Democratic California Rep. Tony Cardenas confirmed that he is the politician accused of assaulting a minor in a Jane Doe case, but categorically denied all allegations of misconduct.
“My client is sickened and distraught by these horrific allegations, which are 100 percent, categorically untrue,” Patricia Glaser, Cardenas’ attorney, said in a statement Thursday reported by the Los Angeles Times.
“We respect victims who have found the strength to come forward and call out misconduct when it has actually occurred, but the type of baseless and reckless allegations that are contained in the complaint against my client can ruin the lives and careers of innocent people,” Glaser said, adding that the accuser is the daughter of a “disgruntled former employee” who “may be the victim of manipulation.”
The unidentified accuser, represented by feminist and civil rights attorney Lisa Bloom, claims Cardenas drugged her drink during a golf outing in 2007, when the victim was 16, then molested her in a car after she collapsed on the course and had to be driven to the hospital, according to the LA Times.
The lawsuit Bloom, who has also represented several women who accused President Donald Trump of sexual misconduct, filed in April does not mention Cardenas, as California law prevents plaintiffs from naming defendants in civil cases involving child sex abuse “until there has been a showing of corroborative fact as to the charging allegations against that defendant.”
Cardenas apparently named himself as the accused to begin the work of convincing his fellow members and the public that he is not guilty of molesting a minor. The Washington Post reports that the California politician has been contacting fellow congressional members to assert his innocence.
“The congressman expects complete exoneration, as he is 100 percent innocent,” Glaser said.
Cardenas holds a low-level leadership position, and is a member of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus, and has been in Congress since 2013.
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