DETROIT— The lawyer of a Henry Ford Hospital emergency room physician charged with mutilating the genitalia of two 7-year-olds from Minnesota said she only performed a religious procedure that involved removing skin and burying it in the ground.
The claims happened on Monday, April 10, during a 90-minute court hearing that ended with a federal magistrate judge ordering the imprisonment of the Northville doctor without bond until trial.
“There is clear and convincing evidence that [Nagarwala] poses a danger to the community,” U.S. Magistrate Judge Mona Majzoub said Monday.
The court hearing revealed that Nagarwala belongs to a small group of Shia Muslims that has been connected to a mutilation scandal in Australia two years ago.
Also, prosecutors said there are three more victims in Michigan, but Nagarwala has not been charged in relation to them.
She has been placed on leave from her job at Henry Ford Health System since being charged. The procedures did not happen at any of their facilities.
“The alleged criminal activity did not occur at any Henry Ford facility,” Henry Ford Health System said in a released statement. “We would never support or condone anything related to this practice. The doctor has immediately been placed on administrative leave.”
Defense lawyer Shannon Thompson wanted Nagarwala released on home detention with a GPS tether and offered to post a cash bond.
The hearing followed four days after Nagarwala was detained at Detroit Metropolitan Airport while trying to fly to Nairobi, Kenya.
The FBI kept an eye on Nagarwala after finding out that the doctor purportedly removed clitoral skin from two girls from Minnesota who were brought to Detroit earlier this year for the procedure, which violates both federal and state law.
Authorities in Minnesota have filed child protection petitions for the girls and one of them was taken from her family last week.
FBI agents listened to one of the mothers of the Minnesota victims calling Nagarwala, according to prosecutors.
Nagarwala ordered the mother to “deny everything”, Assistant U.S. Attorney Sara Woodward said Monday.