Two Lyndhurst brothers in the U.S. illegally will spend little more than a year in prison for repeatedly sexually assaulting a young girl from age 5 to 12.
Superior Court Judge Edward A. Jerejian sentenced Mauro Cedeno-Blondet, 53, and Gustavo Cedeno-Blondet, 55, to three years in state prison each. But because they’ve been behind bars for 691 days, they get nearly two years of jail credit.
They will then be deported back to Ecuador.
The Cedeno-Blondets will serve their time in general population because neither qualifies for sex offender treatment at the Adult Diagnostic and Treatment Center in Avenel, the judge said.
“He didn’t contemplate that he was causing serious harm,” Mauro Cedeno-Blondet’s attorney, Diane D’Alessandro, told Jerejian.
However, Assistant Bergen County Prosecutor Maria Rockfol said the brother purposefully assaulted the girl for years, “taking her aside, fondling her breasts, touching her vagina, and having her touch his penis until he ejaculated.
“From the time this child was 5 until 12, during her most formative years, she was being sexually assaulted by men she knew and trusted,” Rockfol told the judge.
The family lives out of state now, and the young woman is in college where her father said she is “doing very well,” Rockfol said.
She read a letter to the judge in which the father said the family’s faith brought them through the experience and helped put it behind them.
“She has been able to find it in her heart to forgive them,” he added. “She believes in God, and thus has been able to find forgiveness in her heart.
“We have prayed for Gustavo and Mauro, and believe they have learned their lesson. We feel whatever the court decides would be a fair decision.”
Given the opportunity to speak, Mauro Cedeno-Blondet told Jerejian: “I want to thank you and also say I’m sorry to god and to American society. Thank you to this team of professionals that has helped us. If you could – please – give me time served.”
His brother said nothing.
Ironically, attorneys for the men had crafted a plea bargain that would have freed them at the beginning of December for time served.
But neither would admit their criminal acts during a plea hearing.
A trial date was set, and a plea deal was reached.
STORY / PHOTOS: Mary K. Miraglia, CLIFFVIEW PILOT Courthouse Reporter
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