Muhammad Sayyidel, convicted a month ago by a Santa Barbara jury of an attempted lewd act upon a child and annoying or molesting a child under 18, was sentenced Thursday morning to 41 years to life in prison, the maximum possible sentence he faced.

Muhammad Sayyidel

The conviction was the third strike for Sayyidel, who will also have to register as a sex offender. Sayyidel is 51, meaning the earliest he could be released from prison would be age 92. Judge Jean Dandona, prior to the sentencing, heard from the victim and her father, who asked for the maximum sentence.

Sayyidel was arrested after an incident at Mission and De la Vina streets in September 2009, when he asked a 13-year-old to perform sex acts on him.

According to Senior Deputy District Attorney Paula Waldman, who prosecuted Sayyidel, the Probation Department predicted he was a high risk to re-offend. She called him a “disturbed and highly sexualized individual that is completely incapable of living within society’s rules of decency.”

“I believe that the defendant is a sexual predator who must be kept off the streets and locked up for life to keep our children, women, and men safe from his perverse sexual acts of aggressiveness,” Waldman said in an email Thursday. “Today justice was served and a convicted child molester will be forever off the streets.”


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