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Dentist charged with assault

October 24, 2008|Stuart Pfeifer

Orange County sheriff's deputies have arrested a San Juan Capistrano dentist on suspicion of sexually assaulting a patient, a sheriff's spokesman said Thursday.

Ghassan Mehtar was accused of assaulting a 26-year-old woman while treating her in his office, said sheriff's spokesman Jim Amormino.

The woman told authorities that Mehtar pulled up her clothing to expose her breasts and fondled her as she sat in a dentist's chair. She was alert and not under anesthesia, Amormino said.

Employees told investigators that other patients -- primarily Latinas who spoke little English -- had complained that Mehtar abused them as well. Those patients have not filed complaints with deputies, Amormino said. Amormino encouraged other victims to contact authorities. He said sheriff's investigators had no intention of inquiring about victims' immigration status.

Mehtar was being held in lieu of $25,000 bail.

He has practiced dentistry in California since 1997, according to Dental Board of California records.

-- Stuart Pfeifer

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