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Jul 4, 2022

Convicted Murderers William Danny Mason Faces Kidnapping Allegations

Convicted murderers, William Danny Mason, Ashton Vanegas, Terrence Fernandez, and Ernest Castillo were back inside the Belmopan Supreme Court today. They stand accused of the May thirty-first, 2016 alleged kidnapping of business man Lloyd Thiessen and his wife in the Belmopan area. The Thiessens had reported their abduction before fleeing the country in fear of their lives. They then returned to make an official statement, before leaving the country once again. The couple told police that they had given three hundred thousand dollars to Mason to import corn. But, the grains were never delivered and things went sour between Mason and Thiessen. The kidnapping trial was set to begin today. But, due to a number of concerns being raised, Justice Francis Cumberbatch decided to dismiss the entire jury. Norman Rodriquez, the attorney representing Ashton Vanegas in this matter, explained what transpired in court today.


Norman Rodriquez

Norman Rodriquez, Attorney- at- Law

“The murder trial is over and they have been convicted. This one is for kidnapping that is why we came before the court today. Today’s process should have been two things, one the selection of the jury or paneling as they call it and the trial should have started. It would have started or may have started with a void dire being before the court. But, certain concerns were raised in the jury selection process, and the judge being the holder of the balance or scale of justice decided to discharge the jury after certain concerns were raised. Today, there were forty two on a list, but only twenty four presented themselves before the court. One of the concerns raised by a Senior Counsel is that since every defendant can object to five of those people, just a normal objection if you don’t want them on the panel, object to five of them, and since there are five defendants he was saying that you should have at least twenty five representing the five defendants’ objections, and nine. But, that did not happen and there was twenty four, which was adjourned from this morning to this afternoon for Counsel and Director of Public Prosecution to make submissions before the court. But, when we came back, the judge looked at another issue raised, and that is that the jury had become privy to a part of the process and the judge in his own digression decided to discharge the jury. So, now where do we go from here with this process?. Well, the jury is discharged, so we will have to wait until another jury comes to life. The life of the jury ends this month, and we can’t use this jury again, so we have to wait until September when a new jury’s life will come into play and then we will be able to proceed with trial. But, in the meantime, the judge along with Counsel in chambers decided that we could address some other issues through case management, so we are set for the twentieth and the twenty first of July for those matters to be addressed.”

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