A 42-year-old man was sentenced Friday in a San Francisco courtroom to 202 years to life in prison for molesting two underage family members.
Following a three-month trial, San Francisco resident Jose Melara was found guilty of intercourse, sodomy, oral copulation and molestation involving two girls who were both 4 years old at the time of the molestations, according to prosecutors.
In addition to the prison sentence, Melara must also pay restitution to the two victims, totaling $1,027,129 for each victim, prosecutors said.
During the trial, one of the victims, a niece of Melara, said the molestation lasted for five years and included oral copulation, intercourse and sodomy.
The victim, now an 11-year-old, said the molestation began the very first day Melara moved into the family’s San Francisco home.
After dropping off his wife, his children and the victim’s other siblings at their school, Melara would drive the girl a short distance to commit sexual acts inside his van, before bringing her back to school, according to prosecutors.
The victim didn’t tell anyone in her family about the molestation until the summer of 2013.
Melara also molested a cousin of his, who was also 4 years old when the molestation began.
Prosecutors said Melara would show the girl pornographic films before committing sexual acts on her. At one point, the victim’s mother caught Melara assaulting her daughter.
District Attorney George Gascon said in a statement:
“The fear and trauma these children endured is impossible to quantify. … These children demonstrated an immense amount of strength to come forward, and we will continue to assist them as they focus on recovering.”