Cleveland Kidnapper Ariel Castro Plans to Plead Not Guilty

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This undated photo released by the Cleveland Police Department shows Ariel Castro. Three women who disappeared in Cleveland a decade ago were found safe Monday, May 8, 2013 and police arrested three brothers, including Castro, accused of holding the victims against their will.
This undated photo released by the Cleveland Police Department shows Ariel Castro. Three women who disappeared in Cleveland a decade ago were found safe Monday, May 8, 2013 and police arrested three brothers, including Castro, accused of holding the victims against their will. Photo: Cleveland Police Department

The 329-count indictment issued Friday by a Cuyahoga County grand jury against the former school bus driver includes 139 counts of rape and 177 counts of kidnapping in connection with the abduction and horrifying decade-long imprisonment of Cleveland women Gina DeJesus, Michelle Knight, and Amanda Berry. However, Castro's defense attorney, Jaye M. Schlachet, told Reuters, "The indictment is being reviewed and a 'not guilty' plea will be entered at the scheduled arraignment" set to take place next week. The 52-year-old is being held in jail on $8 million bond with more charges expected, as the current indictment only includes the period between August 2002, when Knight disappeared, to February 2007.