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Thursday, August 23, 2007

Premlinary Hearing Day Two

Update Two Charges Dropped: The burglary charges and the conspiracy to commit burglary charges were dropped.

Grant Roy, was the first to testify in Day two of the preliminary hearing. He is an adult film producer in California, he testified to conversations he had with Joseph Kerekes and Harlow Cuadra the two men accused in the killing gay twink porn film producer Bryan Kocis. For 1 hour and 16 minutes, Grant Roy testified as a prosecution witness during the preliminary hearing for Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes. Roy, the first witness to testify on the second day of the hearing, admitted that he knew investigators were electronically recording the conversation he had with Cuadra and Kerekes. The conversation took place at Blacks Beach near San Diego, Calif., in April where Cuadra , Kerekes, Lockhart and Roy talked about the murder. Prior to taking the witness stand, Roy said he reviewed a transcript of a recording investigators made at a nude beach where Cuadra and Kerekes allegedly admitted to being inside Kocis' home on Jan. 24. His testimony followed what was said in the affidavit quite well

Grant Roy, testified the two men (Caudra and Kerekes) who are accused of killing the Bryan kocis in January described the interior of his home and described details of how the murder transpired. But, Roy also testified that neither Cuadra nor Kerekes ever specifically admitted to committing the crime, but referenced it in vague terms. Roy testified that "Harlow said Bryan never saw it coming". "He said it sounded sick, but it made him feel good in a way, like he got even." Roy said Harlow and Joe, inspected Bryan's Midland Drive home before Harlow arrived for his scheduled meeting with Bryan Kocis on Jan. 24. Roy testified "...they also made an observation that there was no peep hole in the door so the only way Bryan could see who was at the front door was to open the front door," Roy testified to questions asked by Luzerne County Assistant District Attorney Michael Melnick. Roy testified. He said Harlow told him he shared a bottle of wine with Kocis, but Kocis drank most of the bottle.

Roy also testified, Harlow said he arranged a meeting with Kocis by saying he was interested in modeling for him. Roy then said Harlow became worried that Bryan recognized who he really was, but then the doorbell rang. "At that time, Brian got up, stumbled to the door, and that was it," Cuadra said. "It went really quick." Roy’s testimony seems to have placed Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes in the home of Brian Charles Kocis the night the adult film producer was murdered. Roy said Cuadra and Kerekes had indicated that authorities wouldn't take the investigation seriously because Kocis was gay. Roy testified that "They felt...because Bryan was gay, the Dallas Township Police Department would put it on the back burner," Roy testified.
Roy said Cuadra and Kerekes had stolen records from Kocis' company, Cobra Video, pornographic DVDs, three computer towers, two laptop computers and Kocis' Rolex watch.

Roy further testified that Cuadra "incinerated" the items because Cuadra considered them "too hot," in which, would link Cuadra to the murder.
On cross-examination by Cuadra's lawyer, William Ruzzo, Roy said he never directly asked Cuadra and Kerekes if they killed Kocis. Roy also testified that neither Cuadra nor Kerekes ever specifically admitted to committing the crime at 60 Midland Drive in Dallas Township, but referenced it in vague terms.
Roy remained composed during his testimony, carefully answering questions from Luzerne County Assistant District Attorney Michael Melnick, and defense lawyers Frank Nocito and William Ruzzo.

State police Trooper Brian Murphy, testifying during the preliminary hearing for Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes, said an e-mail account of was set up Jan. 22 using an IP address registered to Cuadra. The IP address registered to Cuadra was also traced as the source where pictures of Cuadra were sent to Kocis' company, Cobra Video. Kocis' company received an application from a person who identified himself as Danny Moilin on Jan. 22, the same day was established under Cuadra's registered IP address. The application was for a new model for Cobra Video. Soon after the application was submitted, Kocis and Moilin began emailing one another setting up an appointment. Murphy said he was also able to trace e-mail communications from through an IP address using a wireless air card beginning on Jan. 23.

Investigators believe Cuadra identified himself as Danny Moilin in an attempt to disguise his true identity. Brian Murphy testified, Kocis exchanged about three dozen emails from an account with an IP address registered to Cuadra. Some of the emails included what appeared to be pictures of Cuadra, although the author of the emails identified himself as Danny Moilin. Murphy said the e-mail was used to communicate with Kocis between Jan. 22 and Jan. 24. Trooper Brian Murphy, testified the e-mail account was solely used to communicate with Bryan and was last used on Jan. 25, a day after Kocis was found dead inside his Dallas Township home. Murphy also testified that it was through these emails, Kocis and Danny made arrangements to meet the night of the murder, the investigator said. The last communication occurred around 7:15 p.m., about an hour before firefighters responded to a structure fire at Kocis' home and found him inside slashed and stabbed to death.
Murphy also testified that an e-mail registered to Joseph Kerekes was logged onto at 7:43 p.m. on Jan. 24, around the time when a witness saw a light colored sport utility vehicle in the driveway at Bryan Kocis' Dallas Township home.
Trooper Brian Murphy said the e-mail registered to Kerekes, 33, was accessed through a wireless air card registered to Harlow Cuadra.
Kerekes' co-defense lawyer, Joseph Nocito, was able to determine, upon questioning of Murphy, that Kerekes' e-mail was accessed at 7:43 p.m. on Jan. 24.
During a jailhouse interview in July, said he was at the Fox Ridge Inn motel in Plains Township using his e-mail account.

