The State of Louisiana, the federal government and the general public all take allegations of sex crimes against minors very seriously. Those accused of exploiting children sexually will face stiff penalties if convicted and will often find little sympathy within their community.
Recently, a Louisiana pastor was arrested and faces federal charges that he transported three minor girls across state lines for illegal sexual activity. The incidents allegedly occurred between January 1994 and December 2000 during choir trips out of state.
The 54-year-old man, a pastor and choir director at a nondenominational church in Shreveport, was denied bail after the court agreed with prosecutors that the man presents a flight risk. Reportedly, the man's frequent travel out of state and the fact that the alleged incidents were said to have happened out of state helped to convince the court of the risk that the man might try to flee Louisiana.
The man was first arrested last year after allegations surfaced that he had molested several girls involved with his church. He was arrested again two weeks later and charged with more counts of child molestation.
Those who are convicted of federal charges involving sex crimes against children face long prison sentences and fines. Even after they are released, these individuals could spend years on the National Sex Offender Registry, seriously interfering with their ability to find suitable employment or housing.
Because the charges are so serious, it's crucial that Louisiana residents accused of these crimes take their defense very seriously. With the proper criminal defense strategy, people can help minimize the damage to their personal and professional lives.
Source: WAFB, "No bond for Shreveport pastor charged with federal sex crimes," Carolyn Roy, Nov. 26, 2013