Criminal Justice

Ex-lawyer pleads guilty to hypnotizing women for sexual pleasure, faces 12-year sentence

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Former Ohio lawyer Michael W. Fine pleaded guilty Monday to hypnotizing six women with the motive of getting sexual pleasure from them. Fine agreed to permanent disbarment last year.

The plea agreement includes five counts of kidnapping and one count of attempted kidnapping; each charge carries a sexual motivation specification, the Chronicle-Telegram reports. Fine was originally originally charged with rape, attempted rape, kidnapping, attempted kidnapping, attempted sexual battery, gross sexual imposition, attempted gross sexual imposition, possession of child pornography and engaging in a pattern of corrupt activity. Fine will receive a sentence of 12 years in prison under the deal and will have to register as a sex offender. He is due back in court for sentencing Nov. 7.

A client went to police in 2014 after she visited Fine for help on a custody matter and thought she lost time while there. She also felt that something sexual happened during the meeting, and had similar thoughts after meeting Fine in a conference room at the Lorain County Justice Center, according to an emergency suspension motion (PDF) filed by the Lorain County Bar Association.

Police initially suggested that she find another lawyer. The woman returned to Fine’s office, this time recording the interaction. He again put the woman in a trance, according to documents filed by the Lorain County Bar Association seeking Fine’s emergency suspension.

Fine reportedly told her that she would have the “most massive, most incredible, most powerful whole body orgasm in your entire life,” that she was “being made love to by the world’s greatest lover” and she would not cancel her next meeting with him, the suspension motion states.

The woman went back to law enforcement with the recording. She agreed to wear audio and video recording device for an additional meeting with Fine. After he hypnotized her again, police raided his office and did a search, which led to Fine’s arrest.

Another woman, who Fine represented in a dissolution proceeding, according to the Lorain County Bar Association filing, reported a similar experience with him. According to the Chronicle, a family law judge there also thinks that she may have been one of Fine’s victims. She also thinks that another lawyer, who has not been charged with a crime, and isn’t facing attorney discipline, could have been involved as well, the article reports.

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