Inner City Press

In Other Media-eg New Statesman, AJE, FP, Georgia, NYTAzerbaijan, CSM Click here to contact us     .

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis

Share |   

Follow on TWITTER

Home -

These reports are usually available through Google News and on Lexis-Nexis


(FP Twitterati 100, 2013)

ICP on YouTube

More: InnerCityPro
Sept 24, 2013

UN: Sri Lanka


FOIA Finds  

Google, Asked at UN About Censorship, Moved to Censor the Questioner, Sources Say, Blaming UN - Update - Editorial

Support this work by buying this book

Click on cover for secure site orders

also includes "Toxic Credit in the Global Inner City"




Bank Beat

Freedom of Information

How to Contact Us

In Sex Cult Case Larry Ray Motions to Suppress Are Denied As 72-Page Order Upholds Warrant

By Matthew Russell Lee, Patreon Podcast
BBC - Decrypt - LightRead - Honduras - Source

SDNY COURTHOUSE, May 26 – When Larry Ray was arraigned on charges of sexual exploitation, prostitution, forced labor and money laundering on February 12, 2020 he was wearing prison blues and still had a Federal Defender, but no financial affidavit to have FD appointed. Twitter theadette; More on Patreon here. 

  On April 28, 2021, there was a suppression hearing about his arrest and questioning. Inner City Press live tweeted it here and below.

Now on May 26 in a 72-page Order Judge Liman has denied Ray's and Federal Defenders' motions to dismiss, addressing matters ranging from the storage units to the basis for the warrants, including "Ray complains that the CSLI Search Warrant Affidavit omitted evidence that called into question FV1’s reliability as a witness, including that: (1) FV-1’s friends reported that she “stretched the truth for effect,” and “wanted to make herself more exciting,” and was the “best at [] telling stories”; (2) FV-1 wrote in a blog post that she would lie to her parents and her teachers; (3) in the same blog post, FV-1 described Ray as a “friend and a confidant,” and FV-1 told friends that Ray was a “good guy”; (4) FV-1 wrote in an email to the dean of Sarah Lawrence College stating that she “made false allegations to the police” about Mr. Ray; (5) in 2015, FV-1 testified under oath that she had poisoned Ray, lied to him and his daughter, and later became his friend; (6) FV-1 was arrested for prostitution and told police that she was not being trafficked and told at least one client the same thing. Dkt. No. 137 at 11. Ray argues that this information, which was omitted from the CSLI Search Warrant Affidavit, would have undermined FV-1’s statements and that without FV-1’s statements, there was insufficient probable cause for investigators to obtain Case 1:20-cr-00110-LJL Document 184 Filed 05/26/21 Page 29 of 72 30 the historical cell site information. He thus argues that the search warrant for the cell site information must be voided and the fruits of the search excluded. The argument lacks merit. As an initial matter, Ray fails to identify any material information omitted from the CSLI Search Warrant Affidavit. To determine whether the alleged misstatements or omissions are material, the Court must “disregard the allegedly false statements” and “insert the omitted truths” and, after doing so, “determine whether there remains a residue of independent and lawful information sufficient to support probable cause.” Nejad, 436 F. Supp. 3d at 719 (internal citations omitted). Where information is allegedly omitted, the question is whether the warrant, with the addition of the omitted information would still support probable cause. See Franks, 438 U.S. at 156; United States v Canfield, 212 F.3d 713, 718 (2d Cir. 2000). “If, after setting aside the allegedly misleading statements or omissions, the affidavit, nonetheless, presents sufficient information to support a finding of probable cause, the district court need not conduct a Franks hearing.” Salameh, 152 F.3d at 113; see also Ganek, 874 F.3d at 82 (“To determine whether a false statement was necessary to a finding of probable cause, [the court] consider[s] a hypothetical corrected affidavit, produced by deleting any alleged misstatements from the original warrant affidavit and adding to it any relevant omitted information.”).The CSLI Search Warrant Affidavit passes that test. The CSLI Search Warrant Affidavit contained detailed information that FV-1 provided directly to law enforcement."  We'll have more on this.

From April 28: NYPD Detective who arrested Larry Ray is being questioned.

Q: Did you have your gun drawn?

Detective: No. Q: Did you refuse to give him Adderol?

