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Oct 22, 2013

Chief Magistrate rules for Gary Seawell to be extradited

Gary Seawell

Gary Seawell was in Magistrate’s Court today to hear a decision on a request for extradition to the U.S. Gary is the brother of Mark Seawell, and both men have been fighting extradition in the courts. Uncle Sam says that the brothers masterminded a drug trafficking ring between Belize and the U.S. between 1994 and 1997. On his last appearance in September, Seawell’s Attorney, Arthur Saldivar, questioned the authenticity of the affidavits in the bundle of evidence provided by the U.S. He pointed out that those giving statements were not sworn to tell the truth under oath and that rendered the documents invalid. Saldivar was absolutely confident that his argument would win the day for his client. And that’s why he was shocked today when Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith ruled that Gary Seawell could be extradited to the U.S.  Saldivar says that decision was made in error.

 

Arthur Saldivar, Attorney for Gary Seawell

Arthur Saldivar

“An application was made in limine which is an application before the substantive start of the proceedings to determine whether or not the documents were admissible. That is what the ruling should have been about—whether or not these documents were admissible for the purpose of the proceedings. And certainly it was never anticipated that we were going to get a ruling in relation to the ultimate question…whether or not the case was made out. it is what it is; the court has made a ruling and it is now for the Supreme Court to determine whether the ruling is in line with the law. I will say however that from my expectation, natural justice require that our side be heard on each document, on each witness statement. Now what the ruling is saying here and let me put it here, the statements before the court re made in accordance to the laws of Belize. Now that was one of the questions. Certainly we know that the statements were not made in accordance with the laws of Belize because they were not made in Belize nor for Courts in Belize. The contention of the defense was in relation to whether or not the absence of an oath rendered the documents purely hearsay which would have them made them inadmissible in a court of law. What the Chief Magistrate stated in her decision is that regarding the admissibility or inadmissibility, these are issues to be dealt with at trial in United States or at the Habeas Corpus hearing at the Supreme Court of Belize. So I believe that there was an error in law in that regard and that error of law will be brought up before the Supreme Court. I believe that we have enough precedent relating to other extradition matters where it has been show that hearsay is inadmissible here in Belize. It cannot be that persons can give statements that in law would be a nullity and that nullity is acted upon within the courts of law in Belize. But as I said, we are all humans, we are prone at some time or the other to make errors and I believe that an error has been made here.”

 

Saldivar has fifteen days to apply for the matter to be heard in the Supreme Court. He confirmed that the application would be made in plenty of time. Gary Sewell will now join his brother Mark in the higher courts of the land, fighting extradition to the U.S.

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4 Responses for “Chief Magistrate rules for Gary Seawell to be extradited”

  1. Buju says:

    Its sad when we as a country will send our citizens to be tried and made an example of in the United States while the US is doing absolutely nothing to try to get that jackass McAfee here to face murder charges!

    US da lone r@Ss too

    I am not saying the Sewell boys are innocent or saints but for goodness sake lets be fair across the board
    No McAfee no Sewell, no Rhett Fuller no other Belizean!!!!!!!!!

  2. ceo says:

    I agree with BUJU and have said this same thing over and over. The US will never treat her citizens the way we do ours. The US knows that belizeans in high places will do anything for a few dollars more!

  3. Gary says:

    I totally agree with Buju……We are doing everything to fight our own peeps when the US is there not doing anything to help when the tables are turn…Not only with Belize, but they tend to behave that way with everyone else… F@#$ the US

  4. Coolie Gial says:

    I don’t know why they don’t leave my cousins alone. I agree with Buju too. Bring back McAfee. We Belizean have to stand by each other and start protest for our own people. How the hell you want agree with the US to send away your own people. Dean Barrow need fi step up and stop play the dam fool. These guys are your own people. Just hold strong mi cousins and keep your head up no matter what. Love Y’all

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