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Head Of Modeling School To Appear In Court For Alleged Sex Abuse

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LOS ANGELES (CBS) — A man who runs a school for acting and modeling is set to appear in court next week on charges he sexually abused a 16-year-old girl, authorities announced.

Yoshitomo Kaneda, 45, is charged with misdemeanor counts of child molestation, sexual battery, sexual penetration by a foreign object, false imprisonment and dissuading a witness. A pretrial hearing is scheduled for Thursday, according to the City Attorney’s Office.

“No business, including the entertainment business, can tolerate persons who prey upon vulnerable and trusting clients,” City Attorney Carmen A. Trutanich said. “Talent agents, actors and others, who violate that trust and engage in such egregious acts, will be prosecuted to the utmost.”

Kaneda allegedly sexually abused the teen on Feb. 22 after taking her to his apartment, purportedly to teach her Japanese, Deputy City Attorney Lara D. Schwartz said.

The girl, who was attending Kaneda’s acting/modeling school, was allegedly given a massage and sexually molested. Afterward, Kaneda left several incriminating voice messages with both the mother and manager of the victim, Schwartz alleged.

If convicted, Kaneda could face up to two years in jail.

(©2012 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

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