a vigorous supporter of California's same-sex marriage ban, was taken into custody after being stopped early Saturday at a checkpoint near the San Diego State University campus, said Detective Gary Hassen, a police spokesman. He declined to comment on whether Cordileone took a sobriety test.

There was no record of Cordideone being in custody on Monday. The San Diego city attorney's office, which prosecutes misdemeanor DUI offenses, said it had not received a report on the arrest.

Cordileone, 56, is a native of San Diego, where he was raised and ordained as a priest in 1982. In July, Pope Benedict XVI selected him to replace Archbishop George Niederauer, who is retiring in October. Cordileone was most recently bishop of Oakland and several years ago, he was an auxiliary bishop in San Diego.

While serving in San Diego four years ago, Cordileone was instrumental in devising an initiative to strip same-sex couples of the right to wed in California and then raising Catholic dollars to qualify it for the ballot. He also was part of a statewide network of clergy that promoted the measure, known as Proposition 8. Campaign finance records show he personally gave at least $6,000 to back the voter-approved ban.

Cordileone also served in Rome for seven years as an assistant at the Supreme Tribunal of the Apostolic Signatura, the highest judicial body in the vatican, according to the San Diego Union-Tribune. His career spans three decades.

Since last year, Cordileone has been chairman of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' Subcommittee for the Promotion and Defense of Marriage.

In an interview with the National Catholic Register last year, Cordileone said that same-sex marriage is "a very serious social experiment that will have dire consequences."

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