Aspiring Models' Dreams Turn Into Nightmares

Autumn was the second girl to come forward and filed charges against Jon for sexual assault.

Over the next few months, dozens of models came forward -- all with similar stories.

Trial of Anand Jon

Jon's two-month trial began in September 2008. Model after model took the stand and broke down in tears -- each telling her own devastating and remarkably similar tale of being lured to Jon's studio apartment and within a short time, being assaulted.

Jon's defense claimed that the sex was consensual and driven by star-struck girls. Many of the alleged victims kept in touch with Jon after the alleged attacks. His team used many of the victim's own words and pictures against them, confronting some of the women with text messages and provocative poses sent to Jon before the alleged assaults.

Anand claimed that instead of a sexual predator, he was the victim of a sinister plot by disgruntled models -- fueled by jealousy and greed. The cornered fashion designer and his sister Sanjana Jon organized a cut-throat campaign against the models, painting them as escorts and drug-addicts.

"Even when they went home, and were hundreds and thousands of miles away, safe from any untold advances by him, they continued to communicate with him," said Leonard Levine, one of Jon's five-person defense team in the trial.

"There was one woman who was confronted with a phone bill in which she had text messaged Anand Jon I believe 58 times, in the hours or the day after her alleged assault," said Steven Mikulan, who covered the trial for LA Weekly.

The prosecution showed graphic video shot by Jon of a 17-year-old model being sexually assaulted on camera. Doctors who testified said that more than half of all sexual assault victims don't go to the police.

"The lure, the charm, the grooming -- whatever you want to call it -- is something that confuses them, and they don't report," said professor of psychiatric nursing Dr. Ann Burgess, who testified for the prosecution. "Many of them probably felt embarrassed, ashamed, how could this have happened, it's my fault."

Victims Confront Anand Jon

The doctor's words were echoed by the victims themselves. "At first, I thought that, that I should just, you know, let it go and maybe I will get something out of it. Like you know, bad things maybe turn out good," Autumn told "20/20."

According to Burgess, it's common for victims in multiple assault cases to remain silent until they hear that one victim has gone to police. In this case, she said, the nine victims in the case may never have come forward were it not for Jessie speaking out.

"Everybody's been questioning my character and, you know, my credibility; I was a rape victim, and something bad happened to me," Jessie said. "And I, not one, for not one minute was going to let this person take over my life and to try to prove me, like, try to prove me wrong. I didn't know that saving my own life was going to help so many other people."

At the time of the trial, Jon faced 25 criminal charges. In November 2008, the jury found Jon guilty of 14 felonies and two misdemeanors against seven of the nine women, including the forcible rape of Jessie, and multiple lewd acts upon a child for Autumn. He was acquitted on six counts and the jury deadlocked on three other charges.

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