Maralan pleads not guilty on all charges

Rug store manager's arraignment was Friday. He was rearrested Wednesday in connection to four new cases, including rape and attempted sexual assault, bringing the total to eight.

September 16, 2011|By Joanna Clay

The store manager of Sirous and Sons Rug Gallery in Laguna Beach pleaded not guilty on all counts in a Santa Ana courtroom on Friday. A pre-trial has been scheduled for Sept. 20.

Saeid Boustanabadi Maralan, 53, was first arrested on Sept. 1 for sexual assaulting three women and distributing pornography to a minor. He was rearrested Wednesday in connection with four new cases — which include rape, sexual battery by restraint, false imprisonment, penetration with a foreign object, attempted forcible oral copulation and a misdemeanor charge of indecent exposure — were filed Friday by the Orange County District Attorney.

Since his first arrest, four other women came forward claiming they were victimized by Maralan, and the incidents date back as far as 2007, years earlier than the original charges.

Lt. Kravetz said Maralan was arrested Wednesday specifically in connection with an April 2010 rape.

The 48-year-old woman allegedly had come to the store to consign rugs and was led to the back of the store where Maralan took off her clothing as she resisted. He reportedly digitally penetrated her and forcibly raped her as she attempted to escape, according to the D.A. He allegedly tried to orally copulate the woman after she refused to orally copulate him.


After news broke about the allegations against Maralan, she came forward.

According to the D.A, sometime between May and July 2007, Maralan allegedly grabbed the breasts of a 51-year-old woman when she came to discuss a financial issue. A few weeks later she came into the store and he allegedly pushed her against a wall and tried to kiss her. She was able to fight him off. She later came back again to talk about mail, and he allegedly said "Look what I have for you" and showed her his erect penis.

In December 2009, he is accused of bringing a 35-year-old woman into the back of the store after agreeing to discuss a consignment offer. He allegedly brought her back to his computer under the pretense that he was going to show her an image of a woman he knew. Instead, the victim alleges that Maralan showed her a pornographic website. Afterward, he is suspected of leading her to the back of the store and grabbing her breasts as she reached down to look at rugs, according to the D.A. He then reportedly kissed her on the head but she was able to get away.

She was encouraged to go to police after recent media reports.

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