Pastor Edwin Alvarez is charged with six counts of sexual touching and assault against children under the age of 16, New Westminster police announced Jan. 9. (Black Press Media file photo).

Pastor Edwin Alvarez is charged with six counts of sexual touching and assault against children under the age of 16, New Westminster police announced Jan. 9. (Black Press Media file photo).

Saanich man charged with sexually assaulting children while leading B.C. church

Pastor Edwin Alvarez was at Metro Vancouver church when alleged assaults occurred

A B.C. pastor is charged with sexually touching or assaulting children at a small Metro Vancouver church on at least six occasions.

Pastor Edwin Alvarez was arrested in Saanich on Jan. 4, where he now lives, after a close to year-long investigation into numerous allegations made against him.

The New Westminster Police Department says it and the Saanich Police Department looked into sexual offences reportedly committed by Alvarez spanning between 2017 and 2021. Since his Jan. 4 arrest, Alvarez has been charged with three counts of sexual interference against children under the age of 16, and three counts of sexual assault.

The New Westminster Police Department says each of the alleged offences occurred while Alvarez was a pastor at a small Metro Vancouver church. It declined a request to name that church.

The New West Police Department is encouraging anyone who has survived sexual assault to reach out to their local police department. If someone isn’t ready to go to police, they can contact the Emergency Sexual Assault Support Program at Cameray at 236-668-6687 or esas@cameray.ca.

READ ALSO: Former B.C. youth pastor guilty on one of five sexual assault allegations

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