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In SDNY Sex Trafficking Defendant Valdez Is Bailed Out And Told To Advertise No More

By Matthew Russell Lee, Exclusive Patreon

SDNY COURTHOUSE, Nov 15 – Charged with advertising sex for money with a child in the Fordham section of The Bronx, Michael Valdez and Ryan Diaz were presented on November 12 before Magistrate Judge Katharine H. Parker of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

   Inner City Press, the only media in the SDNY Magistrates Court for this proceeding on November 12 was in the gallery with family and supporters of the defendants, who said they were from 184th Street by Ryer Avenue.

   The complaint describes the Victim held and beaten in an apartment "near 184th Street," and advertised online.

    Judge Parker admonished the defendants that they could not take out such ads while out on bond, or ask others to take out such ads for them. Michael Valdez was ordered released on $50,000 bond, when conditions were met (see below). Ryan Diaz, with CJA counsel James Branden, was detained with consent. The case is US v. Valdez and Robles, 19-mj-10616 (Parker).

  On November 15, District Judge Paul G. Gardephe conducted a de novo review and vacated Magistrate Judge Parker's order; he ordered Valdez remanded to detention.

  Before the proceeding began, Valdez told a child in the gallery, again with Inner City Press the only media present, "Daddy will be home soon, don't worry."

  Then the government and Judge Gardephe recited the allegations in the complaint: pursuing the victim with a gun and a syringe, fleeing to Pennsylvania and buying ammunition in a Wal-Mart, running across roofs in the Bronx. Then there were the four separate complaints of domestic violence against Valdez this year.

  Valdez' Federal Defender pointed out that those charged had been dropped. Judge Gardephe vacated Judge Parker's order, leaving the wiggle room that he did it become the idea of Valdez staying with his mother rather than the domestic violence complainant changed things.

  But he did not invite a new application. Then again, Gardephe did this as the "Part I" judge, so perhaps another District Judge will get the Federal Defenders' re-application for release on bond. Watch this site.

    But earlier in the day it emerged that the US Attorney for the SDNY, in the case of Warren Bryant, simply dropped sex trafficking charges and made a plea deal for narcotics. Is that the new M.O., following the Office's laissez faire approach to the UN corruption of Antonio Guterres? Watch this site. 

   Warren Bryant was charged with sex trafficking, transportation for prostitution and narcotics conspiracy in January 2019 by the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York.

   But on November 12 when Warren Bryant came before SDNY Judge Analisa Torres with Inner City Press the only media in the gallery, as it had been on Bryant's previous appearance, the US Attorney had made a plea agreement only on narcotics conspiracy, for 10 years imprisonment, with the sex trafficking charges dropped.

    Judge Torres asked if Bryant's allocution, limited to narcotics, was sufficient, and was told that it was. She summoned the lawyers including Bryant's Federal Defender Clay Kaminsky, up to the front for a whispered sidebar from which the word "victim" or "victims" could not be missed.

     It gave rise to an obvious question: if victims are supposed to be informed, particularly under the Trafficking Victims Protection Act, what happens if the US Attorney simply drops the trafficking charges? Do the victims get notice of this important decision? It does not appear so.

    Judge Torres accepted the plea - Inner City Press can think of at least one SDNY Judge who might not have - and set sentencing for March 16 at 2 pm. Perhaps these issues will be addressed at that time. The case is US v. Bryant, 19-cr-00006 (Torres).


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