Suspect in Abduction Pleads Guilty

Lawyer Anthony Douglas Rappaport speaks at a news conference with his clients Denise Huskins and her boyfriend Aaron Quinn right in San Francisco Thursday Sept. 29 2016. Matthew Muller a disbarred Harvard University-trained attorney pleaded guilty

Muller's attorney, Tom Johnson. "Because not in their wildest imagination could ... a woman who had just been held for two days, possibly want her father before seeing a cop", the attorney said, while Huskins silently staved off tears, standing behind him.

"Mr. Muller wanted to resolve the case".

When that will be is not certain.

Rappaport insisted that U.S. District Judge Troy Nunley now has the choice of giving Muller a "simple slap on the wrist" or making sure he spends his life imprisoned. "He violated the sanctity of their home and caused fear and panic for all those affected by the kidnapping", said acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert.

"It's been an unfortunate bonding experience", during which Huskins and Quinn have "exhibited tremendous strength", Rappaport said. Her boyfriend, Aaron Quinn, said kidnappers broke into the couple's Vallejo, California, home, took Huskins and demanded $8,500 as a ransom a figure that police have said they found small for what would have been an elaborate kidnapping.

Under the plea deal, federal prosecutors agreed to seek no more than 40 years in prison, but Muller's attorney, Thomas Johnson, said he fears U.S. District Judge Troy Nunley will impose a life term when Muller is sentenced on January 19.

Marianne Quinn, mother of Aaron Quinn, said outside the courtroom that she was pleased with a tougher recommended sentence than she had expected.

After Dublin police tracked Muller through a cellphone he left behind at the robbery scene, the Federal Bureau of Investigation connected him to the Vallejo kidnapping through evidence found at Muller's mother's home in South Lake Tahoe.

During the kidnapping Muller put blackened swim goggles over the eyes of Huskins and Quinn and headphones over their ears to play a recorded warning that Huskins' face would be cut or she would be hurt with an electric shock if they didn't comply, according to court documents.

Rappaport said Vallejo police told Huskins to take a shower and change into the same clothes she was wearing. She added that once the federal case against Muller is complete her office still could file charges. He is a former Marine and Harvard-trained attorney who practiced immigration law in San Francisco.

"I've known Matt since he was born; (this is) totally out of his character, what took place", Reed said.

Speaking in a strong, calm voice like the lawyer he once was, Muller told the judge that he understood the nature of the proceedings, and Nunley said he was satisfied that Muller understood "quite clearly" what was happening. Muller previously pleaded not guilty to a kidnapping charge that prosecutors say stemmed from his abduction of Huskins from her Vallejo home in March 2015.

Muller was never charged with rape. Muller, a disbarred Harvard University-trai.

The weird nature of the case has attracted national attention, and a battery of television cameras crowded around people close to the families of Muller and the victims after Thursday's hearing.

Vallejo police said they were initially skeptical of Huskins' abduction because they didn't believe Quinn's version of events, including that he had been drugged by intruders, according to a July court filing.

Muller released Huskins in the southern California city of Huntington Beach after holding her captive for two days and no ransom was paid, prosecutors said.



Other news