Detective: Yes, the bottle of pills was not in his name.

Q: On Feb 11, 2020, did you have any concerns about Mr. Ray's health?

Detective: No. Now AUSA plays audio of the arrest, FBI agent telling Ray, You could get in front of a judge by 2 pm, I get paid either way....

On audio, Ray said, I've been through this process in the past. Now Ray's Federal Defender will cross examine the FBI agent. Q: There were 27 members of the team arresting him? Detective: Like I said, 15 or 20.

 Q: When you got to Federal Plaza, you asked him if he needed psychological help? Agent: Yes.  Q: And he said there was something he didn't want to talk about, right? Detective: Yes. Q: But you wanted to keep him talking?

Detective: Agent McGuire was running the interview.

 [This agent, Detective Perkins is on jointed NYPD-FBI task force. He's with NYPD 28 years.]

Detective: I'll take ownership for not recording the interview. I thought Agent McGuire was recording. It was miscommunication.]

 Judge Liman: Are you about to wrap up? Federal Defender: I'm not about to wrap up. Judge Liman: We'll take a break in five minutes. FD: Did Agent McGuire have a list of questions?

Detective: You'll have to ask her. [This could take a while]

 They've back. Ray's Federal Defender is asking the NYPD Detective about previously false charging a woman with being a sex worker who sold drugs to customers. In fact, she was neither. Inner City Press: Would this detective be a witness at Ray's trial?

 Now on re-direct, NYPD Detective is saying the Bernard Kerik "was my old boss." AUSA:  Is there a reason your weapon was not shown during the interview? Detective: NYPD says, if not needed, in interview, cover the weapon.

 In both civil suits against this NYPD Detective who arrested but didn't record Ray, NYC settled for money and indemnified the officer.

AUSA: I'm showing you Defendant's Exhibit I (eye). Who participated in the transport of Mr. Ray?

Detective: Don't know.

Next witnesses: FBI Agent McGuire, in C20 unit (child exploitation). Before that, with Charleston SC PD.

AUSA: Where was Mr. Ray on February 10, 2020? Agent McGuire: Piscataway, New Jersey. The next day we arrested him there.

Here in Judge Liman's courtroom, Larry Ray in prison blues with 2 Marshals. Inner City Press + 2 in gallery, incl an older gentlemsn in a light jacket. Seems Ray has 4 lawyers.

 Judge Liman calls a break. The questioning of Agent McGuire will continue after it. Thread to continue, maybe interim podcast during the break, many questions, including why didn't they record interrogation of Ray?

Agent McGuire is off the stand. Now, arguments on suppression. Federal Defender: It is the government's burden to show that Miranda was complied with. Here, they haven't. So the court has an insufficient record. There were 25 agents in his house, with guns drawn

FD: Mr. Ray was interrogated while sitting on the bed, the Agent was sitting on the bed with another agent nearby. This was intimidation. When you're in the pajamas.

FD: Mr Ray said, I don't want to talk about it. But Agent McGuire told him he had to answer her direct questions...   And now the five hour proceeding is over - there'll be a future argument on search warrants. Podcast. Watch this site.

  Inner City Press reported the addition of co-defendant Isabella Pollok, and the inquiry into her competence. On April 13, Bois Schiller got an April 16 in camera hearing on dropping Pollok as a client, part of a semi-public session that Inner City Press live tweeted, here:

First, Peter M. Skinner of Boies Schiller Flexner LLP says he wants to withdraw as Pollak's lawyer, on consent. Judge Liman says he'll get to that later in the proceeding. First, he asks about the competency evaluation of Pollak. The finding? She is competent.

 The doctor's April 6 letter, Boies Schiller says they thought the doctor submitted it directly to Judge Liman.

Judge: We have a suppression hearing coming up. Anything more on that? Ray's lawyer: We have asked for the 3500 material by April 21. No confirmation yet

 Ray's lawyer: We object to witnesses wearing masks.

Judge Liman: Is there precedent for me to issue an order to the government to release the 3500 material? Maybe there's another way to accomplish this.  Ray's lawyer: Perhaps the Court could simply urge the gov't

AUSA: We only got the request yesterday. I have to confer with a supervisor. On masks, there have been proceedings in this District using them. The government has no objection to witnesses wearing masks. Judge Liman: Two witnesses? AUSA: Yes.

