« Retired St. Paul officer injured from accidental gun discharge | Main | China coal mine explodes »

Federal judge to face sex crime charges

U.S. District Judge Samuel Kent will made history in judicial court for being the first federal judge to face trial on a sex crime charge.

He is accused of fondling two female court employees as he tried to force himself on the women and have them perform sex acts, the Minnesota Daily reports.

Kent pleaded innocent to two counts of abusive sexual contact and one count of attempted aggravated sexual abuse, CNN.com said.

Kent faces up to life in prison and a fine up to $250,000 if convicted.

Kent has pleaded innocent to five charges related to federal sex crimes and to one alleging obstruction of justice, in which he is accused of lying to an investigative committee, the Daily said.

Dick DeGuerin, Kent's lawyer, said “Judge Kent believes his conduct with both of the (women) was mutual and consensual.”

DeGuerin said Kent and his secretary were involved in a longtime affair and that she is one of his “staunchest supporters.” DeGuerin said that Kent didn't mention the affair to the judicial council out of the concern a “gentleman” would have for keeping a secret.

Prosecutors have discounted that, saying: “Neither erectile dysfunction ... nor any other physical or mental conditions cited by the defendant prevented him from committing the charged offenses.”