Wash. Doctor Charged with Molestation, Rape

September 16, 2004

The King County, Wash. prosecutor’s office plans to file criminal charges on Wednesday against Dr. Charles Momah, the gynecologist whose license was suspended a year ago after patients accused him of molesting and raping them.

Dan Donohoe, spokesman for the prosecutor’s office, said Tuesday that seven charges of sexual assault and insurance fraud would be filed.

The first allegations against Momah surfaced more than a year ago, and prosecutors have investigated the case for 11 months. More than 45 women have filed civil lawsuits against Momah in King County, alleging he performed painful and unnecessary surgeries on them, molested them and in some cases raped them. None of the civil cases has gone to trial yet.

“These are serious charges, and we wanted to make sure we were thorough,” Donohoe said.

The investigation included reviewing billing documents and medical records and interviewing former patients.

In the lawsuits, patients claim Momah pressured them into surgeries and prescribed addictive painkillers such as Vicodin, Valium, and morphine. Several women say in their lawsuits that Momah used their painkiller addiction to manipulate them – threatening to stop their prescriptions if they reported sexual abuse, or saying no one would believe them because they were drug addicts.

Momah’s attorney has said his client is innocent and plans to regain his license and practice medicine again.

Momah’s clinics in Burien and Federal Way, both known as the Northwest Center for Obstetrics, Gynecology & Infertility, have been shut down.

Copyright 2004 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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