JAPANESE TOURIST VICTIM OF RAPE IN GUAM

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19 year old male held on $10,000 cash bail

By Geraldine Castillo HAGÅTÑA, Guam (Marianas Variety, Dec. 23, 2011) – In Guam, a 19-year-old male has been arrested for the alleged rape of a Japanese tourist early last month.

Johnathan James Acfalle Perez is being held on US$10,000 cash bail. He is accused of raping a tourist he invited to go out with him on or about Nov. 2, leaving the victim with severe pain and injuries which a doctor described as "the worst she had seen."

Perez was charged yesterday in Superior Court with first degree criminal sexual conduct as a first degree felony; and third degree criminal sexual conduct as a second degree felony. Court spokesperson Joshua Tenorio confirmed the bail amount.

The victim, a 24-year-old female, was on vacation from Japan, staying at the Onward Beach Resort. The incident occurred on the night she met Perez who was working as a deck hand aboard the Big Tours Sunset Barbeque Cruise, according to Superior Court of Guam documents.

During the cruise, the victim and a friend she traveled with were invited to go out later with Perez and another male individual identified only as "Johnny" in court documents.

Later in the evening, Perez drove with the victim to the parking lot of the Santa Fe Hotel and both walked to the beach. Perez then allegedly pushed the victim to the ground and forced himself upon her.

"The victim attempted to push [Perez] off of her but he was too heavy," court documents stated.

Shortly after the alleged rape, Perez dropped the victim back to her hotel. She then informed her friend of what had occurred and they immediately contacted hotel security.

The victim was taken to the Healing Hearts Crisis Center where she was examined by Dr. Ellen Bez. The victim suffered from severe pains and sustained a number of injuries.

"Dr. Bez stated the [victim’s] injury was the worst she had seen in her 20 years of experience," court documents stated. "Dr. Bez stated the [victim’s] injuries were evidence of forced sexual contact."

The Baldyga Group, which operates the Big Tours Sunset Barbecue Cruise, contacted the Variety yesterday. President and CEO Mark Baldyga stated Perez is not an employee of his company but likely worked for Margarita Charters, the vessel chartered by the company.

Although no comment was provided by Margarita Charters, Baldyga stated Perez was no longer with that company.

Meanwhile, concerned that the crime might create a stigma for the island, the Guam Visitors Bureau (GVB) has assured the safety of tourists remains a top priority as they continue to work with local law enforcement and industry leaders.

"The safety of our visitors and community will always be a top priority for GVB. It is inexcusable for one of our visitors to be put through an ordeal like this. We pray that the victim has healed and recovered," GVB General Manager Joann Camacho stated.

She added, "Like every destination throughout the world, Guam is not immune to these acts of aggression. We will continue doing everything we can to minimize these acts by working with the Guam Police Department and our industry partners."

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