Extra: After Fentanyl Death in Bronx Day Care 3d Man now in SDNY Mag Court Inner City Press There - more details here
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SDNY COURTHOUSE, Sept 25– Following the death of a one-year old baby by fentanyl, on September 19, 2023 the US Attorney for the Southern District of New York charged Grei Mendez and Carlisto Acevedo Brito.
On September 25, with no notice and Inner City Press initially the only person in the courtroom gallery, the third man was brought in: Renny Antonio Parra Paredes. Inner City Press live tweeted, thread:
Renny Antonio Parra Paredes is seated at defense table with assigned lawyer and SPanish interpretation headphones. Judge still not here but others coming
All rise! Mag Judge Ona T. Wang presiding. Arrest just after midnight on Sept 23, Saturday and waived speedy presentment. He is in a white T-shirt. CJA defense lawyer is appointed.
Judge Wang: You are charged with conspiracy to distribute narcotics. AUSA: We seek detention, and they consent. Defense lawyer: Most of his family is out of town. We consent.
Parra Paredes, in jean long shorts now without belt, us led out.
His lawyer asks,
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The charge was and is narcotics possession with intent to distribute resulting in death and conspiracy to distribute narcotics resulting in death in connection with the overdose of four children under the age of three, one of whom died, at a daycare facility in the Bronx on September 15, 2023.
Inner City Press went to the SDNY press conference and asked US Attorney Damian Williams if his office would be seeking pre-trial detention (yes) and if those upstream who sold the fentanyl would be charged with the death. No answer, at least not yet. Video here.
The duo was set to be presented in SDNY Magistrates Court, to which Inner City Press next turned. It was present there for hours. Thread here:
Brito is brought out, already in MDC tan uniform. At the prosecution table, AUSAs Margaret Lynaugh and Brandon Thompson. All rise! Magustrate Judge Jennifer WIllis now presiding in US v Brito
Brito is represented by CJA defense lawyer Calos Santiago [and not the private Bronx lawyer who's been buzzing around, more on whom anon] Judge: First, the financial affidavit...Is this information true? Brito: Si
Judge: You can have a free lawyer. You are charged in connection with a death. AUSA Thompson: We seek detention. Defense: We consent at this time.
Brito is lrd back into the holding cell [and later to MDC, where SBF is complaining about lack of vegan meals and fast enough laptop. Brito, it seems clear, will not be exempted from prisoner count like Sam is]
Now instead of Mendez, it's two other defendants This couple, the man is in a long sleave sweatshirt with Abercrombie written on it. Chinese interpreter hooking them up. Mendez later...
Judge: Has China been notified of their arrests? AUSA: Not yet. [As they get appointed counsel, fentanyl daycare Mendez' two relatives come in: niece and grandmother, Inner City Press is informed]
As to Hou and Lin, AUSA says they were arrested at JFK airport boarding a 1-way flight to China, and were discussing other fraudsters' arrests on WeChat
Defense lawyer says Lin bought this 1-way ticket to China a month ago, hardly indicative of sudden flight to evade the law. AUSA (backsliding) $50,000 bond would not be enough! Property as security is needed!
Judge Willis: They can be released on bond Meanwhile, another case has rolled into Mag Coury at 6 pm: a guilty plea "referred down by Judge Jed Rakoff, who had to go teach." But before that, fenntanyl daycare Mendez
OK - now fentanyl daycare Ms Mendez has been brought out. She is crying. "Her eldest daughter and mother are her," Federal Defender says. He gets appointed based on financial affidavit. [Inner City Press got Michael Avenatti's affidavit unsealed, fwiw]
AUSA: We are seeking detention. Federal Defender: We seek bail. AUSA: There were 3 kilo presses, and 1 kilo of fentanyl in the daycare. A 1-year old was killed, 3 others hospitalized.
AUSA: She called her husband to alert him. And he has already fled. Federal Defender: Ms Mendez is a 36 year old legal resident. She worked in a restaurant. She is a single custodial parent, now that her husband has fled.
Federal Defender: She called 911 almost immediately. Did she freak out and call her husband first? Yes. They have no evidence she knew.
Federal Defender: We say, free her on $100,000 bond, no more employment in childcare.
Judge: I have no questions. AUSA: She could flee to DR to see her kids. As she couldn't in prison. She deleted 25,000 messages with her husband while in the police precinct
Federal Defender: Maybe she deleted messages because they were intimate. The state case could be dismissed.Federal Defender: She called 911 within ten seconds.
Judge: I am going to detain you. Mendez: Aye, no! [crying]
Federal Defender goes back on the record to say she has diabetes. Both sides agree: she will be in MDC
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The case is US v. Mendez, et al., 23-mj-6461 (Willis)
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Feedback: Editorial [at] innercitypress.com
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