pastorOn Friday we broke the story of an alleged pastor criminally charged for Child Pornography offenses of two female minors. When we left you, 60 year old Gerardo Lopez, a construction worker and self-proclaimed Pastor was slapped with four counts of Child Pornography; two counts on the 3 year old and two counts for the ten year old student. And while police continue to investigate and the matter taken up with the Department of Human Development, today Lopez was formally arraigned in court. Reporter Maria Novelo has that story.


Maria Novelo – Reporting


60 year old Edgar Gerardo Lopez will be spending day one of his prison sentence tonight after being formally arraigned on child pornography offenses and denied bail. The charge stems from nude photographs found in his personal cellular phone of two minors, ages 3 and ten of Trial Farm Village in Orange Walk. When authorities questioned him about the pictures, Lopez, who proclaimed to be a pastor for the Roca de Poder Evangelical Church in Trial Farm, confessed that he took the photographs from the Mother and her two minor daughters. Today, our investigations led us to Oscar Barrera, president of the Pastor’s Association of Orange Walk. Barrera says that while the incident has tainted the image of the Evangelical Ministry, the self-proclaimed pastor is a false prophet.

 

OSCAR BARRERA – President, Pastor’s Association, OW


“It was a surprise because personally I don’t know this person until I saw it on the news, I never met this person and then as an Association we have had different activities and he has never come forward as a member or at least representing a congregation or a church until recently but when the news broke out yes I made some contacts and we made some investigations trying to contact some other Pastors that know him as an individual yes he has a credential or an ID and I understand it has expired as well, because people in our community tends to generalize the situation to say Pastor or Pastors or the Evangelical Churches on a whole but at the end of the day he is an individual and then in the Bible states that Elaisa was a man just like us and had temptation just like us but what happens that at the end of the day as I mentioned he will have to face his consequences as a human being as well.”

 

Maria Novelo – Reporter


“As an individual but a false prophet under your ministry”


OSCAR BARRERA – President, Pastor’s Association, OW


“Ok, the Bible states it and that does not change it now nor later and it is something that has been existing since the beginning that we have many wolves covered in sheep’s clothing.”

Barrera says, the incident while isolated, is a testament of the world’s reality today and that the problem has been one from the beginning of time.


OSCAR BARRERA – President, Pastor’s Association, OW


“We have a microwave system we want everything to be easy, quick fast and hurry and because of different denomination under the same Evangelical Churches different denomination in which to choose and as I mentioned before I don’t know him personally, I have never met him, until recently and it could be that he got his ID the same way just being named and not really ordained but as I mentioned I am not sure about that but it is just something that we believe that his ID was expired and he had services at his house and he has been having problems for a long time.  One of the problems is that at one point we tend to stop committing ourselves to God fully and we live our lives depending on ourselves and that is easier to fall into these things.”


Authorities believe that Lopez had a close relationship with the mother of the minors and it is through her that the children were introduced. Deputy Commanding the OW Police Formation, Inspector Selvin Tillett, says if the investigation proves otherwise and more charges will be laid.


INSP. SELVIN TILLETT – Deputy Commander, OW Police


“Allegations remain I cannot say that but what I have is what I will you the facts, well as you said not because one has been charged that does not mean the investigations stops rather it continues so if down the road if there is anybody else to be charge it can be charge.”


Barrera says as a community we can do more for our children.


OSCAR BARRERA – President, Pastor’s Association, OW


“I think the parents, since you mentioned Child Pornography, I think the parents as a whole needs to be careful as the Bible says we cannot trust even the person that sleeps beside us, talking about women we cannot even trust them it is biblical so we have to be very careful and we ne dot be monitoring our children and it is an example of what is happening out there, Pastors, Leaders, Priest they are not excluded from these things because they are humans and we can fall into these same things.”


On Friday a Human Development Officer accompanied the two minors at the police station. They were subsequently examined by a medical doctor to determine if they had been carnally known.  The medical examination proved that none of the female minors are carnally known. The act that Lopez is accused of, besides being an indictable offense, also goes contrary to section 7(1), 7(2), and 7(3) of the commercial sexual exploitation of children act of 2013,.  As a result, Edgar Gerardo Lopez was not offered bail, but remanded to prison and is to re-appear in court on June 29th, 2015.

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