Sexual Assault by Fraud

Informed Consent' and Why it Doesn't Work

Image courtesy of PetaPixel.

New Jersey nurse, Mischele Lewis, fell in love with the wrong man [1][2].  It was a mistake that would propel her into a world of deceit.

Lewis, a divorced mother of two, believed she had found true love.  The object of her affection, William Allen Jordan a/k/a Liam Allen, described himself as an undercover operative for the British Ministry of Defense.

Jordan turned out to be a con man and convicted sex offender, with ex-wives on two continents, and a half dozen children.  After wearing a wire, Lewis managed to secure a conviction of Jordan for scamming her out of funds.

Lewis then sought unsuccessful passage in New Jersey of a controversial rape law which would have criminalized sex by deception [3][4].  A comparable effort is currently underway in New York, supported by victims of former Hollywood producer, Harvey Weinstein [5].

At issue is the question of informed consent [6].  Though women subjected to the type of fraud Lewis experienced feel profoundly violated, only a small number of states have laws along this line [7].

Rape laws generally focus on the use of force, the threat of physical harm, and mental defect or incapacity (as with use of the “date rape” drug rohypnol).

The concern is that expanding the definition of informed consent to include deception could create a “slippery slope” requiring courts to distinguish between the white lies in which lovers commonly engage and material misrepresentation sufficient to undermine consent [8].

For there is no faithfulness in their mouth;
Their inward part is destruction;
Their throat is an open tomb;
They flatter with their tongue” (Ps. 5: 9).

Scripture tells us that the human heart is deceitful (Jer. 17: 9).  It is little wonder that violence, callousness, and deception characterize even our most intimate relationships.

[1]  NBC News, “’I Wanted Justice’:  Con Victim Turns Focus to Changing Rape Law”, 1/24/15, https://www.nbcnews.com/news/us-news/i-wanted-justice-con-victim-turns-focus-changing-rape-law-n291661.

[2]  Dateline, “The Mystery Man”, 2/12/17, https://www.nbcnews.com/dateline/video/full-episode-the-mystery-man-881079875730.

[3]  Wikipedia, “Rape by Deception”, https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rape_by_deception.

[4]  NY Times, “Is Sex by Deception a Form of Rape?” by Abby Ellin, 4/23/19, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/23/well/mind/is-sex-by-deception-a-form-of-rape.html.

[5]  ABC News, “New bill that would define ‘consent’ in New York has the support of 2 Weinstein accusers” by Marlene Lenthang, 4/7/21, https://abcnews.go.com/US/bill-define-consent-york-support-weinstein-accusers/story?id=76897871.

[6]  IMDB, “Web of Lies”, The Candyman, Season 3, Episode 10, https://www.imdb.com/title/tt5498880/.

[7]  NY Times, “Is Sex by Deception a Form of Rape?” by Abby Ellin, 4/23/19, https://www.nytimes.com/2019/04/23/well/mind/is-sex-by-deception-a-form-of-rape.html.

[8]  Other situations potentially falling within this umbrella are so called “gender fraud” (disguising one’s biological identity prior to sexual intercourse) and failure to disclose positive HIV status to a partner.

Connecticut may expand the state’s domestic violence laws to cover “coercive and controlling behavior”.  This would include such behavior as isolation, so called “revenge porn”, and financial abuse.

Actress Evan Rachel Wood (who has accused Brian Warner a/k/a Marilyn Manson of abusing her) testified in favor of the proposed expansion.

See, https://lawandcrime.com/high-profile/actress-evan-rachel-wood-testifies-she-was-abused-by-a-high-profile-person-in-hearing-connected-to-jennifer-dulos-case/.

FOR MORE OF MY ARTICLES ON POVERTY, POLITICS, AND MATTERS OF CONSCIENCE CHECK OUT MY BLOG A LAWYER’S PRAYERS AT: https://alawyersprayers.com

18 Comments

Filed under Child Molestation, Christianity, domestic abuse, Justice, Law, Rape, Religion, Sexual Abuse, Sexual Assault

18 responses to “Sexual Assault by Fraud

  1. This is a slippery slope for sure I would say Anna. But most importantly I would say that it has a lot to do with wishful thinking on the part of many women and that perhaps many women, especially divorced with small children, should be extremely careful when letting a new man into their life…

  2. Sex by deception is deeply traumatizing. I agree that it is a form of rape.

  3. Hmm, this is a tough one isn’t it? Coercion; I see the reasonableness of that. However, deception could absorb such a broad range of behaviour that it would, I fear, lead to a very slippery slope.

  4. Indeed, the outward appearances of a man may be deceptive at any time .To make things more complicated, people may not even know the true content of their own hearts at every point in time. How many times have decisions been made willfully before a person knows what they really want? Anna, I can see the slippery slope you described here. Thanks for sharing.

  5. I have a dear widow friend who was so lonely she begin to use the net for companionship. of course she found it too, and he sounded so good, too good to be true but he was also evasive about his business and his travel. He made her believe he was about to lose his business because his business partner did him wrong. Because of that he had to travel back to England where his business was. Thanks God she was talking to me and another friend and both of us had the same red flags. she finally broke from him before she gave him money or flew off to meet him. I pray if I ever become widowed some of my friends will watch out for me. I am against young girls having phone because of this because even with all the check this guys are con artist and know how to get around the checks. it’s scary for sure. Great post, thanks for keep us aware of the evil that is out there.

  6. Yes, the Bible is right when it says the heart is deceitful above all things … And yet we so often allow ourselves to be deceived. If only we could have open eyes and a more discerning heart ….

  7. Tú lo dijiste en uno de tus comentarios, Anna, “para que esta situación se remediara, tendríamos que cambiar los corazones”. Te saludo con mucho afecto y con el deseo de que te encuentres bien.

  8. An eye-opening article, Anna. Reprobates seem to lurk in every corner! We must be vigilant, confide in wise friends and seek their counsel, and above all ask God for his guidance along the right paths (Psalm 23:3).

  9. This is often practiced in India also, deception, fake love with the motive of rivalry or any malicious actvity is heightening. I must say awareness and only awareness can save you from this kind of thing. Law can give you justice but for making your life good you must be careful.
    Thank you for sharing.

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