South Florida

Lauderhill ‘Prophet' Pastor Accused of Sexually Abusing 13-Year-Old Girl, Practicing Voodoo

Ricardo Strachan, 40, was arrested Wednesday in Lauderhill on a charge of lewd and lascivious battery

A South Florida pastor accused of repeatedly sexually abusing a 13-year-old girl and having her steal items for Voodoo rituals has been arrested, authorities said.

Ricardo Strachan, 40, was arrested Wednesday in Lauderhill on a charge of lewd and lascivious battery on a person between 12 and 16, according to an arrest report.

Strachan, who had been a pastor at Prophetic Worshipers International Church, began having sex with the girl around January 2016, when he was 38 years old, the report said.

Police said Strachan was introduced to the girl through her by another man, who is also accused of abusing the teen. The man, Avo Avard Roker, 32, allegedly sexually assaulted the girl from December 2015 through November 2016. During that time, he introduced Strachan to the girl, police said.

Strachan also had sex with the girl about 10 times in his car in the parking lot of Dillard High School in Fort Lauderdale during school hours, the report said. They also engaged in sex acts at a local hotel, the report said.

The victim told police she kept the sexual abuse a secret because she was afraid Strachan would "do harm to her family," the report said. She told investigators Strachan practiced Voodoo and had her steal property from her family members to give to him to "perform rituals," the report said.

The girl told police that Strachan told her he was married to a police officer and had access to a gun, the report said.

Strachan's attorney said he completely denies the allegations. The attorney said Strachan was expected to post bond later Friday and be released.

"He completely denies them and he's looking forward to his day in court," Lawrence Hashish said.

Videos posted on YouTube refer to Strachan as a "prophet" and feature him giving sermons and preaching about the Bible. The church's Facebook page wasn't available Friday afternoon.

Strachan was booked into the Broward jail, where he was being held on $100,000 bond Friday, records showed.

UPDATE: Roker was arrested on Saturday.

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