United States District Court, S.D. New York
OPINION AND ORDER
G. SCHOFIELD, DISTRICT JUDGE
Ludwig Criss Zelaya-Romero moves for orders directing the
Government to investigate whether his interrogation in
Honduras was recorded and to produce the documents underlying
his extradition. He also moves for a ninety-day continuance
of the deadline to file non-discovery pretrial motions. As
discussed below, these motions are denied, except that
Zelaya-Romero shall have fourteen additional days to refile a
motion to suppress his statements to law enforcement.
was extradited to the United States from Honduras, and made
his initial appearance on December 14, 2016. The Superseding
Indictment alleges that Zelaya-Romero used his position as
member of the Honduran National Police to facilitate safe
passage through Honduras for multi-hundred-kilogram shipments
of cocaine bound for the United States. Zelaya-Romero, along
with two co-defendants, will stand trial on May 14, 2018.
August 23, 2017, the Court appointed new counsel at
Zelaya-Romero's request. At the same time, the Court
denied without prejudice a motion to suppress that had been
filed by Zelaya-Romero's first attorney. The motion
sought to suppress statements Zelaya-Romero made to the DEA
in the American embassy in Honduras. The Court informed
Zelaya-Romero that he could file a new motion to suppress or
ask the Court to reinstate the initial motion.
date, Zelaya-Romero has not resubmitted his motion to
suppress nor filed any other non-discovery pretrial motions.
Over the course of the tenure of both of his lawyers,
Zelaya-Romero has received six extensions of the deadline to
file non-discovery motions:
1. From March 3, 2017, to March 16, 2017.
2. From March 16, 2017, to June 23, 2017.
3. From June 23, 2017, to August 15, 2017.
4. From August 15, 2017, to September 22, 2017.
5. From September 22, 2017, to October 23, 2017.
6. From October 23, 2017, to November 27, 2017.
last three extensions were each between thirty and
thirty-five days, granted at the request of his counsel.
After granting the last extension, the Court warned that
“no further extensions will be granted absent
extraordinary circumstances.” On November 27, 2017,
Zelaya-Romero requested a seventh extension of ninety
additional days, which the Government opposes. Zelaya-Romero
also moved for orders directing the government to investigate
whether tape recordings exist of his interrogation in
Honduras and to produce the documents submitted to the
Honduran government in order to procure his extradition.