The attorney for the mother accused of ordering her estranged husband's murder in a Forest Hills playground said he is mulling a plea to the judge to post bail for his incarcerated client.
Following an adjourned hearing Sept. 3, Stephen Scaring, the lawyer representing Dr. Mazoltuv Borukhova, told reporters that his client's health has been deteriorating since her arrest in February and she needs help.
He said that if the murder trial for her and her co-defendant, Mikhail Mallayev, does not begin this year, he would make a motion in the appellate court to get her out of Rikers Island on bail.
"She's been rotting in jail for seven months," he said.
Borukhova, 34, is accused of hiring Mallayev, her distant uncle, to kill Dr. Daniel Malakov on Oct. 28 after he gained custody of their 5-year-old daughter, Michelle.
Malakov, 34, an orthodontist, who, like his wife, was an immigrant from Uzbekistan, was shot twice in the chest as he was dropping off the girl to meet Borukhova at the Annadale Playground in Forest Hills.
Scaring would not go into detail about Borukhova's alleged condition and did not say if she was getting medical attention. Her family repeatedly refused to comment. A handcuffed Borukhova and Mallayev appeared calm as they appeared in court and she gave smiling nods to her relatives as she was escorted out of the room.
Assistant District Attorney Brad Leventhal agreed that the trial should take place before the end of the year, but refuted Scaring's intentions to appeal Borukhova's remanding.
"We will respond appropriately to any motion he makes," he said outside the courtroom.
He said if a trial date is not set before November, it could be pushed back to January.
The first-degree murder and conspiracy case hit a roadblock last week when both sides were forced to postpone pre-trial hearings from Sept. 3 to this Friday and Sept. 22 because Michael Siff, Mallayev's court-appointed attorney, had to deal with a family emergency.
Mallayev, 51, a resident of suburban Atlanta, was arrested three weeks after the shooting after police matched his fingerprints to prints found on a makeshift silencer abandoned at the playground. He initially denied to investigators that he was in New York during the time of Malakov's death, but changed his story and said he was visiting a friend that weekend.
Mallayev's son and daughter declined to comment outside the court after the hearing.
Borukhova was arrested Feb. 7, indicted and remanded the next day after months of open accusations by Malakov's relatives. State Sen. Diane Savino (D-Staten Island) testified during a Family Court hearing after the shooting that Borukhova's sisters asked for her advice during the custody situation and asked what would happen if Michelle "disappeared" or if her father "couldn't take care of her."
Prosecutors noted that she and Mallayev made 91 phone calls to each other between Oct. 2 and Oct. 28, but only two after the shooting.
Investigators said they have other evidence that further implicates the pair, including information taken from wiretaps of Borukhova's phone. Scaring has repeatedly said the evidence is circumstantial and his client is innocent.
"There are no statements my client made that are incriminating," he said.
Reach reporter Ivan Pereira by e-mail at ipereira@t
©2008 Community News Group
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