Rape convictions against coach, minister upheld


MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) — The Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals has upheld the rape conviction of the minister of an independent church charged with raping a teenage girl.

The court on Friday upheld the rape conviction in Marengo County of Yahudah Israel. He was 51 at the time he was charged with raping a 16-year-old girl in 2010, according to court records. Israel was initially sentenced to 12 years in prison, but the appeals court sent the case back to lower court for a new sentencing. The appeals court said Israel was initially only sentenced on one charge of rape when he had been convicted of two counts.

The court also upheld the conviction and 12-year prison sentence of Cornelius Sinclair Surratt, an assistant high school basketball coach charged with raping a teenage girl.

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