LAS VEGAS (AP) — Trust was the word a prosecutor used to open the trial in Las Vegas for a suspended medical doctor accused of drugging women and patients, and videotaping himself having sex with them.
People loved Binh Minh “Ben” Chung unconditionally, prosecutor Alexander Chen told a jury on Thursday, but Chung disrespected and ignored their love and trust as a husband, father, friend and physician.
Chung, 43, a family physician whose practice was built on patient-to-patient referrals, is accused of injecting the tranquilizer Ketamine or a similar drug to sedate victims and then recording himself groping and raping them while they’re unconscious.
“What you’re not going to hear from any of the state’s witnesses is any consent,” Chen said.
The prosecutor showed photos from graphic videos Chung is accused of making, and played a song that was dubbed behind one. He said Chung’s ex-wife, patients, employees and former friends will testify during trial, which is expected to take several days.
Chen said videos will show little or no movement from the close family friend and three patients, including a 16-year-old girl, who Chung is accused of sexually assaulting. The girl sought treatment for acne. Another patient was being treated for a sore shoulder. A third for anxiety and stress.
Chung sat impassively in court, and defense attorney Betsy Allen didn’t deny that Chen was the person seen in the videos.
Allen acknowledged what she called “daunting” and “inflammatory” charges against Chung. But she asked the jury to listen during the trial for whether the state proves its case.
Chung faces 14 charges including sexual assault, kidnapping, administering a drug to aid commission of a felony, using a minor in production of pornography and lewdness. He could face life in prison if he is convicted of the most serious counts.
Defense attorneys haven’t said if Chung will testify.
His medical license was suspended following his arrest in June 2015. He remains jailed on $1 million bail.
It is not clear if the jury will hear that misdemeanor lewdness charges filed against Chung in 2006 were dismissed in 2009 after he agreed to 100 hours of community service and impulse control counseling. He was accused in that case of fondling a 15-year-old female patient who sought treatment for an eye infection.
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