A teenage girl is suing a former jiujitsu trainer and owner of a facility in Agoura Hills who she alleges sexually molested her when she was one of his students.
The girl is identified only as Jane Doe in the Los Angeles Superior Court lawsuit filed on her behalf by her guardian on Tuesday against 29-year-old Nicollas Welker Araujo, who owned the Overall Brazilian Jiujitsu Academy, which he opened in 2016 and has been closed, according to yelp.com. The business also is a defendant in the suit, which seeks unspecified compensatory and punitive damages.
No one answered at the phone number listed online as the business contact. A representative for Araujo could not be immediately reached.
The plaintiff, then 13, began attending Overall Brazilian for jiujitsu training in December 2016 and Araujo often coached the girl at Cobrinha, a jiujitsu studio affiliated with the academy, according to the suit.
That same month, Araujo began grooming Doe with the goal of “manipulating her emotions and taking advantage of her young age so that he could ultimately sexually abuse her,” the suit alleges.
Araujo began online adult-level conversations with Doe and gave her extra attention, the suit states. His first improper act was a kiss he gave the girl in February 2017 and that behavior progressed to unlawful sex acts that continued until October 2018, when Doe was 15 years old and for the first time had the mental strength to tell her family about the abuse, according to the suit.
Her relatives called law enforcement and Araujo was arrested in March 2019 and charged with felony counts that resulted in his being sentenced on Sept. 30 to three years in prison, according to the suit.
The suit alleges the academy “engaged in a concerted effort to hide evidence relating to childhood sexual assault, abuse and harassment perpetrated by Araujo against other minor children” before he allegedly abused the plaintiff.
“As a result of this coverup, plaintiff was sexually assaulted by Araujo,” the suit states.
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