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Former OC girls basketball coach sentenced to 150 years for molesting underage athletes – Orange County Register | #childpredator | #kidsaftey | #childsaftey

A former Orange County girls basketball coach was sentenced to 150 years to life in prison on Wednesday for sexually assaulting four female athletes between the ages of 11 and 17 years old.

The former coach, Carlos Francisco Juarez, 48 and from Costa Mesa, primarily coached for club basketball teams, including the So Cal Swoosh and O.C. Mustangs. Prosecutors said he also worked at Aliso Niguel, Costa Mesa, Mater Dei and Tustin high schools.

On July 18, a jury found Juarez guilty of 21 felony counts, including 10 counts of lewd acts upon a child under 14. Juarez is accused of coaching each of his four victims between 2005 and 2010, the Orange County District Attorney’s office said in a statement.

Jurors also heard evidence related to two other alleged victims who testified to bolster the prosecution’s claim of a pattern of targeting, grooming and attacking girls.

“This coach was in a position of trust and authority over these young girls and he took advantage of them. Youth sports should be a safe environment where neither parents nor athletes should have to worry about children being targeted by a sexual predator,” said Orange County District Attorney Todd Spitzer.

In 2005, one victim, who was 11 years old at the time, was told to practice topless during a private lesson with Juarez at a gym in Tustin. He is also accused of sexually assaulting the victim after a practice and then giving her an envelope of money.

Juarez was convicted of sexually assaulting three additional young female players, including a 14-year-old girl he coached during a private basketball lesson in 2008.

“As a result of the bravery of these young victims to speak out, another child molester is behind bars for the rest of his life and will no longer be allowed to prey on innocent children,” Spitzer said.

Juarez’s attorney, Kenneth Reed, declined to comment after conviction but said an appeal will be filed.

City News Service contributed to this story.

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