LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — A 51-year-old fugitive who was wanted on child molestation charges in Riverside County was captured in Mexico and turned over to federal agents in Los Angeles Thursday afternoon, according to the Federal Bureau of Investigation.
Marlon Lopez is accused of numerous sex crimes against his four daughters over a span of about six years. Authorities said it happened at their home in the Riverside area in the 1990s before his wife turned him in.
On Sept. 28, 2002, Lopez was charged with 22 counts of lewd or lascivious acts with a child in Riverside County Superior Court.
He was arrested on March 12, 2005. Lopez, however, failed to appear in court after posting a $500,000 bond, according to officials.
In July 2005, Lopez was charged with a total of 31 counts in connection with the alleged molestations. A month later, another arrest warrant was issued.
The Riverside County Sheriff’s Department and the district attorney’s office then requested the assistance of the FBI to help locate Lopez.
During an investigation conducted by the FBI’s Inland Regional Apprehension Team, it was determined that Lopez had fled California to El Salvador.
As a result, on July 17, 2006, a federal arrest warrant was issued in the United States District Court, Central District of California, charging Lopez with unlawful flight to avoid prosecution.
A subsequent investigation revealed that Lopez moved from El Salvador to Mexico City sometime in 2013.
On March 12, Lopez was found and arrested in Tultitlan, Mexico. The next day, he was transported to Los Angeles International Airport, where he was taken into custody.
Lopez is currently being held at the Robert Presley Jail in Riverside.
If convicted, he could face more than 300 years behind bars.
Two of Lopez’s grown children told CBS2’s Crystal Cruz off-camera that they’re happy about the arrest and have moved on with their lives. His kids also said they’ve made careers in the medical field and the military.
A family friend, who didn’t want to be identified, said, “I think that it’s great that he was finally arrested because people who molest children shouldn’t be out in the general community. They need to be put somewhere they can get help and deal with the consequences of their actions.”