 Judge Liman: I urge you to produce the 3500 material. On masks, I'm the fact finder. I'm able to judge credibility of a witness with a mask on, based on content and body movement and how they answer - if they are defensive or forthcoming. Objection overruled

Judge Liman: If a larger courtroom become available, we might move there. And if I can't make credibility determinations, we'll address that then. AUSA: We need a schedule for our motion for a bill of particulars, we could make it in about four weeks.

AUSA: We'd need two weeks to respond. Judge Liman: Motion by May 14, US response by May 28, any reply by June 4. AUSA: Mr. Ray recorded his own post-arrest interview. We'd like a copy. Judge Liman: That would be covered by Rule 16. Ray's lawyer: We will comply.

Ray's lawyer: .. but we're not convinced we are required to produce this - we are unaware of such a recording, and we have not reviewed any such recording. Judge Liman: I trust you will ask Mr. Ray.

AUSA: Are we still on for a September trial date? Judge Liman:  It may depend if I agree to substitution of counsel to Mr. Lind. We are going out of the call now, to a virtual separate room. There is to be nobody else in the room. Later I will come out and rule

 9:55 am - and they're back from the break-out room.

Judge Liman: I spoke with them in camera, to be filed under seal. I am going to grant the application to withdraw. I will appoint Mr. Lind to represent Ms Pollak under the Criminal Justice Act. Lind: I need some weeks, I'm tied up with other cases.

Judge Liman: Three weeks - we'll have another conference, with Mr. Ray and his counsel too. May 10. Ms. Pollak: That's okay. Adjourned.

 Jump-cut to March 19, 2021 and Larry Ray's lawyers are saying the two hours every week day on the computer is not enough. The US Attorney's Office has replied with an affidavit that the MCC allows some 25 inmates similar privileges. And the others? Watch this site.

Now on March 29, a schedule: "ORDER as to Lawrence Ray: The Government and the defense have each submitted schedules for the Government to file its in limine motion related to evidence regarding the psychological and medical treatment of the alleged victims in this case. The Court previously has ordered each side to answer questions that the Court has with respect to the motions to suppress by April 12, 2021. The Court will hold a motion hearing regarding the Defendants motion to suppress statements on April 28, 2021 at 10:00AM in Courtroom 15C at the 500 Pearl Street Courthouse and will hear argument on the motion to suppress evidence on that same date. Those dates are firm. Based on those dates, the following is the schedule for the in limine motion regarding psychiatric and medical evidence: Government motion due by June 18, 2021; Defense response due by July 2, 2021; Government reply due by July 9, 2021."

  Back on n January 29, there was a co-defendant who was indicted and then released on bond: Isabella Pollak. The next indicted was unsealed and Pollak was presented before SDNY Magistrate Judge Debra C. Freeman. She was released on $100,000 bond and told, no contact with victims.

On February 9 Judge Liman held Pollak's arraignment and was told, at the end, that she may not be competent to stand trial. Inner City Press live tweeted it, here and below.

 On February 15 - President's Day - Pollak's lawyers Peter M. Skinner and Valecia J. Battle of Boies Schiller Flexner asked for a one-week extension to pick a candidate to perform a competency evaluation of Pollack. I

Now on February 23, the parties have proposed Dr. James L. Knoll, M.D., to be paid with DOJ funds under 18 USC 4272(b), to report in 45 days. Inner City Press will continue to follow this.

On February 10, Judge Liman held a proceeding with Ray and his Federal Defender who asked until April for filings, to key them to the deadline for co-defendant Pollock. September 20 was mentioned for trial. But there is a long way to go.

From February 9: AUSA: Discovery is ready, with one caveat - we need a protective order. There are warrants, warrant applications, a tax order, email header info, cell site returns....

 AUSA: We are extracted dozens of devices, we are trying to find out which ones are Ms. Pollak's.  Judge Liman: These were in plain view? AUSA: Correct. With the caveat that the FBI agent, using a particular platform - I'm not sure if it is a file by file review.

Judge Liman: We're going to have to adjourn the trial. I don't think a July trial is feasible.

