Man gets 18 months in prison for molesting gymnastics students

Leonardo Suarez Alvarez, 53, to be deported to Ecuador after prison term

By Amanda Batchelor - Senior Digital Editor

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. - A 53-year-old man was sentenced last week to 18 months in Florida state prison followed by five years of sex offender probation for molesting five children who attended his twin sisters' gymnastics center in Coral Springs, a spokeswoman for the Broward County State Attorney's Office confirmed Monday.

Leonardo Suarez Alvarez, of Ecuador, received his sentence Thursday after pleading guilty to five counts of lewd and lascivious molestation on a victim under 12. 

Suarez Alvarez will be a registered sex offender and sexual predator and is expected to be deported to Ecuador once his prison sentence is complete, the spokeswoman said.

According to an arrest report, police were notified in September 2018 that Suarez Alvarez had been inappropriately touching students at Twins Gymnastics in Coral Springs.

Police said officers separated the parents and children before interviewing the victims about the accusations against Suarez Alvarez.

According to the arrest report, all five of the victims, who at the time ranged in age from 7 to 10, told detectives similar stories about how Suarez Alvarez had touched their breasts over their clothing.

One of the 10-year-old girls told detectives she reported the incidents to "Ms. Maria," one of the owners, and Maria told her she would tell her brother to stop.

But the girl said Suarez Alvarez continued to touch her inappropriately and she witnessed him inappropriately touching other girls, as well.

According to the gymnastics center website, the business is owned by twin sisters Maria Elena and Maria del Carmen Suarez.

Police said Suarez Alvarez was a volunteer at the center.

Suarez Alvarez had been held without bail at the Paul Rein Detention Facility since his arrest.

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