Criminal Justice

Fourth accuser testifies in lawyer's rape trial; another alleges sex-with-judge offer

A fourth accuser testified on Tuesday in the sexual assault trial of a Columbus, Ohio, lawyer accused of preying on clients and their relatives.

The woman told jurors that lawyer Javier Armengau fondled her breasts, exposed himself and masturbated when she came to his office to discuss her criminal case, the Columbus Dispatch reports. She said she reported the incident to police, though there is no record of the complaint.

On Monday, a different accuser testified that Armengau tried to persuade her to perform oral sex on a judge in exchange for her son’s freedom, according to another Columbus Dispatch story. The next day, the woman said, the judge sentenced her son to four years in prison for a probation violation.

The woman also testified that Armengau forced her to perform oral sex in a conference room outside the courtroom after her son was sentenced. On at least 10 other occasions at Armengau’s office, she said, Armengau stripped naked in front of her and masturbated.

Defense lawyers referred to court documents and police reports to highlight inconsistencies in the women’s testimony.

The Columbus Bar Association sought an immediate suspension of Armengau’s law license on Monday, the Columbus Dispatch reported. Armengau sought a stay of the ethics proceedings in a motion filed today.

Armengau had continued to try cases after his indictment on charges of rape, sexual battery, gross sexual imposition, kidnapping and public indecency.

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