crimes and misdemeanors

Cannibal Cop Lawyer Suggests Feds Misinterpreted Gruesome Chats

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After two days of testimony about Gilberto Valle’s plans to kidnap, kill, and eat his wife and other women in his life, things finally started looking up for the so-called “Cannibal Cop” on Wednesday when the defense cross-examined FBI agent Corey Walsh. Investigators say that Valle plotted crimes with three of his online friends, but exchanges with 21 other people were just fantasy role play. While questioning Walsh, Valle’s lawyer, Robert Baum, suggested that since his client shared the same made-up details about himself in many of the chats, the government’s distinction between intent and fantasy was totally arbitrary.

The Daily News reports that Baum asked the agent if Valle actually owned items discussed in the chats, like an oversize suitcase for transporting his victims, a secluded house upstate, or a rope-and-pulley system in his basement. The answer to each question was no. Baum also noted that the FBI didn’t conduct surveillance on Valle in the weeks after his wife contacted the agency, and they never checked his trunk for DNA, though he’d talked about putting a body in the trunk of his car.

Valle said in several chats that cannibalism was just a fantasy. In one message he said it’s “fun to chat and push the envelope.” When asked how many people he’d killed and eaten, he said “in my imagination a lot. Haha.”

Another good sign for Valle: Jurors don’t appear to be horrified by the gruesome testimony — and in fact they might be bored. The Post reports that “the jury mostly sat stone-faced and silent” this week as it was revealed that Valle discussed using a victim’s head as a centerpiece and said he was “dying to taste some girl meat.” While his online exchanges were read on Thursday, three jurors yawned.

Cannibal Cop Lawyer: Feds Misinterpreted Chats