The Court of Appeals analyzed the five Taranovich factors and agreed with the appellate division that Mr. Romeo's right to a speedy trial was violated (People v. Taranovich, 37 NY 2d 442). The five factors are:
"(1) the extent of the delay; (2) the reason for the delay; (3) the nature of the underlying charges; (4) any extended period of pretrial incarceration; and (5) any impairment of defendant's defense (see Taranovich, 37 NY2d at 445)".Naturally, the application of the factors is highly case-specific, and it is worth reading the court's analysis on this issue, especially some helpful citations regarding whether the delay was "extraordinary" as a matter of law. Most noteworthy, however, was its discussion of the fifth factor which generally asks whether the defendant was prejudiced by the delay. On this subject, the court held:
"Here, it is highly likely that the defense was "impaired" (see Hooey, 393 US at 374) by defendant's incarceration for many years in a foreign prison where it would have been difficult for him to participate in his own defense, confer with counsel and contact witnesses. Defendant claims that he had psychiatric problems and might have presented a defense based on a lack of criminal responsibility by reason of mental disease or defect. This type of defense would have required defendant to establish his mental incapacity at the time of the offense. The ability to do this was clearly hampered by his incarceration abroad. "