NEWARK, N.J. – A New Jersey man accused of groping a woman on a cross-country flight has told the court in his sex abuse trial that he has decided not to testify in his defense.
Federal prosecutors rested their case Wednesday against Bawer Aksal, after which he notified the judge of his decision. Aksal has pleaded not guilty to charges of sexual abuse and abusive sexual contact. He's accused of abusing a fellow passenger on a United Airlines flight in August from Phoenix to Newark.
Aksal has denied through his attorney that he harmed the woman, whom he said he did not know. Conviction on the charges carries a statutory maximum penalty of life in prison.
The woman has testified she awoke from sleep to find Aksal fondling her.