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State Supreme Court Overturns Conviction In Human Trafficking Case

The state Supreme Court has overturned the human trafficking conviction of a businessman who owned the Waterford Speed Bowl.

The high court found that there was too little evidence presented at trial, to convict Bruce Bemer of trafficking in persons as an accessory, or of patronizing a prostitute.

The justices found that prosecutors failed to prove that Bemer knew how the men were recruited.

The Supreme Court found that because Bemer was charged with patronizing a prostitute as a felony, he should only have been convicted, if he knew that the men were coerced into prostitution or lured through fraud.

A less serious misdemeanor charge would not have required the state to show that Bemer had that knowledge.

The supreme court found that jurors could have reasonably found that the Glastonbury businessman had sex with men in return for a fee.

The men were allegedly recruited by a different defendant, Robert King.

King found men with mental health or addiction problems, gave them drugs, then got them to pay for the drugs through prostitution.

Matt Dwyer is a producer for Where We Live and a reporter and midday host for Connecticut Public's news department.

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