State Police CPL. Leo Hannon testified about a Surveillance video from a Virginia Beach, Va., pawn shop that shows Harlow Cuadra and Joseph Kerekes allegedly buying weapons on Jan. 23, a day before Bryan Kocis was killed in Dallas Township. In one of the videos, Cuadra, 26, and Kerekes, 33, are standing with their backs to the camera looking into a glass display case. State police Cpl. Leo Hannon Jr. said a receipt - time stamped at 9:44 a.m. on Jan. 23 - was for the purchase of a Smith and Wesson handgun, ammunition and a folding knife with a five-inch blade. Luzerne County Coroner Dr. Jack Consalvo earlier had testified that he believed at a minimum a three-inch smooth-edged knife was used in the murder. A knife was found inside Kocis' home.

Hannon said Cuadra rented a silver Nissan Xterra from a Virginia Beach car rental business on Jan. 23. Hannon said. The mileage out was 21,357 and had 22,409 miles on it when it was returned on Jan. 25. Hannon said the distance between Virginia Beach where Cuadra and Kerekes resides to the Greater Wilkes-Barre area is 770 miles driving along the coast and 900 miles driving through central Virginia.

State police Cpl. Leo Hannon Jr. testified that signals from two cell phones registered to Joseph Kerekes were processed through a cellular tower on Country Club Road in Dallas Township, a short distance from the Midland Drive home of Bryan Kocis, Hannon said the calls were made at 8:34 p.m. (actually it was 8:37pm when the fire was reported) on Jan. 24, the exact same time firefighters were dispatched to Kocis' home for a fire. Kocis was found dead by firefighters on a couch inside his home. Hannon said two neighbors - who live on Midland Drive - identified the color, manufacturer and model of a Nissan Xterra, the same vehicle Cuadra had rented in Virginia Beach on Jan. 23 and returned two days later. The sport utility vehicle was seen by neighbors at Kocis' home on Jan. 24.

Well it looks like Joseph Kerekes and Harlow Cuadra will be bound over and face criminal homicide and related charges in connection to the slaying of local gay porn producer Bryan Kocis in Luzerne County Court of Common Pleas.
District Judge James E. Tupper held the charges against Harlow Cuadra, 26, and Joseph Kerekes, 33, to court after a two-day preliminary hearing.
Investigators allege the two men killed Kocis whom they considered their main rival in the gay pornographic production business.

Assistant District Attorneys Michael Melnick and Tim Doherty prosecuted.
Attorneys Frank Nocito and Joseph Nocito represent Kerekes.
Attorneys William Ruzzo and Thomas Cometa represent Cuadra.
Cuadra and Kerekes remain jailed without bail.

Thanks to the Times Leader and the Citizens Voice for the information in this post.

This is elmysterio and I'm out


  1. As to the charges that were dropped, it has been stated that no evidence was presented that Joe or Harlow stole anything from the Kocis house. That is not correct they had 3 witnesess testify to items being missing from the residence. Robert Wagner testified that he was working on updating Bryan's computer records and that his 2 laptops and 2 computer towers were missing as well as a Rolex watch. Michael Kocis the victims father also testifird to the same as well as the insurance adjuster. The burglary charges did not stick because there was not enough evidence plain and simple.

  2. There are rumors being shot around about a deal by the prosecuters. At this time I can attest that this is not the case as I have recieved this information from someone close to the case.

  3. I was blog slumming over in the snake pit or as I like to refer to it as JuicyGoo II. And they were licking their wounds after their crushing defeat yesterday when Grant Roy turned out to be the prosecutions star witness. So the score is Cobrakiller 1 BB 0. I know it must be painful but they have maintained they’re vile hatred throughout all of this. They’re alignment with another Internet blog fly is quite telling. Spread more lies to hide the truth. They can not deal with the fact that they could not destroy the reputations of Grant Roy and Sean Lockhart. It seems that the only witness with credibility issues was their own golden boy Robert Wagner AKA Aaron “Bryans best friend”. Robert who only testified for ten minutes on the witness stand compared to Grant Roy who was on the stand for more than an hour. The prosecution truly limited the scope of Robert’s testimony. This was so that the defense could not get more information on cross. Why was that you ask? Because Robert Wagner is not the best person to be a prosecution witness because he was too involved in the seedier side of the Kocis porn empire. He is privy to all of the skeletons and he is also being investigated for other crimes that he has committed while in the employ of Cobra video. So we will have to wait and see what will happen in the future, I will guarantee you it will not be pretty.

