Court takes no decision yet in case of repeat burglar

POSTED: 08/30/12 12:26 PM

St. Maarten – Judge Tamara Tijhuis concluded that her court does not have adequate information to conclude the criminal trial of Martino Alfredo H., a 33-year-old local with serious addiction and psychological problems. The defendant is accused of eight burglaries and attempted burglaries he committed between August 16 of last year and June 3 of this year. One of the burglaries took place on January 11 – the defendant’s birthday.

Prosecutor mr. Dounia Benammar demanded 24 months imprisonment, with 8 months suspended and 2 years of probation at the trial. She also demanded that H. cooperates with the Rehabilitation Bureau, also when this involved intake at Turning Point or the Mental Health Foundation
Judge Tijhuis ruled that, in the interest of meting out a carefully balanced punishment, it needs an evaluation from the Rehabilitation Bureau that deals with the options for intake or treatment at turning Point or the Mental health Foundation. “It is important that the Rehabilitation Bureau and both institutions attempt to set up a joint treatment plan focused on preventing the defendant from committing new crimes.”
Judge Tijhuis reopened the investigation and postponed it until an unspecified future date – no longer than four months away.

The judge considered that the charges all took place within a year and that the defendant’s schizophrenia and addiction had played a crucial role in them. “With the defense attorney and the prosecutor the court is of the opinion that it is plausible that the defendant will get in touch with the police and the judiciary again for lack of a fitting punishment. The defendant’s current situation is not only tragic for him and for his loved ones, but he is also a nuisance for the society.”
The talkative defendant declared in court that he is prepared to cooperate with treatment and that he is unable to help himself without the assistance of others.

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