Frank John Selas III, former star of children’s television show Mr. Wonder, has been arrested on charges of sexual battery, indecent behavior with a juvenile, and child molestation. According to The Town Talk, Selas had been wanted in Rapides Parish for about 37 years after he was accused of sexually abusing young boys. Read on for the details on the arrest and Selas’ wife Maria Magdalena Aranda Selas Szeles.
1. Maria Magdalena Aranda Selas Szeles Was Reported to Be “Very Evasive” With Police
In June 1979, in Rapides Parish, children told their parents that Selas allegedly had sexually abused them during a trip to Valentine Lake. According to The Town Talk, parents contacted the police, and an investigation ensued. Then, Sheriff William Earl Hilton and his partner at the time went to arrest Selas with warrants in their possession, he was nowhere to be found. And, Hilton said that his wife was very evasive. Hilton stated that, “She didn’t tell us anything and would not tell us anything.”
2. Selas “Slipped Out of the U.S.” in 1979
When he was first subject to arrest, Sela was reported to have fled the United States. Selas’ car was found in Dallas, and he was then traced to Rio de Janeiro in Brazil before dropping off the radar of police. Rapides Parish District Attorney Phillip Terrell stated at a press conference that, since Selas left the country to avoid prosecution, the statute of limitations would not apply to the original charges.
In addition to offering free camps for kids, Selas was a Boy Scout leader, a Sunday school teacher and swim instructor. Police believe Selas never stopped molesting boys.
3. Wife Maria Was Working at an Elementary School
Selas was picked up by police at his Bonita, California home where he had been living with his wife. The Town Talk reports that the couple had returned to America in the early 1980s. He lived in areas all over the country. Investigators said that some of the locations included Darien, Connecticut (which is his hometown); South Royalton, Vermont; Chicago; San Diego; Sheffield, Massachusetts; and Bonita.
Wife Maria was working at an exclusive elementary school called Francis Parker, but her employee bio page has been removed from the school’s site according to a source. You can view Maria’s LinkedIn profile by clicking here.
4. Selas And His Wife Had Altered Their Names on Their Passports Over the Years
Both Selas and his wife altered their last names sinces the warrants were first issued for Selas’ arrest. They were using “Szeles” on their passports and other documents. In 1992, Selas legally changed his last name to Szeles in San Diego County, as reported by the sheriff’s office. San Diego jail records refer to him as Frank Selas.
Their son is reported by a source to be Sean Szeles, a writer and director. You can view his IMDb page by clicking here.
5. His Wife May Face Charges As Well
Sheriff William Earl Hilton has said that it is uncertain if Maria Selas will face charges as well. She traveled away from the country with her husband when he was wanted by police and it remains undetermined if she knew about any of the sex crimes.