  4. Elm,

    Hee hee, wasn't I (and others, like Albert) supposed to be pissed off yesterday? And/or on Monday? It was predicted I was gonna be pissed off at some big anti-Sean surprise at the preliminary hearing.

    I wonder, Albert...are we STILL supposed to be pissed off today? Or was this just supposed to be a one-day pisser-offer?

    And BTW...have we figured out yet what we are supposed to be pissed off at? :-)

    And Elm...interesting point about that Robert testamony...only 10 minutes? And he was scheduled as the last witness of the day no less, when everyone was hungry and wanting to go to dinner...less chance of getting seriously cross-examined then, I suppose.

    What was it about Robert Wagner that the DA was so nervous of, that he only gives him 10 measily minutes at the end of the first day? I wonder...

  5. Because Jim after all the months that Robert claimed Grant would be an "unreliable" witness, someone who Robert claims "Has Blood on his hands" it turns out Robert Wagner was the witness Melnick had little confidence in.

    Maybe because Melnick has learned more about Robert, his complicity in Bryans crimes and the legal cloud hanging over Robert Wagner.

    Robert remaining "free of prosecution" for several federal charges is in doubt! Would a PA Prosecutor want to rely on a witness who may be facing charges by the trial?

    You only get one "get of jail" card. Robert already used his!

  6. I for one don't believe most of this shit. The fact that Roberts testimony was not that pivitol says allot. He was not crucial to the case as the only thing he testified to, the theft of the items from the house or the burgulary. Those charges were dropped oops. Well I wonder what other crucial testimony he will have at the trial. Maybe then all of the other charges will be dropped. The fact is he is too involved in the affiars of Cobra Video and he is complicate in most of the crimes commited by them. something else that I find strange is that the prosecution allowed the crime scene to be destroyed. During the cross examination of the fire marshall he said that he took no evidence of arson form the house. he did not even check the smoke detectors or check them for Batteries. Also it was reported that if the front door of the house was closed there would be no evidence.

  7. Actually Elm, their still being charges with Robbery and Theft by Unlawful Taking.

  8. What did they reinstate the charges? Or are these differnet form the ones that were dropped?

  9. Magisterial District Judge James E. Tupper forwarded nearly all the charges against Cuadra and Kerekes to the Luzerne County Court of Common Pleas except for charges of burglary and conspiracy to commit burglary.

    The two still face charges of homicide, robbery, arson, abuse of corpse and conspiracy to commit murder.

    This is from the times leader. the article you have linked to your blog I guess the judge chaged his mind about the buglary charges.

  10. Perhaps you'd like to read the article again:

    They each face charges of criminal homicide, conspiracy to commit homicide, liability for the conduct of another, robbery, theft, tampering with evidence, abuse of corpse, conspiracy to commit robbery, conspiracy to commit tampering with evidence, conspiracy to commit arson and two counts of arson.

  11. Elm,

    Maybe you are conflating burglary with robbery.
    Common law burglary is to break into the dwelling house of another in the nighttime with the intent to commit another crime. Robbery is the use of force or fear unlawfully to take the property of another. State statutes expand the scope of each of these. Burglary is breaking in. Robbery is using force or fear.

  12. I don't get it PC what is the problem? the article says the same charges that I quoted on my blog. Why do you have a issue with it?

  13. Maybe the burglary charges got dropped because there was no breaking in (ie, Harlow was let in, as was Joe when he rang the bell)?

    Not that this really matters much, I mean, burglary compared to 1st degree murder, cmon...

  14. Here's the PA definition of Burglary...note that it does not apply if you were licensed to enter (ie, you showed up for an appointment, or you rang the bell and were let in). THIS EXPLAINS THE DISMISSAL. It was on this hyper-legal technical ground, no doubt..and appears to have been a correct call by the magistrate:

    § 3502. Burglary.
    (a) Offense defined.--A person is guilty of burglary if he enters a building or occupied structure, or separately secured or occupied portion thereof, with intent to commit a crime therein, unless the premises are at the time open to the public or the actor is licensed or privileged to enter.

    (b) Defense.--It is a defense to prosecution for burglary that the building or structure was abandoned.

    (c) Grading.--

    Except as provided in paragraph 2, burglary is a felony of the first degree.
    If the building, structure or portion entered is not adapted for overnight accommodation and if no individual is present at the time of entry, burglary is a felony of the second degree.

    (d) Multiple convictions.--A person may not be convicted both for burglary and for the offense which it was his intent to commit after the burglarious entry or for an attempt to commit that offense, unless the additional offense constitutes a felony of the first or second degree.