 But wait there's more: Pollak's lawyer just called her "Ms. Ray" - then said she may be incompetent to stand trial. Next date: April 15 (since Pollak's works - where? - Sunday to Wednesday). Case gets weirder all the time...

Inner City Press will have more on this.

 On November 20, 2020 Judge Liman held a proceeding in the case. Inner City Press live tweeted it, here and below.

On January 8, the US Attorney's Office opposed Ray's motion to suppress. They say he was read his Miranda rights, was taken to the bathroom, and did not lose his balance. He said he took Adderall; "the law enforcement officers declined to provide Ray with another person's prescription medication."

Now, the hearing on the suppression motion which was set to be virtual is adjourned, at the defense's request, until in-person proceedings are possible: " MEMO ENDORSEMENT as to Lawrence Ray (1) granting [121] LETTER MOTION addressed to Judge Lewis J. Liman from Marne Lynn Lenox dated January 21, 2021 re: Suppression Hearing. ENDORSEMENT: GRANTED. The Motion Hearing scheduled for February 12, 2021 is canceled. The court will hold an in-person hearing when the Covid-19 protocols permit the Court to do so. (Signed by Judge Lewis J. Liman on 1/21/2021)."

In a separate filing, the US Attorney's Office opposes Ray's fourth application for release on bail. Another filing justifies the search warrant on 40 Holly Lane. Inner City Press will have more on this.

From November 20: Judge Liman begins with the Due Process Protections Act script - not including what seems to be for some judges a new paragraph about the government's right to ask for an exception for national security, etc. The 5(f) script is in evolution - District by District?

Judge Liman to his credit says he thinks he made a mistake with the phrasing of the subpoenas - but his preliminary view is that he will not cure it in the way the US Attorney as asking

Judge Liman says he is considering quashing some subpoenas he has issued for the defense and re-issue them. He says as to Jane Doe 1, only New York Presbyterian has records.   Note: At issue are medical and mental health records of Ray's victims.

AUSA Danielle Sassoon: There are several bases to quash these subpoenas. They don't comply with Rule 17; they are transparent attempts to get impeachment material, not permissible at this point at of the case. We don't even know if these victims would be witnesses

AUSA Sassoon: We have evidence that Mr. Ray took advantage of victims' weaknesses, that several attempted suicide and he then interfered in their mental care.... Our grand jury subpoenas are not subject to the "Nixon" test

AUSA Sassoon: In some cases, victims cut their parents out of their medical care and let Mr. Ray to speak with their doctors. Judge Liman: But then doesn't the defense have a right to information about whether the medical care was interfered with?

Judge Liman: Make me a proffer as to how the government would prove up interference with medical care without using the medical records. AUSA Sassoon: We distinguish what the victims said to their treatment providers.

Judge Liman: Is the victim going to say Mr. Ray told them to cut the parents out? AUSA: Yes, I anticipate testimony about guidance Mr. Ray gave... Meanwhile, the defense's subpoenas are too broad, including time periods after the victim's relationship with Mr. Ray FD Lenox: I think Mr. LaVerne [for Jane Doe] covered the argument, but I'm happy to take questions.

Judge Liman: Why shouldn't subpoena returns come to me for in camera review. I'm the one who's going to try the case and there's a value to seeing them in advance

FD Lenox: I want to be careful here, but one of the Jane Does told the treatment provider she was not there due to actions of Mr. Ray -- Jane Doe's lawyer objects. Judge Liman: Let's go hypothetical. [He has another criminal proceeding at noon]

Larry Ray himself speaks up: "I have a question." FD Lenox: I think it's better you speak to me... I don't know if there's time... Could we address your question privately? Ray: OK.

AUSA Sassoon: If your Honor finds that the Nixon standard has not been satisfied, the records should not be produced to anyone. Doe's lawyer LaVerne wants already produced records to be sequestered - by both sides. It is so ordered.

Afterward Ray stayed on the call, saying, Hello? Hello? Inner City Press hung up.

   On September 4 the US Attorney's Office said in person legal visits in the MCC would re-start on September 21. This came in a proceeding that Inner City Press live tweeted, with notes on the (lack of) press and public access, the troubling creation of a "no-dissemination" category on which the press and public is not heard. See below.

