NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - New developments in the rape cases, involving alleged accomplices to former saint star Darren Sharper.
Erik Nunez was locked up and taken to jail this morning in Orleans Criminal Court.
Meantime, about 3 hours later, Brandon Licciardi appeared in Federal Court.
They are the 2 people named with Darren Sharper, in new indictments, alleging aggravated rapes over a year ago. Erik Nunez was named in a new state indictment which came out Friday, charging him with 2 aggravated rapes, which allegedly occurred in
August, and September of 2013.
'Erik walked into court, and entered a plea of not guilty," said his attorney Jeffrey Smith.
But Nunez, never walked out. He was handcuffed, and taken to jail, after his attorneys challenged the case being allotted to Orleans criminal court judge Karen Herman.
"We just want things the right way, and then we will be happy with any judge, but it should be done in a random fashion," said Smith.
Nunez's attorney says the issue isn't really about judge Karen Herman, he says it's an issue of fairness.
It's a system which hundreds of other defendants have had to deal with over the last several years, but Smith says it's especially aggregious in this case.
Judge's are normally picked according to the date of the alleged crime. But Smith says this judge was picked according to the date of the crimes, allegedly committed by one of the other co-defendants.
"In a case like this, where there are lot of dates...with broad time periods from July 1st to August 30th...they can, in essence, pick whatever date, and assign a judge and choose a date," said Smith.
He says federal courts practice random allotment.
And that's where alleged co-defendant Brandon licciardi appeared Monday afternoon.
He resigned as a deputy with the St. Bernard parish sheriff's office on Friday, after a federal grand jury indicted him, along with Sharper, in an alleged drugs and sex scheme.
"My client pleaded 'not guilty' to these charges, because he didn't give any woman narcotics for the purpose of raping her," said Licciardi attorney Ralph Capitelli.
Licciardi, now being held in the St. Charles parish prison will return to court Thursday, in an effort to get his bond reduced.
Licciardi's bond is set at $2.9 million, which is higher than the $2.5 million bond set for Darren Sharper who was also indicted here Friday.
Sharper is being held on other sex charges, in the state of California.