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Man accused of kidnapping held on $150,000 bond

A Union City, New Jersey, man is facing a series of felony charges in connection with an alleged kidnapping that occurred earlier this month. The man, age 30, has been accused of abducting a child from her apartment in his building. He faces formal charges of child abuse and criminal restraint, along with possession of a controlled substance and lewdness. Media reports have not disclosed the potential sentences associated with each of the charges, though the man is currently being held on $150,000 bond, according to authorities.

Prosecutors have accused the man of taking the 5-year-old girl from her home on Manhattan Avenue, spiriting her away to his basement apartment in the same building. While in his home, the man allegedly exposed the lower half of his body to the girl, forcing her to remove her pants and recline on the couch. Authorities report that they also found a controlled substance that they believe to be cocaine during the efforts to recover the girl. The man appeared to have been under the influence of a narcotic at the time of the events.

The man's public defender appears to be experiencing initial success in securing certain benefits for his client. First, the prosecutor in the case sought to have the man's bond set at $400,000. The man's attorney argued that the suspect was not a flight risk, largely because of his family ties to the community. As a result, the bond was lowered by more than half.

Media reports have not disclosed whether the man intends to plead guilty to the charges he faces. A guilty plea could provide additional benefits for the suspect, including decreased prison time and even the dismissal of some charges. Plea bargains can allow all parties to involve a drawn-out courtroom battle, which can be traumatic not only for the suspect but also for potential victims in the case. A guilty plea would be appropriate if the man's attorney discovers that the prosecutors have a significant amount of evidence to convict.

Source: The Jersey Journal, "'Half-naked' Union City man accused of kidnapping 5-year-old girl held on $150,000 bail," Daniel Reyes, Jan. 22, 2013.

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