The federal court has granted a sex trafficking suspect’s request to postpone her jury trial currently set for Oct. 28, 2013, to give her more time to prepare her defense.
U.S. District Court for the NMI Chief Judge Ramona Manglona reset the jury trial for Annette Nakatsukasa Basa to Jan. 27, 2014.
Manglona also approved Basa’s request for a court-provided Chamorro interpreter.
After Friday’s hearing, Basa was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshal.
Basa’s court-appointed counsel, Steven Pixley, said that his client is charged with very serious offenses that expose her to substantial prison time.
Pixley said that Basa has been provided with substantial discovery documents and that the U.S. government continues to provide discovery to Basa.
“The preparation for trial in this matter will require a considerable time. In addition, Ms. Basa anticipates asking the court to permit her to retain experts for the trial,” the lawyer said.
Basa is charged with two counts of sex trafficking of children. She pleaded not guilty.
The indictment alleged that on April 1, 2013, Basa recruited and enticed two female minors to engage in a “commercial sex act.”
Basa allegedly offered the two girls to firefighter Richard Benavente in exchange for methamphetamine or “ice” and money. Benavente is also facing charges in federal court.