As any Facebook member knows, friend requests from long-lost acquaintances roll in all the time, but the one an Orange County woman in her 30s received in January 2011 really stood out.
It was from a man who is alleged to have regularly flown across the country to rape her beginning when she was 12 years old.
When Vanna Hong, 44, of Boston, Mass., stepped off a plane at Los Angeles International Airport on Friday, he believed he was about to meet the woman to re-start their relationship, according to a statement from the Orange County District Attorney's office (OCDA).
Instead, Hong found himself in the waiting arms of law enforcement officers. He was being held in lieu of $1 million bail pending a scheduled arraignment hearing today.
The OCDA alleges the creepy relationship began in January 1995, when Hong was 28. He met the then-12-year-old on a visit to Orange County from Rhode Island, and he would allegedly go on to make several trips back to sexually assault the girl that year.
Hong is further accused of:
- Having unlawful sexual intercourse with the girl in a Garden Grove motel between January-February 1995;
- Engaging in unlawful sexual intercourse, oral copulation and digital penetration with the girl at The Alamo Inn in Anaheim several times between March 1, 1995, and Feb. 29, 1996;
- Forcibly raping the girl between March 1-Sept. 30, 1996.
Now a grown woman married to a law enforcement officer, the victim did not report the sexual assaults for months after Hong is accused of contacting her on Facebook at the beginning of last year. He is accused of wanting to visit and continue their sexual relationship, despite knowing the woman is married.
The woman contacted law enforcement on Aug. 17, 2011, about the sexual assaults she claims took place when she was a child. An investigation was launched that culminated in Hong's arrest at LAX last week.
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The OCDA explains how he could face charges so many years after the reported crimes: "The People are able to file this case beyond the statute of limitations based on clear and convincing admissible evidence that corroborates the victim's allegations."
Hong is charged with three felony counts of lewd acts upon a child under 14, one felony count of continuous sexual abuse, and one felony count of aggravated sexual assault of a child, with sentencing enhancement allegations for substantial sexual assault of a child.
Conviction could send Hong to state prison for 15 years to life.