A 36-year-old imam has been charged with indecent liberties by custodian for a sexual assault that occurred in 2015, Fairfax County police said.

Detectives began their investigation in May after a victim disclosed unlawful sexual contact with the imam. Detectives determined Said Shirzadi, of Maryland, served as a counselor and spiritual leader at the Mustafa Center, 6844 Braddock Road, Annandale, at the time of the assault, the release said.

The juvenile victim sought Shirzadi’s assistance in his position in the mosque, police said in the release.

"Shirzadi would meet the victim at locations throughout the county. He would invite the victim into his vehicle, where he would then sexually assault her," the release said.

After an investigation that included multiple interviews and reviewing digital evidence, detectives obtained a warrant for indecent liberties by a custodian, and Shirzadi was arrested Tuesday, the release said. He was released on his personal recognizance from the Adult Detention Center.

Shirzadi has served as an imam at the mosque for the past nine years. Detectives are asking anyone with information about this case or believe Shirzadi had inappropriate contact with them or their child to please call our Major Crimes Bureau at 703-246-7800, option 3.

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(2) comments

J Jonah Jameson

To all my Christian friends letting this affect your view of the Muslim community, please keep in mind the thousands upon thousands of similar cases still being swept under the rug within your own community. Remove the plank from your own eye before you try to remove a speck from your brother's.

Carlton Hendricks

Kinda odd to immediately defend your religion before condemning the acts. In fact, the crimes committed literally have nothing to do with religion. A juvenile was sexually assaulted and all you care about is damage control of your faith's image. You think the victim gives a damn about how this affects you? How about you remove the plank from your eyes and think before you say something insensitive.

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