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Couple Is Accused of Assaulting 2 Women

October 08, 1999|MONTE MORIN | SPECIAL TO THE TIMES

A Bel-Air investment banker and former actor and his female housemate were charged with drugging and sexually assaulting two women at his Sunset Boulevard mansion, prosecutors said Thursday.

Joseph Simon Arsenault, 40, and Heather Lynn Moe, 24, will be arraigned Wednesday in West Los Angeles Municipal Court.

The suspects were charged Wednesday with 13 counts of sexual assault, one count of assault causing great bodily injury and one count of possession of cocaine for sale.

The attacks occurred at Arsenault's Bel-Air mansion Aug. 20 and Sept. 25, said Deputy Dist. Atty. Laura Jane Maglinger.

The first victim told police that she was visiting a friend who had rented a guest house from Arsenault and that she was given a drink of what she believed was water. The drink was laced with a date rape drug called GHB--short for gamma-hydroxybutyrate, Maglinger said. The woman said she was then sexually assaulted.

The other victim met Moe at a nightspot and also was given a drink with GHB, prosecutors said. She said she was taken to Arsenault's home and sexually assaulted.

After the women went to police, officers obtained a search warrant and discovered a large quantity of cocaine at the house, authorities said. Officers also found seven bottles of GHB, in addition to numerous films and videos of unidentified women. Arsenault and Moe were arrested and released on bail.

GHB is a powerful depressant. The drug depresses the central nervous system and can lead to severe breathing problems. Several people in the United States have died after ingesting the drug.

Possession or sale of GHB is illegal, except for special uses approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

During the past week, detectives continued the investigation. Arsenault and Moe were arrested again Tuesday in connection with the sexual assaults.

Police said Thursday that there may be more victims and requested help from the public.

LAPD Det. Andre Dawson said anyone with information should call (310) 575-8408.

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