Music program founder charged with lewd acts against girls

April 18, 2019 - 10:59 pm

SANTA ANA, Calif. (AP) — The founder of a nonprofit group investigated over allegations it gave flutes possibly tainted with semen to schoolchildren has been charged with committing lewd acts against girls.

The California attorney general's office announced Thursday that John Zeretzke was indicted last month on charges involving five young girls in Orange and Los Angeles counties. He was recently arrested.

The Orange County Register says he's pleaded not guilty.

The indictment contains few details. The attorney general's office declined to state whether the charges involve the flute allegations. It did say Zeretzke is not accused of personally having physical contact with the girls.

He's also facing unrelated federal child exploitation charges.

Zeretzke founded Flutes Across the World, which worked with many schools. In 2017, California began investigating allegations that he distributed tainted flutes.

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