An eccentric artist known in Texas for the whimsical "Cadillac Ranch" has been accused in recent weeks of a slew of sexual abuse crimes against underage boys, filed in a series of lawsuits and criminal charges.
Stanley Marsh 3, a 74-year-old businessman and heir to an oil and gas fortune, was charged this week with 11 counts of sexually abusing a teenager and paying another boy to masturbate in front of him.
In recent weeks, six lawsuits on behalf of 10 unnamed plaintiffs have claimed they were paid in cash and alcohol to perform sex acts on Marsh when they were 15, 16, and 17-years-old, according to court documents.
Marsh is best known for the Cadillac Ranch, which features graffiti-covered Cadillacs sticking vertically out of a field in Amarillo. He runs art installations throughout the Amarillo area and helms his family's company, Marsh Enterprises.
The company's headquarters, in downtown Amarillo, are named in all of the lawsuits as the site where Marsh allegedly committed sexual abuse under the guise of mentoring young men interested in art.
Marsh, who had a stroke in 2011 and has been deemed legally incapacitated, has denied the charges through his attorneys and his guardian, his wife Gwendolyn.
"Instead of immediately reporting any alleged wrongdoing to the police, the (accusers) strategized, conferred, and waited," Paul Nugent, Marsh's criminal attorney, said in a statement this week.
"After Stanley Marsh 3 suffered a massive stroke and became legally incapacitated, the group implemented their plan to become multi-millionaires by signing contracts with an aggressive personal injury lawyer from Houston," Nugent said.
All of the plaintiffs are represented by attorney Anthony Buzbee, who did not return calls from ABC News.
Marsh was released from Potter County jail on $300,000 bond. He was pushed out of the jail's doorway in a wheelchair by Nugent and his wife.
"Stanley Marsh 3 is not guilty of the group's allegations, and will fight as vigorously as his declining health permits," Nugent said in the statement.
The allegations are not the first time Marsh has been accused of impropriety. Since 1995, five civil complaints and one criminal complaint have been filed against Marsh ranging from harassment to sexual assault of teenagers, according to the Amarillo Globe News. All of the complaints were eventually settled out of court or dismissed, the paper reported.
The lawsuits filed in the last two months claim that Marsh is a "serial abuser" with an "affinity for young boys," according to court documents.
Marsh's civil attorney, Kelly Utsinger, told ABC News it is his standard practice not to comment about ongoing litigation.
"We intend to present a spirited defense for Mr. Marsh," Utsinger said.
Weeks after the lawsuits were filed, Amarillo police searched the offices of Marsh Enterprises. The department said they "recovered evidence" that "corroborates the accounts of sexual exploitation," according to ABC News affiliate KVII.
The charges were filed in Potter County, but the Potter County District Attorney recused itself from the case, citing a conflict of interest, and asked Lubbock County District Attorney Matthew Powell to serve as special prosecutor.
Powell told KVII that the case will be brought to a grand jury in coming weeks, which could result in additional criminal charges against Marsh.Also Read