Mennonite Pastor Sentenced for Helping Ex-Lesbian Woman Escape With her Daughter

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Lisa A. Miller and her daughter disappeared seven years ago and the two men who helped her flee have been arrested, convicted and punished for taking part in an international kidnapping that grabbed headlines across the nation.

The only defendant in the case who hasn’t been caught is Miller, who is believed to be living in Nicaragua with her now 14-year-old daughter, Isabella, after fleeing to keep the girl away from the same-sex partner Miller had separated from.

Timothy Miller – an Amish Mennonite missionary who is not related to Lisa Miller but who admitted helping her make her way to Nicaragua in 2009 – was sentenced Thursday to time served and a year of probation.

In sparing Miller more prison time, U.S. District Judge Richard J. Arcara pointed to the time he’s already spent in jail, as well as his early cooperation with federal investigators who continue to look for Lisa Miller.

“There has been so much collateral damage,” Arcara said of the men who helped Lisa Miller. “I see some basically wonderful people making some bad decisions and getting entangled in this mess.”

In asking for leniency, Timothy Miller’s lawyers pointed to the time he’s already spent in custody – 8 months, including several months in Nicaragua’s prisons.

“He’s done some real hard time,” said Jeffrey A. Conrad, a Lancaster, Pa., defense lawyer. “Nicaragua does its justice differently.”

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SOURCE: The Buffalo News – Phil Fairbanks