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Hollywood talent manager charged with molesting young client

December 1, 2011 |  3:37 pm

Prosecutors charged a veteran children’s talent manager with eight felonies Thursday related to the alleged sexual abuse of a young client.

Martin Weiss, 47, faces 34 years in prison if convicted of sodomy, lewd acts and other charges filed by a Los Angeles County district attorney’s office, prosecutors said.

Weiss, whose Santa Monica-based management company specialized in young performers, pleaded not guilty to the charges in Superior Court in Van Nuys on Thursday afternoon. He is being held on $800,000 bail.

The charges concern an 18-year-old aspiring musician who recently told police that Weiss molested him for a three-year period beginning when he was 11. The teenager went to police earlier this month accompanied by his parents and armed with a recent recording in which Weiss acknowledged sexual contact with him when he was a boy, according to a search warrant affidavit filed Wednesday.

During that Nov. 15 conversation, Weiss claimed the boy invited the sex and “claimed the Penn State situation was different because ‘those kids didn’t want it,’ ” the affidavit states.

The victim told detectives he suspected Weiss abused other young men, including some he saw spend the night at Weiss’ apartment, according to the affidavit. Weiss was arrested Tuesday.

Investigators believe that prior to opening his management company 14 years ago, Weiss worked as a costumed performer at children’s birthday parties. Police “are requesting anyone else who may have been assaulted by Weiss to come forward,” the LAPD said in a statement.

The case is being investigated by the department’s Topanga sex crimes unit.


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--Harriet Ryan