Images for this Case
New features are coming soon. Login with Facebook to get an early start and help us test them out!
CONVICTED: Was justice served?
more information on voting
When you vote, you are voting on whether or not the punishment fit the crime, NOT on the severity of the case itself. If you feel the sentence was very weak, you would vote 1 star. If you feel the sentence was very strong, you would vote 5 stars.
Please vote honestly and realistically. These ratings will be used a a tool for many future programs, including a "Peoples Choice" of best and worst sentencing, DA and judge "report cards", and more. Try to resist the temptation to vote 1 star on every case, even if you feel that 100 years in prison isnt enough.
Thursday, Jul 29, 2010County: Ulster
Charges: Misdemeanor, Felony CTA
Case Images: 4 files available
Defendant/Suspect: Marie Castaldo
Case Updates: 3 update(s) available
Marie Castaldo of the Super 8 Motel in Kingston was arrested Thursday night by SPCA investigators, Shandaken police and the Ulster County Sheriff's Office, and charged with one count of failure to provide proper sustenance to animals.
According to Brian Shapiro, the SPCA's executive director, 39 additional counts are pending. He said the arrest followed a year-long investigation.
Shapiro said the dogs were discovered in the empty storefront of the former Phoenicia Feed Store at 1026 Old Route 28 in Phoenicia and were in varying states of poor medical condition. He said they had no food or water and were covered in their own wastes.
He called it a classic case of animal hoarding and said the animals had "no quality of life whatsoever."
According to information provided by the SPCA, it is not clearly understood why people become animal hoarders. Early research pointed toward a variant of obsessive-compulsive disorders, but new studies and theories are leading toward attachment disorders in conjunction with personality disorders, paranoia, delusional thinking, depression and other mental illnesses. Some animal hoarders began collecting after a traumatic event or loss, while others see themselves as "rescuers" who save animals from a life on the street.
"Historically, collecting animals was viewed as an animal lover who gets in over his or her head, but the truth is that people who hoard are at a total loss of insight," says Dr. Randall Lockwood, ASPCA Senior Vice President for Anti-Cruelty Initiatives and Legislative Services. "They have no real perception of the harm they're doing to the animals."
In the majority of cases, animal hoarders often appear intelligent and clearly believe they are helping their animals. They often claim that any home is better than letting that animal die. In addition, many hoarders possess the ability to garner sympathy and often deceive others into thinking their situation is under control. They are blind to the fact that they are not caring for the animals or of the extreme suffering they are inflicting.
According to Dr. Lockwood, "Being kept by a hoarder is a slow kind of death for the animal. Actually, it's a fate worse than death."
The SPCA seized all of the dogs, some of which are now receiving emergency medical care at the shelter in Kingston. Others are tenants at the town of Shandaken Animal Shelter.
Shapiro said the investigation is continuing. After her arrest, a man that knew Castaldo came forward and surrendered another dog along with nine pups, saying that Castaldo had been keeping them in another location. Police are also looking into allegations that Castaldo sold dogs from her "collection" in the parking lot of a local supermarket.
Castaldo was arraigned and sent to Ulster County Jail in lieu of $10,000 bail.
So severe is the case, one local restaurant is working with the SPCA to host a fundraiser to pay for the care of the animals.
To send a donation go to the UCSPCA web site at www.ucspca.org or to the local town shelter which is S.A.V.E (Shandaken animal volunteer effort), call 845-688-7165 for more information.
|Great film-related story via New York's Fox 5 affiliate and its "Shame Shame Shame" host Arnold Diaz.|
In the latest installment, which aired on Fox Monday night, Diaz updated news on the scam he uncovered last year involving Marie Castaldo, the founder of the Queens International Film Festival, who was arrested and recently pled guilty to defrauding vendors and filmmakers more than $40,000 in entry and vendor fees.
Castaldo was ordered by the court to pay the vendors $14,000, Diaz said.
