WAILUKU - A 31-year-old man is being held in lieu of $560,000 bail after being indicted on charges alleging he sexually assaulted two boys.
Zack Morris, who was arrested in October on Kauai, has pleaded not guilty to continuous sexual assault of a minor, nine counts of third-degree sexual assault, three counts of first-degree sexual assault, five counts of attempted first-degree sexual assault and two counts of felony abuse.
The charges stem from incidents occurring from September 2010 to August 2011, while Morris was living on Maui, according to court records. One boy was under age 14 and living in the same home as Morris from July to August, records indicate, and the other was a teenager under age 16. In addition to allegations that he sexually assaulted both boys, Morris is charged with abuse by strangulation of the older boy.
A Jan. 9 trial is set in 2nd Circuit Court for Morris, who is also known as Florentino Rios.
During a hearing Oct. 28, Judge Rhonda Loo kept bail for Morris at $560,000 and ordered that he have no contact with a counselor who was treating the victims in the case.
Deputy Prosecutor Simone Polak said the counselor was concerned because of indirect threats to a pet cat she uses for therapy that Morris was trying to catch. Polak said Morris had reported not having a passport, although she learned he had used a U.S. passport to travel to Ukraine and Panama, "places well known for sex tourism."
Deputy Public Defender William "Pili" McGrath said: "It's a stretch that the only reason people go to Panama and Ukraine is for sex tourism."
To be released pending trial, Morris would have to post his bail in cash, under a court order.
According to court records, Morris was born in New York and moved to Maui in 2008. He had been living in Hana before moving to Kauai with his wife and two children about one month before his arrest.