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Mar 28, 2012

B.D.F. Soldier gets retrial in Manslaughter Case

Paulino Assi

Just over a year ago, Belize Defence Force Sergeant Paulino Assi was convicted of Manslaughter and sentenced to ten years in prison. But Assi appealed and today a retrial was ordered in the case.  The appeal started last Friday and Assi’s Attorney, Simeon Sampson argued four grounds on his behalf. Simpson’s submissions included that the trial judge gave an inappropriate and erroneous direction in respect of the good character of his client and that the directions given on the burden of proof was confusing. Today, the court of appeal ruled that Assi did not get a fair trial based on those two arguments. A date for the retrial has not been set, but Assi has been released on bail of six thousand dollars. Assi was charged following the fatal shooting of twenty-one year old Kenny Cortez on November twenty-second, 2008. Cortez was reportedly behaving unruly at the San Pablo Community Center, where he was sheltering after the floods of Tropical Depression sixteen. Assi claims that he shot Cortez because he advanced toward him threateningly.

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3 Responses for “B.D.F. Soldier gets retrial in Manslaughter Case”

  1. Lionel says:

    He is the reason why I am a Law Student right now.. brings joy to my heart to hear this!!!!!!!

  2. leo says:

    we need to understand that our security forces are on their job and the government should do its outmost best to help soldiers especially in these cases. their pay is already small and they are working harder than any other people in the society even during dangerous disaster times. think of that for once and then you do the maths.

  3. from the west says:

    I am with you , Mr. Paulino Assi. I have been disappointed to see a good man behind bars because he was required to guard a civilian establishment that he is not trained for. BDF are trained to shoot to kill. I hope he wins his case in court. I will stand behind those who stand behind my country. God bless you.

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