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Feb 20, 2012

2 Acquitted of Murder

Thirty-two year old Seidi Salazar and her forty-three year old brother, David Uk have been acquitted of the murder of thirty-year old Mario Chi. Chi, who was living with Uk’s wife, Ana,  was at home on October twenty-fifth in 2009, when someone walked in and fatally shot him. The following day, San Ignacio police arrested Uk and Salazar, who were jointly charged with Chi’s murder. While in custody, police obtained a confession statement from both suspects. The trial which started last week, ended today in the Belmopan Supreme Court after a voire dire in relation to the caution statement given by David Uk and its admissibility. Defense Attorney, Dickie Bradley challenged the statement saying that back in 2009, Uk was ordered to a hospital because of injuries he had and a doctor later certified the injuries as harm. Chi later told the courts that he was beaten by police and forced to give a caution statement. Uk’s allegations were confirmed by the testimony of a female inmate who said she saw when Uk was taken and return to the cell by police officers, and during his absence she heard screams. On Friday Justice Dennis Hanomansingh ruled that the caution statement given by Uk was not admissible and Bradley submitted that there was no evidence against Uk. The Justice later directed the jury to acquit Uk. Today Bradley made a no case submission for Salazar saying that there wasn’t any evidence linking Salazar to the crime. Justice Hanomansingh upheld the no case submission and directed the jury to acquit Salazar. Prosecuting the case was Senior Counsel Cecil Ramirez, who had called nine witnesses before closing his case.

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