In a news conference Wednesday, La Luz Del Mundo officials said they stand behind their leader, who is being held without bail on charges of child rape and human trafficking.
Naasón Joaquín García was ordered held without bail Tuesday after a historically high $50 million bail was set earlier in the case, the Associated Press reported. García’s attorneys said they plan to appeal the decision, and said it “does not imply guilt,” according to news release from the church.
García and two other co-defendants pleaded not guilty to sexually abusing three girls and a woman in Los Angeles County. The victims were allegedly told they would be going against God if they didn’t acquiesce to García, according to AP.
“The Light of the World Church stands firm and united during these attacks of intolerance, discrimination, and slander; we trust in God and we reiterate the innocence of the Apostle of Jesus Christ, HIS DEFENSE CONTINUES, AND NOW WITH MORE STRENGTH,” the church’s news release read.
The church officials called the case “fabricated” and said members have confidence in García’s integrity.