Monday, February 1, 2016

What's going to happen at first Bill Cosby criminal hearing?, UK: Cult Leader Sentenced to 23 Years for Abuse, Rape

What's going to happen at first Bill Cosby criminal hearing?
Maria Puente, USA TODAY   February 1, 2016
Will the criminal sexual-assault charges against Bill Cosby ever go to trial?  A hint may come Tuesday in a courthouse in Montgomery County, Pa., outside Philadelphia.

Assuming no delay, Cosby faces his first hearing on criminal charges that he hopes to persuade a judge to dismiss.

And some legal analysts say Cosby may succeed.

"I feel that, unfortunately, the current prosecutor has overstepped his bounds," says New York lawyer Jerry Reisman, who's been following the case. "A former prosecutor made a representation on behalf of his office ... that he would not prosecute (Cosby), so unless they can find some new circumstance, such as fraud, I feel that the case should be dismissed."

If that happens, he says, the likelihood of Cosby being tried in this case is probably nil.... 

UK: Cult Leader Sentenced to 23 Years for Abuse, Rape
By The Associated Press LONDON Jan 29, 2016

A cult leader was sentenced to 23 years in prison Friday for raping and sexually assaulting his female followers and keeping his daughter imprisoned in a secretive Maoist commune in London for three decades.

Prosecutors said 75-year-old Aravindan Balakrishnan, known as "Comrade Bala," abused and brainwashed his followers into believing he had God-like powers, ensuring they were too scared to leave the tiny radical communist group he ran in south London.

His victims included two women and his daughter, 33-year-old Katy Morgan-Davies, who was born into the commune and was almost never allowed to go out in 30 years. Describing Balakrishnan as a "narcissist and a psychopath," Morgan-Davies told British media he emulated people including Mao Zedong, Joseph Stalin and Saddam Hussein.

Sentencing Balakrishnan, Judge Deborah Taylor said his treatment of his daughter from her birth to the age of 26 "was a catalog of mental and physical abuse."

"These are grave and serious crimes conducted over a long period of time and you have shown no remorse whatsoever," she said.

Balakrishnan was convicted in December of rape, indecent assault, false imprisonment and cruelty to a child.... 

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