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In SDNY Defendant Booth Sought Bail To Treat Gunshot Wound But Gorenstein Remands

By Matthew Russell Lee

SDNY COURTHOUSE, June 6 – In the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York's Magistrates Court on June 5, shackled defendant Ronnell Booth asked to be released on bond so that he could have physical therapy on June 8 for a gunshot wound.

  Then the Assistant U.S. Attorney told Magistrate Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein that Ronnell Booth is in fact a suspect in a shooting related to the physical therapy he seeks. The AUSA said Booth has pending New York State cases including for dislocating his own daughter's shoulder. Judge Gabriel W. Gorenstein said none of this was in the Probation Department's report; he remanded Booth and ordered Geoffrey Berman's office to come up with more information by 2:30 pm on June 6.

  Inner City Press, the only media in the Mag Court on June 5 and against on June 6 while facing locked doors for no reason, looked into Ronnell Booth's underlying case, 15-cr-312. That in fact was a "felon in possession" guilty plea, to having a .40 caliber Smith & Wesson semi-automatic pistol on 149th Street and the Grand Concourse in The Bronx on 29 March 2015.

  In June 2019 Andrew Dalack of the Federal Defenders, doing his job, argued how the New York State charges against Ronnell Booth have a way of going away. But what does that prove? Ultimately on June 6 Federal Magistrate Judge Gorenstein said not much, more not enough. He said Defendant has not met his burden of showing that he is not a danger to the community. And Ronnell Booth was remanded in custody. Inner City Press will try to continue to follow this case, despite needlessly locked doors. See @SDNYLIVE.

Back on May 31, less then 24 hours after agreeing to free alleged pedophile Bryan Pivnick while detaining a homeless man who threatened the Washington DC mayor online, Magistrate Judge James L. Cott oversaw the presentment of a defendant just flown in from Lithuania.

 It was Vladislav Zapolskij, charged in a fraud in which elderly victim sent their life savings for vintage pick up trucks and other equipment, only to receive nothing in return. Zapolskij was arrested back in November 2018 in Lithuania but has been fighting extradition since. He "self-surrendered" early on May 31 and was flown all day from Vilnius to New York.

  His CJA lawyer agreed to detention at least until a hearing in front of SDNY District Judge Jesse Furman on June 4, 15 minutes after Judge Furman is to see the homeless DC threat Ogun. Inner City Press aims to be there - watch this site, and @SDNYLIVE.

   Last week in the hours after banker Stephen Calk was freed by Magistrate Judge Debra Freeman on $5 million bond with no co-signer, other SDNY cases continued

A dual British - US citizen living in Brooklyn but reaching out for underage sex was presented, with his wife in the courtroom by that time only with Inner City Press. Federal Defender Amy Gallichio argued that Peter Bright should be released, since his building in Brooklyn has a video surveillance system.

  But would the neighbors want the U.S. Attorney's Office to see their comings and goings? Gallichio offered for Bright to install his own camera over his door and turn the files in to the government. Judge Freeman found this of intersted and invited a second try, if only in writing. She quizzed Bright's all-American wife in the gallery and said the Peter is lucky. Was his claim to be "training" an eleven year old girl in The Bronx just puffery? Inner City Press will stay on this case.

  At 6:25 pm a defendant arrested at JFK airport on drug charges (heroin and fetanyl) appeared, with CJA lawyer de Castro and a court interpreter.

  The main issue, it seemed, was the defendant's prosthetic leg and the need for a "sock" and one that was cleaned. Judge Freedman signed an order that defendant Rivas-Marichal, dubbed "peg-leg" by one heartless Mag Court denizen, no longer by held in leg irons. The U.S. Marshals quickly obliged. And then led him away.

   Earlier at 5:30 pm a taxi driver from Astoria, Queens was in the dock along with a younger man from India whose Federal Defender sparred with the Assistant U.S. Attorney about his right to copy Defendant Malhotra's passport.

  Ultimately Magistrate Judge Debra Freeman, handling arraignments this week, told the government NOT to copy the passport, but continued detention for Malhotra unlike Calk. The taxi driver was released but can no longer use a smart phone, only some ill-defined satellite mapping system. Inner City Press will continue to follow that and this case.


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