VAN NUYS (CBSLA.com) — A former usher at a Kingdom Hall of Jehova’s Witnesses faces 30 years in prison in exchange for pleading no-contest to sexual abuse involving three boys he met at the Sun Valley church.
Marcelo Lozano pleaded no contest Thursday to two counts of continuous sexual abuse and one count of oral copulation with a person under the age of 14. The remaining charges are due to be dropped.
“It’s a just outcome in the sense that we have to look out for the emotional impact that testifying in the trial would have on the victims in this case,” Deputy District Attorney Rena Durrant told KNX1070’s Claudia Peschiutta.
“It’s going to allow them to heal, have closure and move on with their lives,” Durrant said. “And it’s also going to exact what I believe to be an appropriate sentence on him and require that he register for life upon his release.”
Upon release from prison, Lozano will be required to register as a sex offender.
The crimes took place between Jan. 1, 2006 and June 30, 2013 and involved three boys ranging in ages from 8 to 15 at the time.
The 34-year-old Sun Valley man met the victims while serving as an usher at the Jehovah’s Witnesses Sun Valley Spanish Congregation. The prosecutor said none of the crimes took place at the Kingdom Hall of Jehova’s Witnesses.
Lozano is scheduled to be sentenced Oct. 8.