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Sex Battery Costs Massage Therapist $47M

A Pasco County civil jury said a former massage therapist and the company he worked for should pay $47.4 million to a woman who was sexually battered during a massage, the Tampa Bay Times reports.

The therapist, Raul Delarosa, pleaded to charges last year, agreeing to 10 years probation and the loss of his state license. He also registered as a sex offender, according to the Times.

In the civil trial, testimony showed that Essentials Massage and Facials of Wesley Chapel failed to perform a background check on Delarosa, who had been fired from three previous jobs, the Times reports. The victim was awarded $420,000 for past and future damages, $12 million for past and future pain and suffering, and an additional $35 million from Delarosa in punitive damages, according to the Times.

Originally founded in December 2006 as an independent grassroots publication dedicated to coverage of health issues in Florida, Health News Florida was acquired by WUSF Public Media in September 2012.