SAN ARDO — A Monterey County judge sentenced Angel Rojas Lugos, 43, of San Ardo, to 142 years to life in the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation on May 19.
On March 15, a jury found Lugos guilty of two counts of committing oral copulation on a child 10 years of age or under, and 14 counts of committing forcible lewd or lascivious acts on a child under 14 years of age. All 16 counts are violent felonies and are considered “strikes” under California’s Three Strikes law.
In addition to his prison sentence, Lugos is required to register as a sex offender for life.
According to the Monterey County District Attorney’s Office, the victim reported that Lugos, a family member, molested her many times over a two-year period. She was under 10 years old at the time the molestation began.
“(The victim) stated she waited to report the molestation because she was afraid she would get in trouble and that she would not be believed,” the DA’s Office stated in a news release.
At trial, the victim testified about the repeated instances of molestation that occurred.
An expert in the psychological effects of child sexual abuse also testified that delayed disclosures of molestation are incredibly common due to numerous factors, including: the power imbalance between the perpetrator and victim, threats to not say anything, fear, and even affection for a perpetrator if he or she is a close family member, friend or authority figure.