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Sep 9, 2019

Murder Trial of Danny Mason Resumes in Supreme Court

The murder trial of William ‘Danny’ Mason and his alleged accomplices resumed this morning in the Belmopan Supreme Court before Justice Antoinette Moore.  The defense case against brothers Keron and Terrence Fernandez, Ashton Vanegas and Ernest Castillo was closed today and Mason’s is set to commence on September eleventh.  All five men were read their rights and three, including Terrence Fernandez, Vanegas and Castillo chose to remain silent.  Keron Fernandez rose to give an un-sworn testimony.  Following this morning’s session, attorneys Bryan Neal and Norman Rodriguez spoke with the media.

 

Bryan Neal, Attorney

Bryan Neal

“Well I have closed my case, my client Keron Fernandez gave a dock statement in which he made it clear that he had nothing to do with this matter.  So now it is for us to give closing arguments.  But before that, Mr. Mason will be calling witnesses and he will decide which of his three rights, meaning will he remain silent, will he give a dock statement or will he take the stand?  That will be determined on Wednesday.”

 

Reporter

“Now, your clients was read his three rights and he chose to give an un-sworn statement.  What’s the significance of giving an un-sworn statement?  I know it’s his right but what’s the significance of him doing that to him being accused in this murder?”

Bryan Neal

“Well to my mind what that does is it gives the judge an opportunity to hear from the witness.  We have heard from countless prosecution witnesses.  This was the first opportunity that he had to give an account of himself and to let the judge see why he should not be convicted of this crime.  So I hope that we don’t know what the judge will do, we are still at the closing stages of the case but we will see what weight the judge gives to his testimony and see if it can affect the outcome so that he is exonerated of this charge.”

 

Norman Rodriguez, Attorney

Norman Rodriguez

“There will be delays, this is why you cannot hold the court to a schedule.  An attorney may not be well, the judge may not be well and attorneys may make an application to the court for adjournment due to some setback in whatever is happening at that stage due to some setback.  So it could be anything, it could be anything that causes a delay and that is why you have adjournments.”

 

Reporter

“Now your client chose to remain silent.  I don’t want you to get into too much details but what led to him choosing what type of counsel was offered to him?”

 

Norman Rodriguez

“We had a discussion.  We met at the prison and we had a discussion and, as you know, the attorneys act on instruction, the client has to decide.  After we had that discussion he had certain questions for me then he asked me those questions and after advising him he said that he thinks it’s best that he remains silent.  And if an accused person decides that he or she wants to remain silent, it would mean that that person himself or herself can see that there may not be a case made out against them.”


Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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