Jeffrey Hurant issued a statement following today’s hearing, “I was not alone as I faced the frightening judicial juggernaut.”
In Federal Court this morning, Hurant pleaded not guilty. A magistrate judge was informed by Federal prosecutor Tyler Smith that Hurant would like to resolve the case quickly and has been engaged in plea negotiations with the government. Hurant is being represented by defense attorney Michael Tremonte of Sher Tremonte LLP in New York. Tremonte was a former Federal prosecutor.
This is a very encouraging turn of events for Hurant. Many feared that the indictment was a signal that initial efforts at a plea deal in his case may have failed, or been ignored.
How this effects the six other former Rentboy employees named in the original complaint — Shane Lukas (Hawk Kincaid), Marco Decker, Sean Belman (Sean Van Sant), Edward Estanol (Eli Lewis), Diana Milagros Mattos (Coco Lopez), and Clint Calero remains to be seen. Reuters reported the criminial complaints against them are still pending.
Hurant, after the hearing today, posted on Facebook, “I want to thank everyone who braved the cold today and showed support at the courthouse.”
“I am humbly grateful for your efforts today,” Hurant said. “Your faces made me feel that I was not alone as I faced the frightening judicial juggernaut. I will be eternally grateful for that. I wish for support, strength and peace for everyone enduring struggles today and everyday.”
The next court date is a status conference set for March 15.
The now unsealed indictment can be viewed here.
Stay tuned to The Sword as we continue to update this breaking story.