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Oct 14, 2016

Bail Granted as Trio’s Charges Dropped to Manslaughter

Richard “Dickie” Bradley

In April of 2015, San Ignacio police charged Saul Ortiz, Windell Obando and a fifteen year old minor, now seventeen, for the murder of Orelio Montero. They were arraigned and remanded to the Central Prison. But tonight, after a year and a half on remand, Ortiz, Obando and the minor are at home.  The trio was accused of hitting Montero as they walked through a public park in San Ignacio, Cayo; the victim died several days later as a result of the injuries he sustained. But on Thursday in the Belmopan Supreme Court; the trio saw their charge downgraded to manslaughter; they all pleaded not guilty to the charge and were offered bail of eight thousand dollars each by Justice Antoinette. Attorney Bryan Neal represented Obando while Richard “Dickie” Bradley represented the minor. Bradley explains that murder is a very difficult charge because the evidence would have to prove the intent to murder or kill.


Dickie Bradley, Attorney

“Last week in the Belmopan Supreme Court presided over by Justice Antoinette Moore, an indictment was read to the three persons. Upon reading the indictment, we observed—I represented the minor and my colleague represented Obando—and it was observed that in fact rather than the charge of murder for which they had been in prison ever since April 2015; the Crown Counsels Sabita Maharaj having read the file and preparing for case management and trial was of the view, as Bryan Neal and myself were; that the charge of murder could not really hold up in the court of law because murder mean you intentionally want to kill someone and in fact kill that person. So the charge was in fact reduced, at the Supreme Court, at the reading of the indictment from murder to manslaughter. That being the case, we brought it to the attention of the honorable Justice Moore that given the circumstances, we were of the view that the court should permit us to prepare applications to include all the relevant facts and make a petition for the granting of bail, especially with the fact that the three persons were imprisoned on a charge for which normally in Belize, bail is granted for murder.”


Sabita Maharaj represented the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions in the trial. 

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