A San Francisco Superior court jury found a San Francisco man guilty Wednesday of targeting five undocumented male immigrants and sexually assaulting them while pretending to be a law enforcement officer between 2008 and 2014, according to the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office.
Jeffrey Bugai, 37, is now facing life in prison after being found guilty by the 12-person jury of 17 felony charges, according to the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office. Evidence presented during the course of the trial showed that Bugai, who was a licensed security guard, lured male victims to his home to sexually assault them, according to the district attorney’s Office.
The members of the jury found Bugai guilty of multiple counts of sexual assault, attempted sexual assault, sodomy, assault, sexual battery, forcible oral copulation, attempted forcible oral copulation, false imprisonment, extortion, and unlawfully administering a drug.
Some of the crimes Bugai carried out against his victims were committed with the use of a handgun, while in other instances Bugai drugged his victims in order to make them comply with his demands, according to the district attorney’s office. Bugai was also found guilty of extorting money from one of his victims. San Francisco District Attorney George Gascon said the victims in this case were initially afraid to come forward and to cooperate with authorities because of their immigration status.
“The facts of this case highlight why we desperately need immigration reform,” Gascon said in a statement released today. “Had some of the undocumented victims come forward earlier, authorities could have intervened and prevented others from being victimized by this predator,” he said.
Deputy Public Defender Phoenix Streets, who defended Bugai, said he will file an appeal in the case. Streets said that among other issues the stories the victims told to police and to the jury were different. Streets said experts for both the defense and prosecution agreed that the testimony of the drugged victims was false. “We had a lot to work with, but apparently not enough,” Streets said. Bugai faces possible life imprisonment and will be sentenced on March 6.
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