Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Another Psychiatrist Child-Abuser Goes To Jail

Texas Psych Rape Law Bags Another Mental Health Provider

McAllen, Texas - A Hidalgo County jury today sentenced licensed professional counselor Sigifredo Flores, 52, of Progreso Lakes, to 27 years in prison for sexually assaulting patients in his care. An investigation by Texas Attorney General Greg Abbott’s Medicaid Fraud Control Unit (MFCU) revealed that Flores sexually abused two children and two adults during counseling sessions. This is the latest prosecution under Texas’s psych rape law, which makes it a criminal offense for mental health professionals to have sexual relations with patients.

“For a mental health practitioner to take sexual liberties with a patient is one of the more reprehensible acts of psychiatric abuse,” said Jerry Boswell, President of the Citizens Commission on Human Rights Texas. “I have to say that a long sentence like this was the end result we envisioned when we helped get the psych rape law passed in the early 1990’s. When you think of the incredible position of power and trust that these people hold, and the utterly dependent nature of their patients, we must send a strong message that if you work in mental health and engage in such egregious behavior, you will go to jail for a very long time.”

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