Prosecution rests in 'cannibal cop' case

March 5, 2013 at 8:19 AM   |   Comments

NEW YORK, March 5 (UPI) -- A New York City judge said he would not immediately rule on the defense's request to acquit the so-called "cannibal cop" after the prosecution rested its case.

Lawyers for former New York City police officer Gilberto Valle were expected to begin presenting their case Tuesday after the prosecution rested Monday, The New York Times reported.

Valle, a married dad and 6-year NYPD veteran, was arrested in October on charges of planning to kidnap, rape, cook and eat women with conspirators he met through an online fetish website.

Defense attorney Edward Zas said Monday Valle should be immediately acquitted because, while prosecutors proved his client engaged in graphic conversations on the Internet, "engaging in very ugly conversations is not what he's charged with."

"He's charged with engaging in a criminal conspiracy to kidnap, and on that charge, there is insufficient evidence to sustain a guilty verdict," Zas said.

Prosecutor Hadassa Waxman argued evidence showed Valle was involved in surveillance of potential victims and illegally accessed law enforcement databases to conduct research on them.

The defense's request for acquittal "should be denied in its entirety," Waxman said.

Defense lawyer Julia Gatto told U.S. District Judge Paul G. Gardephe she expects a decision will be made Tuesday as to whether Valle will testify.

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