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Kung fu instructor could face life in prison
April 20, 2012, 05:00 AM By Michelle Durand Daily Journal Staff

Meng Ricky Wong

A San Mateo kung fu instructor accused of inappropriately touching two young female students pleaded not guilty yesterday to molestation charges that could send him to prison for life if convicted of abusing multiple victims.

Meng Ricky Wong, 36, of Redwood City, appeared in San Mateo County Superior Court without an attorney and pleaded not guilty to four counts of lewd acts on a child under 14 and the allegation he committed crimes against more than one alleged victim.

At his arraignment, Wong, who posted a $100,000 bail bond one day after his March 15 arrest, also told the court he could not afford an attorney and asked that one be appointed for him.

Wong worked at Tat Wong Kung Fu on 43rd Avenue in San Mateo between 1999 and 2011. Prosecutors say he fondled two girls, ages 9 and 11, at different times between August 2010 and October 2011. The girls do not know each other but are very similar in age and appearance, according to San Mateo police.

In the first instance, Wong allegedly took the girl upstairs at the studio and touched her breasts and buttocks. The girl reported the incident but the lack of corroboration led to no prosecution. In October 2011, the second girl reported an identical touching incident upstairs at the studio.

Wong returns to court June 19 for a preliminary hearing.

If convicted, Wong faces life in prison under the state’s one-strike rule for molestation involving multiple victims.

Wong is free from custody.

Michelle Durand can be reached by email: michelle@smdailyjournal.com or by phone: (650) 344-5200 ext. 102.

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