A Superior Court judge on Friday denied a request to move the trial of two men accused in a string of firebombings targeting Bergen County’s Jewish community, and rejected a bid to remove the county prosecutor’s office from the case.
“There is no indication that the jury pool has been tainted, or so tainted that the defendant can’t get a fair and impartial jury,” Judge Edward Jerejian said at a hearing for Aakash Dalal, one of the men charged in the attacks, NorthJersey.com reported.
Dalal’s attorney, Brian Neary, also asked that the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office be pulled from the trial because his client was accused of plotting to kill Assistant Prosecutor Martin Delaney, who was assigned to the case but is reportedly no longer involved with the prosecution.
Allegations also emerged that Dalal made threats against judges Patrick Roma and Liliana DeAvila-Silebi, the report said.
Defense attorney Ian Silvera, who represents Dalal’s co-defendant Anthony Graziano, said he joined in the motion filed by Dalal’s attorney, according to the report.
Prosecutors alleged Graziano carried out the bombings in 2012 under the direction of Dalal. The attacks began with anti-Semitic vandalism at congregations in Hackensack and Maywood and turned violent with the fiery attacks in Rutherford and Paramus, authorities have said.
In one attack, Graziano is accused of throwing a molotov cocktail into the home of a Rutherford rabbi while his family slept inside.