A Caltrain conductor is accused of trying to solicit sexual favors from ticketless passengers — including a 16-year-old girl — in lieu of a citation.
Ricardo Arias Cano, 60, of South San Francisco, allegedly made the offer to the underage girl on Nov. 27 as she boarded a southbound train near Palo Alto, said Dave Triolo, head of transit police.
“He attempted to negotiate with her ... to receive sexual gratification of some sort,” Triolo said.
Cano has done something similar at least twice, also with an adult passenger, said Steve Fein, a deputy district attorney in Santa Clara County.
He was later arrested at his home on three felony charges, including two counts of false imprisonment by means of deceit. He was also slapped with two misdemeanor charges, including annoying or molesting a minor and soliciting to engage in lewd conduct, authorities said.
Cano posted a $65,000 bail and is currently out of custody, Triolo said.
More than a he-said, she-said case, Fein and Triolo said investigators have received ample information to arrest and prosecute Cano. They wouldn’t say who provided the information.
Cano has been placed on administrative leave and ordered by the court to stay off Caltrain property and away from the victims and minors.
He does not appear to have a criminal history, Triolo said.
If convicted, Cano likely won’t face prison but would be required to register as a sex offender, Fein said.
In his nine years policing Caltrain, Triolo said he has never heard of a conductor trying to shake down ticketless passengers.
On Caltrain, an engineer drives the train, while a conductor is responsible for the train’s operations, including fare collection. All conductors are Amtrak employees.
Nearly 37,000 passengers board the commuter rail system on weekdays, according to the transit agency.