On November 13, a Jane Doe filed this: "Re: United States v. Lawrence Ray, 20-CR-110 (LJL) Dear Judge Liman: I represent Jane Doe, a non-party granted leave to intervene in this matter. (See ECF Dkt. No. 70). On November 5, 2020, we received from the government copies of records it has obtained by grand jury subpoena from certain of Jane Doe’s medical providers. We had not previously been provided with these documents. Having reviewed them, it is apparent that they contain information that is privileged pursuant to the psychotherapist-patient privilege, a privilege that Jane Doe has not waived (see October 20, 2020 Reply Ltr. at 7-8) and which she continues to assert. Accordingly, we have asked the government and the defense (which apparently received these records in discovery) to sequester the records until the Court has heard argument on the pending motions to quash and had an opportunity to address this issue. We are also working to provide to the parties by early next week a version of the records indicating which portions we believe should be redacted as privileged. We would be happy to provide the same to the Court should it wish to receive them."  We'll have more on this.

 On October 22, the trial was pushed back, and the domain names will be sold by the US Marshals: "Reschedule Briefing as to Lawrence Ray.  The Court grants parties request for an adjournment of motion deadlines as follows: Defense motions due 12/7/2020; Government response due 1/8/2021; and Defense reply due 1/22/2021. The Jury Trial previously set for May 10, 2021 is RESCHEDULED to July 12, 2021 at 10:00AM. The Court excludes time under the Speedy Trial Act, 18 USC 3161(h)(7)(A) from October 22, 2020 to July 12, 2021 upon the findings that the ends of justice outweigh the interests of the defendant and the public in a speedy trial in that the time between now and July 12, 2021 is necessary for the parties to produce and review discovery and for the preparation of motions and for the preparation for trial (Signed by Judge Lewis J. Liman on 10/22/20) (jw)" and "MEMO ENDORSEMENT as to Lawrence Ray on re: [49] MOTION for an Order for the Interlocutory Sale of Property filed by USA. NOW, THEREFORE, IT IS ORDERED, ADJUDGED AND DECREED THAT The United States Marshals Service (the "USMS") or its designee, is authorized to conduct an interlocutory sale of the Domain Names. In furtherance of the interlocutory sale of the Domain Names, the Domain Names may be seized by the USMS pending the interlocutory sale, by service of this order on GoDaddy. RAY and any others, including, but not limited to, GoDaddy, shall fully cooperate with the USMS or its designee in relation to the seizure and interlocutory sale of the Domain Names."

On October 5, the US Attorney's office asked to quash Ray's Federal Defenders' subpoenas for victims' medical records, including therapy records, claiming "a potential violation of FRCP 17 and FRE 501."

 Federal Defenders disagreed, writing to Judge Liman that he has approved these subpoenas.

 On October 13, Judge Liman ruled: "in order to preserve the status quo pending receipt of the defense's papers in opposition, the Court ORDERS that compliance with the subpoenas identified at Dkt. No. 78-1 as well as all other subpoenas authorized for issuance by the Court's orders of September 18, 2020, be stayed. See United States v. Crutchfield, 2014 WL 2569058 (N.D. Cal. June 6, 2014). Defense counsel is ORDERED to inform the recipients of such orders that compliance with the Court's orders has been stayed. Because trial is not scheduled until May 10, 2021, the defense also will suffer no prejudice by a brief stay so the Court can consider the competing arguments. The Court denies without prejudice the Government's application to the extent that it seeks orders requiring the defense to inform it of the subpoena responses it has already received and to advise the Government of any other subpoenas it has served. The application is also denied insofar as it requires the defense to turn over any records it has received from any subpoenas of medical records. The Court will consider those applications after it has received a response from defense counsel. The Court does ORDER, however, that the subpoenaed materials be treated as sensitive under the protective order in this case pending a determination by the Court whether they were properly subpoenaed. SO ORDERED. (Signed by Judge Lewis J. Liman on 10/13/2020)."

  On September 11 the US Attorney's Office argued again that discovery is private, not for public review or transparency: "the defense has not proffered any basis to disregard the presumption that “discovery is a private process between the parties to an action,” and is “not presumptively accessible” to others. Smith, 985 F. Supp. 2d at 519." Inner City Press will continue to report on this case, and not just what the US Attorney's Office, which held a press conference announcing the indictment, wants the public to know about it.

