Posted: Wednesday, June 29, 2022. 9:57 am CST.
By Aaron Humes: Supreme Court Justice Herbert Lord has handed down sentences of 26 years to life in prison for convicted murderer Noe Gamaliel Gonzalez Avila and 21 years for manslaughter convicts Angel Antonio Cardenas and Mateo Pott Jr. in the murder of 71-year-old “Don Ramon” Cervantes Senior in 2014.
“Dоn Rаmоn” wаѕ kіdnарреd frоm hіѕ саnе fіеld аnd kіllеd оn Јulу 2, 2014. Ніѕ bоdу wаѕ dіѕсоvеrеd thrее dауѕ lаtеr іn а ѕhаllоw grаvе аlоng thе Ноnеу Саmр Rоаd. Не hаd bееn blindfolded, duсt-tареd аnd handcuffed.
The trio pleaded guilty in March after reaching an agreement with the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions, which judged that without several of its key witnesses but with the direct confessions of the accused, a plea would bring closure to the case.
Justice Lord heard submissions from the prosecution and the defense. Concerning Gonzalez, he stated in his ruling that there was a long list of aggravating factors against him, including the wait to make a guilty plea which disavailed him of a possible reduction of sentence for finally accepting his guilt. The 26-years-to-life term is reduced by eight years of remand time, so after 18 years he can apply for parole, which will not be automatically granted.
While a manslaughter plea avers that the accused caused a victim to die unintentionally by their actions, Justice Lord noted that the manner of Cervantes’ death was gruesome and “borderline murder.”
Nonetheless, he set their term at 21 years less time on remand, which means they will serve 13 years before being released. The term could have been as much as life in prison under the Criminal Code.
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