NEWTON -- A special education consultant who was sentenced in September to 10 years in prison for sexually abusing eight children and submitting fraudulent insurance claims has had his professional licenses permanently revoked.
Troy Leonard, 31, of Franklin Lakes, consented to the revocation of his professional licenses in an order signed by him earlier this month. A copy of the revocation was recently released on the Division of Consumer Affairs' website.
Leonard advertised himself online as a life coach, a family counselor and an Applied Behavior Analysis therapist, but records with the Behavior Analyst Certification Board show he was not a credentialed behavior analyst. He was licensed as a marriage and family therapy counselor before the revocation.
Leonard pleaded guilty on May 10 to eight counts of second-degree sexual assault and one count of second-degree health care claims fraud, the Sussex County Prosecutor's Office previously said. Leonard, in his plea, admitted to having sexual contact with eight children under the age of 13 while he served as their behavioral therapist. Leonard also admitted to billing insurance companies for treatment he didn't provide.
Leonard, in a statement read by his attorney at his sentencing, reportedly said he was "a monster who took advantage (of these children) in their time of need," according to the New Jersey Herald. The abuse occurred multiple times between 2011 and 2015 in Wantage, West Milford, Ringwood, Lafayette and Verona.
Leonard received a five-year term for the multiple counts of sexual assault, and a five-year consecutive sentence for the health care fraud charge as part of the plea.
Assistant Prosecutor Seana Pappas told New Jersey Herald at the time Leonard faced a maximum term of 110 years in prison but he was offered significantly less time for reasons such as his cooperation with the investigation and for the sake of the victims.
"While the agreed upon sentence is less than what the defendant would be exposed to if he were found guilty of all counts after a trial, it is an appropriate recommended sentence upon admission of guilt so early in the judicial process," Pappas previously told NJ Advance Media.
Pappas has said Leonard was not accused of nor did he admit to penetrating the victims and that the prosecutor's office took into account "many factors" in its plea offer, "particularly the fact that the child victims will now not have to testify in any pre-trial hearings or a trial itself."
"This coupled with the defendant's admission of the acts he committed upon the minors and closure of the matter will help the children to heal," she has said.
CHILD RAPISTS 100 26 aprile 2017