SHIZUOKA (Kyodo) Midfielder Naoya Kikuchi of the Jubilo Iwata soccer team was arrested Wednesday on suspicion of having sex with a 15-year-old high school student last month even though he knew she was a minor, police said.

Kikuchi, 22, who participated in the 2004 Athens Olympics as a member of Japan’s national team, owned up to the allegation, police said, quoting him as saying, “I picked her up because she was pretty.”

Police said Kikuchi, a regular midfielder with the J. League club based in Shizuoka Prefecture, had sex with the girl in a parked car in Hamamatsu in late May. She was bicycling home from school at the time, police said.

Kikuchi left 10,000 yen for her, but he forgot his wallet with his driver’s license in the basket of her bicycle. The student brought the wallet and 10,000 yen to police that night.

The girl was unaware that he was a Jubilo player, police said.

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