She was also recently convicted of animal cruelty in a connection with a boarding kennel she was operating in upstate New York. She was sentenced to 42 days in jail for that, Diaz reported.
And now, in a twist worthy of a film (or at least a Lifetime movie), Castaldo -- whose Visa had expired while she was on probation for a prior conviction -- has been deported back to France.
Diaz has spent his television career shaming con artists, including more than 20 years anchoring CBS' "Shame on You."
Click here to watch the full video of Diaz's report.
|Source: thewrap.com - Nov 23, 2010|
Update posted on Nov 26, 2010 - 10:11AM
|A woman, who was charged with several counts of animal cruelty in Ulster County for hoarding dogs, has been sentenced after pleading guilty in Town of Shandaken Court.|
Marie Castaldo, 52, of the Super 8 Motel in Kingston, pled guilty to seven misdemeanor charges of animal cruelty under state Agriculture and Markets law.
In late July, following a year-long investigation, the Ulster County SPCA arrested Castaldo and seized 48 dogs from her possession. She was remanded to Ulster County Jail in lieu of $10,000 bail after arraignment.
The dogs were discovered in the empty storefront of the former Phoenicia Feed Store in Phoenicia. Most were confined to cages and covered in fecal matter and urine. They were in varying states of poor medical condition and many had no access to food or water.
As part of the plea, Castaldo was sentenced to 42 days in Ulster County Jail with time served. All of the dogs were surrendered to the Ulster County SPCA where they are now available for adoption.
"Our investigators worked tirelessly on this case. It was a successful prosecution and we are very pleased to have the dogs in our possession. These animals can finally find loving homes where they won't be neglected or abused," said Brian Shapiro, executive director of the UCSPCA.
After sentencing, Castoldo was returned to Rikers Island in New York City where she also faces felony charges brought by the Queens District Attorney's Office.
As director of the Queens International Film Festival, Castaldo is accused of failing to pay $14,000 in goods and services to four vendors who worked with her in 2007 and 2008. Charges include scheming to defraud, grand larceny, petit larceny, criminal possession of stolen property and harassment.
As a French National, Castaldo may be deported from the United States by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency.
|Source: midhudsonnews.com - Sep 10, 2010|
Update posted on Nov 26, 2010 - 9:42AM
|Queens International Film Festival Founder Marie Castaldo is currently incarcerated at Riker's Island awaiting court action on cases of animal cruelty and grand larceny.|
Queens International Film Festival Founder Marie Castaldo has been hit with criminal charges yet again, this time for animal cruelty. Castaldo, who was recently arrested in Queens on charges of fraud, was also arrested on August 19 by the Ulster County SPCA following a yearlong investigation.
Castaldo was charged with 40 misdemeanors under the state Agriculture and Markets law. All of the dogs were dirty and in poor condition, suffering from malnourishment, conjunctivitis, kennel cough, sores and abrasions. Some were so weak that they were unable to stand. Most were confined to cages and covered in fecal matter, while many had no access to food and water. According to the Ulster County SPCA, the dogs are safe and are receiving medical care.
According to authorities, the animals were fighting and killing each other over the smallest scraps of food at the time of their discovery.
Castaldo, a resident of Rego Park, was arraigned on the first set of charges on August 10. She faces charges that include first-degree scheme to defraud, third- and fourth-degree grand larceny, petit larceny, third- and fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property and second-degree harassment.
Castaldo was accused last winter of owing thousands of dollars to a number of people and institutions that were participants in the 2009 Queens International Film Festival, which was held at the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts in Astoria. Some of the alleged victims include Brooklyn-based Rooftop Films, a projectionist and the Museum of the Moving Image in Astoria.
She is currently incarcerated at Riker's Island awaiting court action on both cases.
|Source: qgazette.com - Sep 8, 2010|
Update posted on Nov 26, 2010 - 9:40AM
« NY State Animal Cruelty Map
« More cases in Ulster County, NY