Utah Co. restaurateur pleads not guilty in object rape, forcible sexual abuse case

AMERICAN FORK, Utah — A man accused of posing as a doctor and recruiting women for purported medical research in Utah County has pleaded not guilty to all 17 of the felony charges filed against him.

Borzin Mottaghian, 34, faces 12 counts of object rape, two counts of forcible sexual abuse, two counts of attempted object rape and one count of attempted forcible sexual abuse.

According to the Utah County Sheriff’s Office, three women reported they had each met with Mottaghian in a Provo office after responding to ads placed on Craigslist. The ads, a statement from the Sheriff’s Office said, called for paid volunteers for “medical research.”

One of the alleged victims said Mottaghian claimed to be conducting research related to catheters used in health care for women.

“After having the victim fill out paperwork and describing the research, Mottaghian had her disrobe from the [waist] down,” a statement from the Sheriff’s Office said.

Mottaghian is accused of using his hands and other objects to penetrate two of the alleged victims, and he is also accused of photographing at least one of them while she was undressed.

A third woman told investigators she responded to the ad and met with Mottaghian at the office, but she left “before Mottaghian was able to sexually assault her in the same manner he had done with the first victim,” the statement said.

Records show Mottaghian had been the proprietor of two Provo restaurants: “Cafe on Fire” and “Cocoa and Coffee Co.”

A status conference for Mottaghian has been scheduled for March 20.