Michael Mastromarino, the accused ringleader of the body-parts-for-sale scam, was expected to walk out of jail - without posting bail up front - with yesterday's approval of the state Supreme Court.
Without comment, the high court denied the appeal of the district attorney, which had been seeking to have the defendant post 10 percent of his $5 million bail.
If Mastromarino skips court proceedings here, however, he must then pay $500,000 in cash, as ordered by Common Pleas Judge Pamela Dembe, whose ruling was upheld by two courts in the past week.
"I'm smiling. I always smile when I win," said Mastromarino's attorney, A. Charles Peruto Jr., who was working out last-minute release problems.
Mastromarino, 44, owner of the now-defunct Biomedical Tissue Services, Inc., which allegedly bought diseased tissue of 244 Philadelphians without the approval of the deceased or their relatives.
BTS then sold the allegedly diseased tissue for $1 million to intermediary companies for implants, according to a grand jury report.
Mastromarino, of Fort Lee, N.J., has been jailed at the Philadelphia Industrial Correctional Center since Oct. 9, when he surrendered to face 1,725 counts of 14 offenses, including operating a criminal enterprise.
Mastromarino is one of five defendants. Others are brothers Louis and Gerald Garzone and James A. McCafferty, Jr., all funeral-home operators; Garzone Funeral Home Inc., and Liberty Cremation, owned by all three funeral-home operators.