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Federal judge sets 2022 trial date in NYPD firebombing case

July 16, 2021 GMT

NEW YORK (AP) — A federal judge Friday set a March 2022 trial date for two Brooklyn lawyers charged with firebombing an empty police vehicle last year amid demonstrations that followed the death of George Floyd.

Plea negotiations have stalled between prosecutors and attorneys for Colinford Mattis and Urooj Rahman, who are accused of torching a New York City Police Department vehicle.

No one was injured in the May 2020 attack, but the lawyers face at least 45 years in federal prison if convicted as charged.

Prosecutors told U.S. District Judge Brian Cogan on Friday that a plea offer extended to Mattis and Rahman will expire in September.

Surveillance cameras recorded Rahman hurling what prosecutors described as a Molotov cocktail into the vehicle, setting fire to its console near an NYPD station house.

Officers later arrested the lawyers and said they found a lighter, a beer bottle filled with toilet paper, and a gasoline tank in the back of a minivan driven by Mattis.

Prosecutors allege the lawyers planned to distribute and throw other Molotov cocktails.