An old California lawyer and church leader was sentenced to 40 years in jail after pleading guilty to assaulting young girls.
“I took advantage of the trust you had in me and manipulated and abused her in the worst possible way, I am so sorry for what I have done to you and your families”, Steven matlak, 44, told the families of his victims. “You were friendly and kind to me and I paid him back by stabbing you in the back.”
Matlak was arrested twice in 2017. Monday marked the first time he apologized to the families of his victims, saying he manipulated them in order to gain access to their daughters. All the victims were under 10 years old, the youngest was five years old.
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“I lied to you, manipulated situations and took advantage of free moments to commit my crimes”, declared the convict child molester. “My actions were extremely mean and horrible. I am so sorry I did all of this.”
He agreed to a plea deal with the Fresno County District Attorney’s Office and accepted a 40-year prison sentence after pleading guilty to charges such as obscene or lascivious acts with a minor and continued sexual abuse of a child.
Matlak had previously specialized in business, trust and estate law in Fresno, and also conducted a Bible study in his home for young members of the Early Presbyterian Church.
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He also highlighted sex addiction for his crimes, but families did not accept the explanation, claiming he is a pedophile and his victims are marked by him.
“I bought new security doors and cameras to make sure my daughters feel a lot safer in our house,” a father said, according to the Fresno Bee. “I no longer trust anyone with the responsibility of caring for or supervising my children.”
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While a mother said 40 years behind bars was not enough for Matlak.
“Forty years will not undo the damage done to innocent little girls who will potentially have to navigate every romantic relationship through the shattered goal of being the prey of a rude old man,” she said.
Matlak will be almost 80 years old by the time he is eligible for parole.