Trial reset for Saudi airman in Vegas sex case
LAS VEGAS (AP) — A judge on Wednesday scheduled trial to begin Oct. 10 for a Saudi Arabian air force sergeant accused of raping a 13-year-old boy last New Year’s Eve at a Las Vegas Strip hotel.
Trial had been scheduled Monday, but prosecutors and a defense attorney for 24-year-old Mazen Alotaibi told Clark County District Court Judge Stefany Miley they needed a little more time for each side to review DNA test results.
Jury selection and trial are expected to take several days.
Alotaibi has pleaded not guilty to nine felony charges, including kidnapping, sexual assault of a minor under 14 and lewdness with a child under 14 that each could get him life in prison. He faces additional lesser charges of sexually motivated coercion, and a burglary count accusing him of entering a room with intent to commit a crime.
Alotaibi spoke with his lawyer, Don Chairez, but said nothing as he listened to court proceedings Wednesday with an Arabic interpreter. Alotaibi is being held at the Clark County jail on $1.7 million bail.
Alotaibi told police in a video interview that he met the boy in a hallway at Circus Circus early Dec. 31. He said the boy wanted marijuana and offered to exchange sex for money.
Nevada state law says children under 16 cannot consent to sex.
Chairez argues that Alotaibi was too tired and intoxicated after traveling to Las Vegas from Los Angeles and staying up all night drinking cognac at a strip club, and too limited in English proficiency to waive his right to have a lawyer with him while he answered police questions.
Police reported collecting DNA evidence from a used condom and a soiled towel found in the hotel room bathroom where the boy said the attack took place.
Alotaibi was in the U.S. for military training.