A Bucks County man accused of sexually assaulting a teenager whose parents allegedly "gifted" her to him when she was 14 faces more sex abuse charges in the case where 12 girls were found living in the man's home in Feasterville, Pennsylvania.
District Attorney Matthew Weintraub announced Monday morning that Lee Kaplan, who he called a "cult-like figure," also sexually assaulted five of the teen's younger sisters. The teen, who is now 18, told police Kaplan considered her and her sisters to be his wives, and he told them it was what God wanted.
"He groomed them to make them believe he was a religious cult-like figure to whom they should submit their will," Weintraub said.
The latest victims include a girl authorities said was sexually assaulted from ages 14 to 17, a girl raped from ages 11 to 15, a girl raped between ages 10 to 13, a girl indecently assaulted between ages 6 to 10, and one sexually abused at 8 years old, prosecutors said.
Weintraub said they had "credible evidence" to prove the new charges.
Kaplan has remained behind bars on $1 million bail awaiting trial on statutory sexual assault, indecent assault and corruption of minors charges since his June arrest. That bail amount was increased another $1 million Monday.
Officials in Bucks County acting on a neighbor's tip on June 20 found Kaplan at his Feasterville home, along with the 12 girls, authorities have said. It was at that time the initial victim told police she and Kaplan had two children, according to investigators. Kaplan turns 52 next week.
"He raped (a girl) who gave birth to two of his children as a result," Weintraub said at Monday's news conference.
Authorities also charged a man and woman who told police they are the parents of 10 children found in the house, including the teenager who gave birth to Kaplan's two daughters.
The parents are charged with child endangerment. Police said they "gave" their 14-year-old daughter to Kaplan several years ago after he helped the couple, financially.
Kaplan's attorney, Ryan Hyde, said he hasn't seen the new charges and can't comment.
Kaplan and the girls' parents were supposed to go on trial next week, but the proceedings were canceled, according to court records. Some charges in the case were previously withdrawn in August.
Weintraub didn't know exactly how many years in prison Kaplan could now face if found guilty. But he said it should be what amounts to a life sentence.
"If we're successful, he's going to spend the rest of his life where he is right now ... in prison," Weintraub said.
Kaplan grew up in Cheltenham, graduating from the township's high school in 1982. He also owned a few properties in the area in the 1990s, including a large house in the Melrose Park neighborhood that he rented to college students.
A FedEx deliveryman told NBC10.com that he often made dropoffs and pickups at Kaplan's Feasterville home. Kaplan operated a model train business out of his home, according to corporate records. The deliveryman said he had no idea 12 children lived with Kaplan, but said the house "stunk" and that the homeowner often answered the door shirtless.
Weintraub said that they hoped to eventually sell the house — which remained part of the investigation — and use the money for victim services.