Man accused of three sexual assaults in court

A former Ladera Ranch man accused of sexually assaulting three Southern California women before fleeing abroad is scheduled to stand trial Thursday.

Ali Achekzai, 33, was on the Orange County district attorney's Most Wanted List until his capture in Austria in 2010, according to a news release from the D.A.'s office.

Achekzai is facing six felony charges, including forcible rape, sexual penetration by foreign object by force and aggravated assault, as well as sentencing enhancements for allegedly committing sexual crimes against multiple victims, according to the release.

He is accused of assaults in Costa Mesa and Laguna Beach, and San Diego County against women between the ages of 21 and 24, according to the D.A.'s office.

In one instance, Achekzai is accused of repeatedly punching a woman and threatening to kill her if she screamed.

Prosecutors also claim Achekzai lured one woman to his car under the pretense of warning her about another man at a nightclub. The victim became scared and tried to run, but Achekzai chased her and led her to her car where he assaulted her, prosecutors said.

If convicted, Achekzai could serve 68 years and four months in state prison.

— Lauren Williams

Twitter: @lawilliams30

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