Houston car dealership employee, associate arrested in sex assault case

June 20, 2013 10:00:00 PM PDT
A man seen in car commercials known as 'the Finnisher' is back in jail on new charges. He was originally arrested for sexually assaulting a 16-year-old girl at a car dealership and ordered to wear a GPS monitoring device after bonding out of jail.

One of the U.S. Marshals who arrested Rik Melartin described the man as surprised to see them. Both he and his assistant now face a total of 14 new felony charges.

Melartin was barefoot and disheveled and back in handcuffs Friday morning. He had appeared in commercials for John Keating Chevrolet, calling himself 'the Finnisher.' Now, he faces the beginning of a new legal battle.

He is facing seven new criminal charges just unsealed. The charges include compelling prostitution, sexual performance by a child, tampering with a witness and four counts of sexual assault of a child younger than 17.

"So you do know based on the fact that indictments are public record," said prosecutor Justin Keiter. "It is all based off of one other child under the age of 17 other than the one that they were initially charged with."

He'd been previously charged with a sexual assault at the Crosby car dealership last August, as was George Koutani, who also worked there. Both were released on bond until being re-arrested this morning.

Koutani was arrested at his west Houston home; Melartin was arrested where he lives in Kemah. The men were accused previously of giving an energy drink laced with alcohol to a 16-year-old girl, then touching her inappropriately.

Investigators said he paid the girl $500 after the incident.

Koutani also faces a laundry list of similar new charges, including sexual performance by a child, compelling prostitution, tampering with evidence, tampering with a witness and three counts of sexual assault of a child younger than 17.

All of the new charges stem from incidents dated October through December of last year.

"So they haven't done anything while out on bond," said Keiter.

Neither Melartin nor Koutani responded Friday when we asked them for comment. Both were held without bond.

Authorities say Koutani had drugs and a loaded gun on him when arrested Friday morning. He appeared in court overnight where he was also charged for possession of cocaine.

Melartin's attorney refused to comment on the new charges other than insisting his client is innocent.

No one from the dealership today returned our repeated calls.

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