California minister sentenced to 34 years in sex abuse case

MARTINEZ, Calif. (AP) — A former minister who jumped bail during his trial for sexually assaulting a teen parishioner has been sentenced in Northern California to more than 34 years in prison.

The East Bay Times reports Fernando Maldonado, who was recently captured in Mexico, sat silently during a sentencing hearing Friday in a San Francisco Bay Area courtroom.

He was convicted last year of more than 20 sex abuse counts. Maldonado was first arrested in 2016, just days after the teen victim went to police to report the abuse she said started three years earlier.

Maldonado used to work at Morello Baptist Church in Martinez. He later became a minister for the Grace Bible Church in Pleasant Hill.

Categories: California News