Drug suspects’ attorney argues to have amount of bond reduced

Asia Ashley Staff Writer

August 27, 2013

In Troup County Superior Court Monday, the attorney of two charged with trafficking methamphetamine argued to get his clients’ large bond amount reduced.

Public Defender Ken Gordon argued that his clients Geovani Bautista-Liborio, 30, and Martin Bautista-Liborio, 28, charged with trafficking methamphetamine and held on $500,000 bond at the Troup Count Jail, have the largest bond for a drug charge that he has ever encountered.

“This $500,000 bond is the highest that I’ve seen out of all the cases I’ve represented in my legal career,” said Gordon.

The Bautistas were arrested in October 2012 for allegedly trafficking approximately 800 grams of methamphetamine to a Raceway during a set up delivery by the LaGrange Police Department, the Muscogee County Sheriff’s Office, Troup County Sheriffs Office and the federal Drug Enforcement Administration.

Gordon mentioned to Judge William Hamrick that in his research, he found that the bond range for other similar drug charges through out the country have ranged from $20,000 to $100,000, which includes a New Mexico man caught with 44 pounds of cocaine and 1.42 pounds of methamphetamine and was released on a $50,000 bond.

“I believe my clients are entitled to a reasonable bond in this case,” said Gordon. “Something in the $50,000-$100,000 range would be reasonable.”

The Bautistas, though illegal aliens, have lived in Atlanta for 10 years and have been productive members of society, said Gordon. They both finished high school and at least three years of college.

Bond would allow Geovani time to be with his wife and two young children and Martin to continue working in construction and to spend time with his family.

Prosecuting attorney Melissa Himes, however, feared that the Bautistas would attempt to flee or would be deported by ICE (Immigration and Customs Enforcement) if bonded, and would prevent their prosecution process in Troup County.

Gordon stated that his clients have never been deported or fled from the country.

Hamrick, filling in for Judge Emory Palmer who originally set the bond, rescheduled the bond hearing for a date in which Palmer would be available, to avoid “second-guessing” another judge’s decision.