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Sexual assault ensues under guise of Bible study

In the world of criminal law, few offenses are considered as grievous as those that involve sexual assault. Individuals who find themselves accused of sex crimes can be up against some severe legal consequences. Such is the case for two New Jersey men who were recently charged with both kidnapping and sexual assault. What's worse is that their alleged victim was mentally handicapped.

Reportedly, a 31-year-old man and his 30-year-old neighbor lured the assault victim (also 30 years old) into the basement of the oldest man's family home, at which point they sexually assaulted her. The woman then spent the night in the man's bedroom, sitting in a chair. Early the following morning, the man threw her out of the house into the freezing cold and falling snow. After two hours begging for a ride home from passersby, some of the man's family members found the woman out in the front of their home and paid for her taxi ride home.

The woman later reported the incident and the sexual assaults to her relatives -- who took her to the hospital for treatment. According to an investigation by New Jersey law enforcement, the woman decided to come to the man's house after he invited her under the guise of attending a Bible study. The two knew each other because they both attended the same church.

Both men are being held on $300,000 bond at the Union County Jail. They are being charged with kidnapping as well as sexual assault of a mentally disabled woman.

It seems understandable how prosecution in this case may be able to easily convince a jury of the each man's crime. For this reason, each will likely require the services of knowledgeable defense counsel. In this case, given the seriousness with which the law views sexual assault, a strong defense will be the men's only hope of a tolerable sentence.

Source: The WABC-TV, "2 charged with sexually assaulting disabled woman," Sept. 1, 2011

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