In a resounding victory for justice, Robert Hadden, a former Columbia University gynecologist, faced the consequences of his abhorrent actions, being sentenced to 20 years in prison following his conviction on federal sexual abuse charges. The case gained widespread attention, particularly after the courageous testimony of Evelyn Yang, the wife of former Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, and the dedicated investigative reporting by CNN.
Unmasking a Predator
Dubbed a “predator in a white coat” by US Attorney Damian Williams, Hadden’s sinister intentions were exposed as he cruelly manipulated and victimized women who sought professional medical care at his offices.
The trial revealed four counts of enticing and inducing individuals to travel across state lines for illegal sexual activity, each of which carried a maximum sentence of two decades behind bars.
Before Judge Richard Berman delivered the sentencing, Hadden, visibly shaken, mustered the words to apologize for the pain he had caused. Despite the brevity of his statement, he insisted it did not reflect a lack of sincerity. His defense attorney had advised him to keep it brief to preserve opportunities for a potential appeal.
Victims’ Voices Amplified
The courage of Evelyn Yang and the relentless investigative efforts of CNN’s Dana Bash brought the horrific truth to light. As a result, numerous women came forward with their accounts of abuse by Hadden, highlighting the depth of his depravity and manipulation.
Prosecutors initially charged Hadden with six federal abuse counts, but a “streamlined” indictment later resulted in four counts of enticing individuals for illegal sexual activity. This adjustment ensured that Hadden’s guilt was effectively established in court, leading to the rightful conviction.
Controversial Past and a Plea Deal
The sordid history of Hadden’s case included a controversial plea deal in 2016, where he surrendered his medical license and pleaded guilty to a lesser charge. Shockingly, this deal allowed him to escape prison time, a fact that further fueled public outrage and calls for justice.
As Judge Berman handed down the sentence, Hadden’s life changed irrevocably. The 20-year prison term, imposed concurrently for each count, sends a strong message that abuse of trust and power will not go unpunished. Additionally, a $10,000 fine and lifetime supervised release will follow him once he serves his sentence.