By Shayna Jacobs
MANHATTAN SUPREME COURT — The 41-year-old man who sent a barrage of gifts and love notes to the young daughter of Caroline Kennedy pleaded guilty to stalking and harassment charges Monday and was released from jail.
In a long-winded address to reporters after he was freed Monday afternoon, the lovesick stalker, Naeem Ahmed, 41, said he fell for Tatiana Schlossberg — a 20-year-old college student — six years ago, after reading about her famous family.
He had been sending presents and letters to her father's Manhattan office for years prior to his Dec. 8 arrest, Ahmed said. He claimed that the family led him to believe his offerings of affection were welcome because they never turned them away.
When asked whether he still loved the young woman, who is the granddaughter of slain President John F. Kennedy, he said he did, saying that the outcome of this case could not change his feelings.
"I still [love her] because it's unconditional," he said, adding that it was not because of her "wealth or charm" but because he's "read about history."
He jokingly called Caroline his "mother-in-law" when asked whether he's seen the new Reelz mini-series "The Kennedys."
Ahmed pleaded guilty Monday to aggravated harassment and stalking charges in exchange for a 60 day jail sentence, but he was released on time served Monday. He has been behind bars since early December.
He must also undergo psychiatric treatment and stay away from Tatiana's family. After one year of good behavior, he will be allowed to plead to a violation, which will erase the criminal record he acquired by taking the plea.
Ahmed said he would abide by the terms of the protection order and will not contact Schlossberg or her family because it was now clear that they don't want him to.
"To me it's a kind of family matter and I am respecting them," he said.
His lawyer, Gerald Hertz, called him "a romantic" who never believed his $90 flower orders, candies and other gifts were unwelcome to the Schlossberg-Kennedys.
"He's no nut. He's got some romantic ideas," Hertz said.
Ahmed's plea came on the eve of what was expected to be his trial. Manhattan Supreme Court Judge Bruce Allen successfully convinced Ahmed to take the plea offer, saying the deal was too good to pass up, Hertz said.
Had the trial gone ahead, Tatiana's father, Edward Schlossberg, a designer and author, would have had to take the witness stand, Hertz said.