Federal appeals court upholds conviction of suburban NY writer in sex abuse case

Associated Press

A court has upheld the conviction of a New York writer sentenced to 11 years in prison for sexually abusing young women he lured from overseas to work for him.

The 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Manhattan on Thursday left intact the conviction of 71-year-old Joseph Yannai (YAH'-nay), who wrote a reference guide called "The International Who's Who of Chefs 2004-2005."

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Prosecutors say he used au pair websites to persuade young women to live and work at his home in Pound Ridge, an upscale New York City suburb. Victims testified he subjected them to lewd behavior and threats.

Yannai was sentenced in 2013 for his 2011 conviction on forced labor, sex crime and other charges.

The defense said Yannai was a "dirty old man" but denied he broke the law.