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Court of Appeal opens for 2014

Belize Supreme Court building

Belize Supreme Court building

AARON HUMES Reporting: The Court of Appeal has began its first session for 2014 in Belize City.

In addition to the opening case with Wilbert Cuellar and Darwin Diaz, other major cases listed for hearing in this session include Lavern Longsworth, appealing a murder conviction; Melonie Coye, the sole living defendant in the Money Exchange money laundering case after the death of her father Michael, who is also seeking an appeal; Patrick Lorent, acquitted of carnal knowledge, in which the ruling of the trial judge is being challenged, Edward Buller appealing a manslaughter conviction and Gregory August appealing a murder conviction.

Attorney for Coye, Arthur Saldivar, appeared in court on Monday and was told the case was accidentally left off the court docket but would be fitted in depending on the calendar.

On the civil side, the Government appeals an award in favor of Vincent and Cherie Rose, the couple who owned American Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES) in Punta Gorda until it was burned by a mob seeking answers in the disappearances of two missing children in 2011.

An alleged soothsayer reportedly told the group that the children would be on that property, and when they were not found the sanctuary was burned to death, forcing the Roses to relocate to San Pedro Town and Ladyville.

Final judgements in other cases, including the second nationalization of BTL, are expected to come due by the end of the session on March 17.

The Court typically meets three times per year.

This session opened with a minute’s silence in honor of the passing of Lionel Welch and in memory of former jurists Lascelles Robotham and Sir Denis Malone, who died in this month.

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