Can Dead Oil Exec Be Held Responsible?

Gay Bondage Death Spurs Lawsuit

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A Massachusetts Supreme Court has a queer case on its hands. British national Adrian Exley died after voluntarily engaging in a bondage session with an American Gulf Oil executive, Gary LeBlanc. The men met on an S&M website and Exley agreed to hop the pond for a painful visit with LeBlanc.

Little did Exley know that meeting his “master” would lead to his death:

…Exley was wrapped tightly in heavy plastic, then bound with duct tape. A leather hood was put over his head, with a thin plastic straw inserted for air, and he was shut in a closet.

Exley’s body was discovered last June, two months after he was bound up in a bondage “playroom” Gary LeBlanc built in the basement of his suburban Boston home.

LeBlanc, Exley and another man, Scott Vincent had a three-day session of whips and chains which ended with Exley being stuffed in the closet. Exley, however, had already exhibited signs of physical duress.

Vincent checked in on him a few hours later and discovered he’d died. Then, in a panic, Vincent and LeBlanc took Exley’s body to a nature preserve and buried it. The body may have been gone, but LeBlanc’s conscience raged on and the 48-year old shot himself. In his suicide note, LeBlanc took “full responsibility” for Exley’s death, “I am taking my life because I did not responsibly take care of your beloved [Adrian]. Had I dealt with the first crisis responsibly, he would likely have returned home safely.”

Exley’s kin are now suing LeBlanc’s estate, saying that he’s responsible for the young man’s death. An attorney for the estate insists that his late client shouldn’t be held accountable, for Exley consented to the session:

It appears from all the objective evidence that the two were engaged in an activity that they both knew what the activity was, how it would be carried out, and they went forward on that basis. What occurred was an act or actions between two consenting adults, both of whom knew what they were doing, and it had a tragic end.

A lawyer for Exley’s estate says otherwise:

Just because you are agreeing that you will allow someone to tie you up temporarily as part of role-playing doesn’t mean that you are consenting to be killed or to be left alone or to be abused.

Vincent, meanwhile, faces a misdemeanor charge for neglecting to report Exley’s death.