The dubbed “cannibal cop” trial is making national headlines today as Yahoo! News reported this Tuesday, March 5, that jurors in a major New York trial that have seen testimony and graphic images of sexual violence against women in the case experienced an alleged “dose of comic relief” through a Russian Web site this week that was compared to a “naughty” Facebook.
Lawyers for New York Police Officer Gilberto Valle, the alleged "cannibal cop", started their defense this morning with a strange testimony from the founder of DarkFetishNet.com, who often linked his sexually violent and fantasy role-play site to that of Facebook.
"It's a social media network very similar to Facebook," Sergay Merenkov, 34, said in describing how the site works.
"It does everything that Facebook does," he said during a deposition videotaped in Moscow and played for the federal court jury on Tuesday.
The police officer called the "cannibal cop" is currently on trial in a conspiracy to kidnap, cook and then eat women. Authorities assert that Valle’s attempted kidnapping plots online were first devised on DarkFetishNet.com.
Merenkov testified his site is "just like Facebook but...oriented to people with fetishes that are not considered to be standard."
He was later asked whether there was any way for the site owners to see who was involved in the darkly sexual site, or if there was a method to find from where specifically his users were coming from. Merenkov did testify that over 70% of the members of his fetish site come from the U.S.
"No," he said, drawing smiles from tired jurors. "That's like asking Zuckerberg if he knows each and every member of Facebook.''
Prosecutors added at the end of the day’s proceedings that out of over 20 alleged online kidnapping plots toward women, at least three were disturbingly very real.