Crime & Courts

Secret recordings allowed in Algonquin dentist's sexual assault trial

Eman Shirazi, 43
Eman Shirazi, 43

A McHenry County judge ruled Wednesday that a jury will hear secretly recorded conversations between an Algonquin dentist and the woman he is accused of sexually assaulting in his office.

Eman Shirazi, 43, is charged with criminal sexual abuse, criminal sexual assault and unlawful restraint. The dentist and orthodontist was arrested at Water Tower Family Dental in Algonquin, where a woman with whom he had a two-year business relationship said he sexually assaulted her on Jan. 11, 2018.

Shirazi was arrested days after the alleged victim participated in secretly recorded conversations with him as Algonquin police listened in.

His attorneys, Gary Johnson and Thomas Loizzo, argued that any statements made during those recordings and the recordings themselves should be barred from trial.

They said the affidavit obtained to set up the recordings did not show “sufficient facts.” They also argued that any statements made were the result of coercion by the victim while working as “an agent” with the Algonquin police, therefore Shirazi was indirectly threatened by police to make admissions.

Attorneys referred to a text message where the woman was trying to get Shirazi to call her. On Jan. 18, 2018, she texted: “When can we talk? I haven’t been sleeping. I don’t know what to think about what happened. At the very least I would really like for you to apologize for what you did and promise that it will never happen again or I’m going to file a police report. I know you’re probably with your family right now so can we talk about this tomorrow please?”

The two eventually spoke and these conversations were recorded.

Judge Robert Wilbrandt also granted the state’s motion to include details of Shirazi’s alleged sexual behavior during the alleged assault, regarding other acts for which he is not charged.

A pretrial conference is set for Aug. 8. Trial set for Aug. 12.

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