Police Stop Man from Raping Girl a 3rd Time: Officials

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A New York City man is in custody after Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, police thwarted his plan to meet and rape an 11-year-old girl for the third time in Lehigh Valley, according to investigators.

Sandro Zhinin was arrested in Hanover Township Saturday. Police say they received a tip that the 33-year-old was traveling to Pennsylvania Saturday to meet the child before taking her to a hotel. Investigators then set up surveillance at the playground and Zhinin was taken into custody once he arrived, police said.

According to police, Zhinin had executed this plan twice before.

Police say that after Zhinin connected with the girl online, he met her at a playground on March 4, drove her to a hotel and sexually assaulted her. He then sexually assaulted her again one week later on March 11, police said.

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Zhinin is being held on $500,000 bond. He will be charged with rape of a child, statutory sexual assault, unlawful contact with a minor, corruption of a minor, and criminal use of a cellphone, according to state police.

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