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Nov 9, 2009

Coye family money laundering case continues in court

Story PictureThe preliminary investigation into the money laundering charge against the Coye family continued in magistrate court number three this morning. Defense Attorney Anthony Sylvester appeared before Magistrate Kathleen Lewis on behalf of his clients Dietrich Kingston and Athlee Matute. Kingston and Matute are clerks at Money Exchange International Limited (M.E.I.L.). M.E.I.L., the Coye Family (Melanie, Michael, Marlene and Jude Coye) along with Melanie’s boyfriend James Gerou and the two clerks are charged with laundering over one point five million dollars. Sylvester submitted that the second statement given by prosecution witness Shawn Oliver showed no nexus between the charge and his clients. Sylvester indicated that Kingston and Matute were not in a position to carry out any illegal activity alleged by the prosecution. Prosecutor, Antoinette Moore, handled the case for the Financial Intelligence Unit. Moore said that all defendants knew or had cause to believe the one point five million dollars found at the Coye family home, were the proceeds of criminal conduct. She alleged that there was a joint enterprise of fraud and forgery; meaning that each defendant is liable for criminal conduct of all co-defendants. Moore indicated that an employee of the San Pedro Branch of M.E.I.L. routinely saw a co-worker fill out Money Gram receipt forms to send or receive money to individuals who never appeared at the San Pedro branch office. These receipts, Moore alleged, were sent separately to the Belize City main office. That, Moore said, was evidence of criminal conduct. Even though James Gerou, Jude and Marlene Coye did not work for M.E.I.L., Moore attempted to tie them to the case. The hearing was adjourned and the Preliminary Investigation is expected to continue into the coming weeks before a decision is made whether or not to send the case to the Supreme Court.

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