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OKINAWA CITY – A 42-year-old Filipino was in Okinawa police custody Monday for allegedly molesting a 12-year-old boy at Lester Middle School in February, a spokesman for Okinawa prefectural police said Monday.

Reynaldo Saurin Silva, a construction worker from Ginowan, is suspected of touching the student’s groin the morning of Feb. 12 in a school restroom, according to the police report. Two other students allegedly witnessed the incident.

Silva, in Japan on a permanent residence visa, denied the allegation, telling investigators that he had only attempted to exchange a "high five" with the student, police said.

A teacher reported the incident after asking the boy why he seemed so upset after returning from the restroom, police said. Military police investigated the case, which recently was handed over to Okinawa police jurisdiction because Silva was not covered by the U.S.-Japan Status of Forces Agreement.

Okinawa police said they arrested Silva on Friday night at his home after their own investigation and on Sunday referred the case to the Naha District Public Prosecutor’s Office.

Silva worked for a Japanese company that provides custodian service to the school.

He was removed from the school and fired when the alleged crime was reported, officials said.

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