|Lawyers say the darndest things...|
Kaushal Niroula, 27, the alleged ringleader of a group of purported San Francisco con men facing capital murder charges in Palm Springs isn't merely a criminal, says a Hawaii attorney representing a woman claiming to be one of Niroula's victims. Rather, Niroula is an earthly vessel for supernatural forces of evil, said Stephen Shaw, who is representing Megumi Hisamatsu, a Japanese woman who has claimed in a San Francisco federal lawsuit that Niroula bilked her out of $500,000.
"There are too many instances of him getting out and going free to blame it on his charisma or a lack of good police work," Shaw says. "I attribute it to the supernatural. He's evil. He's like a vessel. And if people don't treat it like this, he's going to continue doing what he's doing."
Niroula, as previously reported in SF Weekly, faces capital murder charges in connection with the Dec. 4 disappearance of retired Palm Springs art dealer Cliff Lambert. Along with four alleged cohorts, Niroula has pleaded innocent to charges alleging Lambert was murdered as part of a scheme to steal his art collection, loot his bank accounts, and fraudulently sell his house.
In July 2006, during a trip to Hawaii. Niroula allegedly posed as an international business consultant in a scheme to bilk vacationer Hisamatsu of $500,000. According to allegations in her San Francisco federal civil complaint, Niroula persuaded her to open a bank account in Hawaii based on his claims that he would help convince immigration authorities that she was an "investor," and thus grant her a visa allowing for extended stays in the United States. Niroula then allegedly stole some of Hisamatsu's provisional checks and used them to withdraw $500,000.
"I would say he has a supernatural ability to get low bail," Shaw says, in reference to cases Niroula has had pending before Immigration and Customs Enforcement, criminal cases in San Francisco and Marin Counties, and theft allegations in Hawaii.
Only when judges make a policy of acknowledging the existence of a type of evil that transcends mere criminality will it be possible to deter characters such as Niroula, Shaw adds.
"Somebody along the line -- a judge, or a probation officer -- is going to agree with me and say, 'I'm seeing this as a presence of evil, and I'm not allowing bail,'" Shaw says.