A pastor of a small Santeria congregation in his Medford home has been convicted of sexually abusing two teenage brothers.
A Suffolk County jury found Miguel Leon guilty Friday of 37 counts, including criminal sex acts and endangering the welfare of a child.
Prosecutors said Leon told the brothers, 14 and 16, that by performing sex acts with him, they would acquire spiritual energy, power, and a higher level of enlightenment. The victims were abused from December 2008 to July 2009.
The 53-year-old man had led a group that practices Lucumi Yoruba, which prosecutors describe as a Santeria religion based on Christianity and West African spiritual beliefs.
Leon’s attorney said he will appeal and added that Leon still maintains his innocence.
He faces up to 20 years in prison when he is sentenced March 1.
-With Associated Press