SANTA ROSA (CBS SF) — A Santa Rosa man was sentenced to 30 years-to-life in prison Wednesday for molesting a number of young girls, many between the ages of five and eight years old.

Pablo Cardenas Estrada, 62, pleaded no contest in May to six charges of felony child molestation. The Sonoma County District Attorney’s Office said Estrada began molesting young children in the 1990s and was investigated beginning in 2017 when one of his victims – now an adult – reported the abuse she suffered to police.

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Detectives were able to find additional victims and Cardenas Estrada was arrested and charged. As part of his no contest pleas, Cardenas Estrada also admitted sentencing enhancements for molesting multiple victims, committing substantial sexual conduct with a child, and molesting a child that was a stranger.

“This prolific child molester has earned a life sentence in prison,” said District Attorney Jill Ravitch in a prepared statement. “Hopefully this outcome will help the victims to heal, and provide the community with a sense of safety from this predator.”

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Despite the life sentence, under current law Cardenas Estrada will be eligible for consideration of elder parole after serving 20 years of his sentence.

Several victim impact statements were read at the sentencing hearing Wednesday, outlining the fear, confusion, isolation, and continuing trauma Cardenas Estrada had caused, according to the press statement.

Before imposing the sentence, the judge told Cardenas Estrada the only thing he had done right was to enter a plea early in the criminal proceedings.

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