IRVINE (AP) — Police say the publisher of a Southern California Persian community magazine is suspected of extorting the family of a Laguna Beach rug store owner charged with sexual assault.
The Los Angeles Times says 70-year-old Javad Mostafavi was arrested last week. The family of Saeid Boustanabadi Maralan alleged Mostafavi threatened to publish Maralan’s mug shot on the cover of his magazine if he wasn’t paid $3,000.
Maralan is charged with assaulting 11 women while working at a Laguna Beach rug store. He is being held on $1.5 million bail and faces a maximum of 60 years to life in prison if convicted.
Police say Mostafavi emailed the accused molester’s family a mock-up of the magazine with Maralan’s mugshot on the cover.
Mostafavi’s monthly Payam-e-Ashena has been published since 1989.