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Designer accused of rape lured aspiring models

FASHION designer Anand Jon Alexander raped and sexually assaulted aspiring models after luring them to Los Angeles with promises of glamorous photo shoots and stays in a luxury hotel, a court was told.

Deputy district attorney Mara McIlvain told jurors that Alexander had a “common plan” that started with finding the women on the internet and ended with him fondling or raping them in his apartment.

In one instance, he is accused of videotaping a 17-year-old girl as she disrobed at his urging and then touching her inappropriately as she bent over.

McIlvain suggested Alexander wanted to keep the tape as a souvenir.

“It’s for his personal sexual stimulation,” she said.

Alexander, 34, faces 25 counts including forcible rape and committing lewd acts on a child. The nine alleged victims were aged 14 to 21 and the alleged crimes occurred between 2001 and 2007.

Once considered an up-and-coming designer, Alexander appeared on TV’s America’s Next Top Model in 2003 and was profiled by Newsweek.

He has worked with celebrities including Paris Hilton and Mary J Blige.

Most of the prosecution’s case relies on testimony from women who made the accusations against Alexander.

If his accusers are to be believed, Alexander was shuttling girls and women in and out of his apartment on a frequent basis.

During the first week of March 2007, three of his accusers claim they were assaulted by Alexander, who was arrested later that month after one of the girls went to Beverly Hills police.

Defence lawyer Donald Marks questioned the victims’ credibility.

Marks and two of Alexander’s other lawyers will continue their closing arguments today.

Alexander is under indictment in New York on similar charges involving nine women.


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