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San Rafael swim coach accused of arranging meeting with juvenile for sex

SAN RAFAEL-- A San Rafael swimming coach was arrested Wednesday and charged with arranging a meeting with a juvenile for sex, police said Thursday.

San Rafael police said John Chipponeri, 59, was arrested after a sting operation earlier this month involving police placing ads on adult websites seeking buyers looking for juveniles for sexual services. Chipponeri is a swim coach at a local scholl and also teaches swimming for a private swim club.

The sting was part of a county-wide human trafficking operation seeking to arrest buyers and traffickers while rescuing victims of trafficking. According to police, detectives began communicating with a man who expressed interest in meeting up with a 16-year-old girl for sex. The subject agreed to a price along with a date and time to meet with the girl, but did not show up for the meeting, police said.

The phone used to communicate with police was determined to be registered to Chipponeri, police said. On Wednesday, officers conducted a traffic stop in the area of Lindaro St. and Anderson Dr. in San Rafael and detained Chipponeri. After he was taken to the police station for questioning, Chipponeri made several admissions regarding the case, police said.

Chipponeri was arrested for meeting with a minor for a lewd purpose and booked at the Marin County Jail.

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