Joseph Boeckmann is shown in this 2004 photo provided by the Wynne Progress. Dozens of the defendants have accused Boeckmann of sexual abuse and misconduct, saying the small-town judge paid them to allow him to spank their naked buttocks with a paddle and to take photos of the red skin. Others said they posed nude in exchange for money to pay off court fines.
Wynne Progress/AP
October 17, 2016 7:46 PM EDT

A former Arkansas judge accused of inappropriate sexual relationships with defendants was indicted on Monday on federal fraud and bribery charges.

A grand jury accused Joseph Boeckmann, former Cross County District Judge, of using his position “to obtain personal services, sexual contact and the opportunity to view and to photograph in compromising positions person who appeared before him in traffic and misdemeanor criminal cases in exchange for dismissing the cases.”

Boeckmann pleaded not guilty at an arraignment held Monday after the indictment, dated Oct. 5, was unsealed. He was indicted on eight counts of wire fraud, one count of federal program bribery, two counts of witness tampering and 10 counts of violating the federal Travel Act. According to the Associated Press, the most severe charges carry a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison and $250,000 in fines if Boeckmann is convicted.

Boeckmann, ordered held until a detention hearing on Wednesday, allegedly had over 4,600 photos of nude or semi-nude men. Several men have accused the former judge of sexual abuse and misconduct, with some saying Boeckmann paid to spank them with a paddle and take photos of the red skin. Others said they were paid to pose nude and use the money to pay off court fines.

Other victims, some of whom were underage, said they were offered community service instead of fines in exchange for posing for semi-nude photos.


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