 On September 14, Judge Liman ruled, including "Neither the Government proposal nor the defense proposal sufficiently captures the Court’s intention. The Government proposal would limit the protection of the protective order to information that could subject a person to intimidation or obstruction or risk of harm without protecting from broad disclosure information that substantially affects the privacy of an individual. It also provides no criteria for the Court to determine whether Disclosure Material is Sensitive or Confidential. The defense proposal addresses the flaws of the Government proposal but has two flaws of its own: the definition of Confidential Disclosure Material accords protection without the need for the Government to show a threat of intimidation or obstruction or risk of harm, but it limits the definition to information “that substantially affects witnesses’ privacy”. It does not address information that substantially affects the privacy of an individual who may not be a witness. The definition of Sensitive Disclosure Material would leave it entirely to the Government to determine whether disclosure would create a risk of intimidation or obstruction or harm without any requirement that the Government’s belief be well founded. It thus could defeat the objective of subjecting the designations to challenge and judicial review. In other respects the definition of Sensitive Disclosure Material provided by both sides is too narrow. Accordingly, the Court will adopt the defense proposal with the following edits: (1) the definition of “Sensitive Disclosure Material” should be amended to reach “information that affects the privacy of individuals, and identifies, or could lead to the identification of, witnesses who the Government has a well-founded belief may be subject to intimidation or obstruction, or whose lives, persons, and property, as well as the lives, persons and property of loved ones, the Government has a well-founded belief will be subject to risk of harm absent the protective considerations set forth herein.” and (3) the language “contains information that exposes personal information that substantially affects witnesses’ privacy” should be replaced with the language “contains information that exposes personal information that substantially affects the privacy of an individual.” 1 The Government proposal is also explicit in stating that the Government has the burden of establishing good cause for its designation of disclosure material as sensitive, but it is implicit always that the party who designates disclosure or discovery material under a protective order has the burden of establishing that the material was properly designated if the designation is challenged. Dkt. No. 55-2 ¶ 8.

The differences between paragraph 8 of the Government proposal and paragraph 9 of the defense proposal are minor: the Court always has the power to set a deadline for a response. The Court finds it easier to have a default date of seven days for a Government response absent a Court order for both types of challenges but will accord the Government more than seven days for a response upon application by the Government. 3. Finally, paragraph 6 of the Government’s proposed protective order should be revised to replace the language “Disclosure material” at the beginning of the first sentence with “Sensitive or confidential disclosure material.” The Government is ordered to submit a proposed amended protective order consistent with this Order by no later than September 18, 2020."

The September 4 thread:

Judge Liman says due to COVID pandemic and difficulties of Federal Defenders meeting with Ray, he's prepared to postpone trial past January 19. Also today: A request to release Ray on bail, to help prepare his defense.

 Judge Liman: The defense has raised serious concerns about Mr. Ray having access to discovery. For that reason, I'm going to defer ruling on release request until I hear and perhaps rule on issues of early disclosure of Brady and witness list and the like.

 Federal Defender Lenox: Our request as to the sensitive materials, we're not asking the court to rule piece by piece. There's only a small percentage in dispute. We are proposing a mechanism to rule on those so Mr Ray can see it if he stays in custody

FD: We agree that nude videos are sensitive. But we would ask the court to review handwritten confessions. These things are exculpatory.

 [Note: FD wants to use sealing of evidence as way to get Ray out of jail. Press has asked to UNseal the evidence - which would also take this "Free Larry Ray" argument off the table.]

The case is US v. Ray, 20-cr-110 (Liman).


Your support means a lot. As little as $5 a month helps keep us going and grants you access to exclusive bonus material on our Patreon page. Click here to become a patron.

Feedback: Editorial [at]
SDNY Press Room 480, front cubicle
500 Pearl Street, NY NY 10007 USA

Mail: Box 20047, Dag Hammarskjold Station NY NY 10017

Reporter's mobile (and weekends): 718-716-3540

Other, earlier Inner City Press are listed here, and some are available in the ProQuest service, and now on Lexis-Nexis.

 Copyright 2006-2020 Inner City Press, Inc. To request reprint or other permission, e-contact Editorial [at] for