Child molester preacher rejects plea deal in second sex crime case

By Michaelangelo Conte, May 02, 2017, The Jersey Journal

A North Hudson preacher and self-proclaimed exorcist who was convicted of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old boy rejected a plea deal yesterday on another sex crime charge.

But first Gregorio Martinez, who was on the lam for 18 months after his February 2015 conviction, had some grievances to air with Hudson County Superior Court Judge Mitzy Galis-Menendez.

"I'm not guilty of anything," Martinez, 49, the former North Bergen pastor, told the judge.

Martinez also complained at the hearing that when he is brought to court for a hearing, prisoners in other holding cells spit at him while he waits in his cell.
"When they are leaving they spit at my face and they spit at my chest," Martinez said through a Spanish translator. Galis-Menendez called the spitting inappropriate and said she would alert the sheriff's officers who handle the prisoners.

Martinez, who is accused of sexually assaulting at least two others, was offered a 10-year sentence for pleading guilty to sexual assault of a now-19-year-old man back in 2009. Authorities have said the incidents took place at church events, including prayer services.

Hudson County Assistant Prosecutor Linda Claude-Oben said the sentence would run concurrent to the other sentences he faces.

The trial is set for July 25, just more than a month after his sentencing date for sexually assaulting the 13-year-old.

Martinez, who was represented by attorney Scott Finckenauer, faces additional sex charges and bail jumping charges.

On Feb. 25, 2015, Martinez, who described himself as a prophet and exorcist who could speak in tongues, was found guilty of touching the 13-year-old's genital area and kissing him on the lips inside a minivan on June 10, 2012.

Martinez was out on bail at the time of his conviction and remained free pending sentencing. When sentencing day rolled around, he was nowhere to be found.

U.S. Marshals and FBI agents joined the search for Martinez and in August of last year, he was detained in Honduras and returned to the United States, officials said.

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