New York City doctor charged with sexually assaulting unconscious patients and filming it

Aug 7, 2023, 2:11 PM

NEW YORK (AP) — A New York City doctor was charged Monday in connection with the alleged sexual abuse of at least six women, including several patients who were drugged, filmed and assaulted during appointments at a prestigious local hospital, prosecutors said.

Zhi Alan Cheng was arraigned Monday on charges of sexually abusing three of his patients at New York-Presbyterian Queens hospital and raping three other women inside his apartment in Queens, New York. He pleaded not guilty to the charges.

The 33-year-old gastroenterologist was terminated from his hospital job in December after his arrest for allegedly raping a female acquaintance in his Queens home. At the time, the woman told authorities she had discovered videos of Cheng abusing her and multiple other women.

As investigators searched his home and devices, they uncovered a trove of video evidence showing the doctor abusing women inside his home and workplace, according to the new indictment.

The footage showed Cheng groping three hospital patients, including a 19-year-old and a “seriously ill” 47-year-old, prosecutors said. All of the women appeared to be unconscious during the abuse, suggesting Cheng used anesthesia to sedate them, according to court documents.

Multiple types of liquid anesthesia were recovered from his home, alongside recreational narcotics such as cocaine and ecstasy, the court documents say.

An attorney for Cheng did not immediately return a request for comment.

In a statement, Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz said the evidence pointed to “a serial rapist, someone willing to not only violate his sacred professional oath and patients’ trust, but every standard of human decency.”

The arrest follows the sentencing of another doctor in the NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital system, Robert Hadden, a gynecologist who allegedly abused 245 women over the span of two decades. He was sentenced to 20 years in prison in June.

Cheng’s alleged abuse took place over a much shorter period of time, between 2021 and 2022. But prosecutors said they had additional evidence to suggest that Cheng assaulted other women at different locations in New York City, Las Vegas, San Francisco and Thailand, although he has not been charged in connection with those incidents.

Angela Karafazi, a spokesperson for New York-Presbyterian, said Cheng’s alleged conduct was “a fundamental betrayal of our mission and our patients’ trust.”

The hospital intends to review its patient safety policies and implement additional training for all employees, she said.

United States News

This is the message U.S. cellphone customers see during testing of the federal emergency alert syst...

Associated Press

What to expect Wednesday when federal government tests emergency alerts

Here's what to expect if you have a cellphone or are watching TV when the federal government tests its emergency alert system Wednesday.

51 minutes ago

Associated Press

After judge’s rebuke, Trump returns to court for 3rd day for fraud lawsuit trial

NEW YORK (AP) — Former President Donald Trump returned to his New York civil fraud trial for a third day Wednesday after running afoul of the judge by denigrating a key court staffer in a social media post. Trump, the Republican front-runner in the 2024 presidential race, is voluntarily taking time out from the campaign […]

1 hour ago

FILE - First lady Jill Biden waits to speak at the Library of Congress in Washington, Wednesday, Ap...

Associated Press

Jill Biden urges women to get mammograms or other cancer exams during Breast Cancer Awareness Month

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jill Biden is urging women to consult their doctors about getting mammograms or other cancer screenings, saying in a new public service announcement for Breast Cancer Awareness Month that early detection saves lives. “October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and I’m asking you to put your health first,” the first lady says […]

4 hours ago

Associated Press

Pilot accused of stalking New York woman via small airplane, flying from Vermont

BENNINGTON, Vt. (AP) — A man has been accused of stalking a woman in New York via his small airplane, flying out of an airport in nearby Vermont, police said. Michael Arnold, 65, was scheduled to appear in court Wednesday in Bennington, Vermont. He was arrested Tuesday as he was driving into the William H. […]

4 hours ago

Associated Press

Thousands of US health care workers go on strike in multiple states over wages and staff shortages

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Picketing began Wednesday at Kaiser Permanente hospitals as some 75,000 health care workers went on strike in Virginia, California and three other states over wages and staffing shortages, marking the latest major labor unrest in the United States. Kaiser Permanente is one of the country’s larger insurers and health care system […]

4 hours ago

FILE - President Joe Biden speaks about student loan debt relief at Delaware State University, Oct....

Associated Press

Biden presses student debt relief as payments resume after pandemic pause

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden will announce another wave of federal student loan forgiveness on Wednesday, according to a White House official, as borrowers brace for payments to restart after a three-year pause that began during the COVID-19 pandemic. His latest step will help 125,000 borrowers by erasing $9 billion in debt through existing […]

7 hours ago

Sponsored Articles



Importance of AC maintenance after Arizona’s excruciating heat wave

An air conditioning unit in Phoenix is vital to living a comfortable life inside, away from triple-digit heat.

Home moving relocation in Arizona 2023...

BMS Moving

Tips for making your move in Arizona easier

If you're moving to a new home in Arizona, use this to-do list to alleviate some stress and ensure a smoother transition to your new home.



Here are the biggest tips to keep your AC bill low this summer

PHOENIX — In Arizona during the summer, having a working air conditioning unit is not just a pleasure, but a necessity. No one wants to walk from their sweltering car just to continue to be hot in their home. As the triple digits hit around the Valley and are here to stay, your AC bill […]

New York City doctor charged with sexually assaulting unconscious patients and filming it