Canada
Teacher acquitted of sex charges involving Grade 3 girls

Credits: REUTERS/Jean-Paul Pelissier

QMI AGENCY

VANCOUVER -- A former Coquitlam, BC, substitute teacher who had faced five counts of sexual interference with a minor after sitting elementary school students on his lap, has been acquitted of all charges by a BC provincial court judge.

Aleksandr Plehanov, in his late 30s, taught a Grade 3 class between January 2007 and March 2010.

He faced 11 charges, including sexual assault and criminal harassment, after several girls went to police with allegations two years ago.

"I know there are going to be some people very displeased with the verdict," defence lawyer Lisa Jean Helps said outside court. "The justice system worked within the parameters set out by law and my client is very relieved with the decision."

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