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June 8, 2013

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Police seek approval for teacher's arrest

POLICE have asked the Pudong District Prosecutors Office to approve the arrest of an American teacher over allegations he sexually assaulted children at a French school in Shanghai.

Police said the suspect, only identified by his surname of McMahon, was detained on May 13 after a student at the Lycee Francais de Shanghai had gone to a police station in Pudong with her mother on May 12. The girl accused McMahon, a 32-year-old English teacher, of sexually abusing her several times at the school since last September. She claimed McMahon also sexually harassed other students.

Police confirmed last night that six students at the school had filed accusations against the teacher. It is alleged that McMahon took the students separately to the school library or elsewhere in the name of checking their homework and then forced them to take off their clothes.

Five of the students, between 6 and 10 years old, are French and one is Italian. Two are boys.

The Shanghai Education Commission has asked the school to strengthen management of employees, assist police in their investigation and provide psychological counseling for students and parents.

A former teacher at the school, also an American, was extradited to the United States at the end of last year on similar charges.

The former teacher, said to be a friend of McMahon's, was extradited "following an investigation into sexual touching and violence against minors," the school said.

He left the French school in 2011 and it said his alleged actions took place during individual classes at a private home when he was no longer on its staff.

The private school, with about 1,600 pupils aged between three and 18, is part of an international network managed by the French government through the Agency for French Teaching Abroad.


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