Massage Parlor Mistrial Declared After Masseuse Recognizes Defense Lawyer as Client

It’s not every day that the American Bar Association website offers the world a dish of such delicious implications as this, served on a veritable silver platter, but PJM LifeStyle readers, today is our lucky day.  The eye-catching headline reads “Massage Parlor Mistrial Declared After Masseuse Recognizes Defense Lawyer as Client:”


A Chicago federal judge declared a mistrial last week in a sex-trafficking prosecution after a masseuse who worked for the defendant and testified for the prosecution recognized the defense lawyer as a client.

After stepping down from the stand, masseuse Liudmyla Ksenych told prosecutors she recognized defense lawyer Douglas Rathe, report the Chicago Sun-Times and the Chicago Tribune.

The revelation prompted U.S. District Court Judge Robert Gettleman to declare a mistrial in the case against a massage parlor owner accused of threatening immigrant women to extort money and force them to into sex trafficking.

As it turned out, not only was the prosecution witness a professional masseuse but, according to her client, the defense counsel, she holds a bachelor’s degree in law from her native Ukraine.  The lawyer failed to recognize her name on the witness list because she had worked as a masseuse under an assumed name.

Considering how law firms have been unleashing torrents of young, unemployed lawyers in the aftermath of the 2008 financial crisis and the recession it deepened, I have to admire the gumption of a young law graduate from central Europe coming to this country and contributing to the American economy by dint of hard work.  There was no evidence presented that Liudmyla Ksenych performed anything but massages for the defense attorney or for anyone else.


I wish her well in her future legal studies and I hope the defense attorney has the intestinal fortitude to withstand the national teasing that his proclivity for massages has brought about. Being a defense attorney, especially in Chicago, is stressful enough. I think he deserves some empathy.  But then, I’m not his wife.

(Photo of Ksenych from her Casting 360 page.)

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