Suspect Son Latino murders makes first court appearance

POSTED: 03/21/13 12:48 PM

Detectives examine the passport of murder victim Antoine Whit on the crime scene on Illidge Road on December 9 of last year. Photo Today / Leo Brown.

Detectives examine the passport of murder victim Antoine Whit on the crime scene on Illidge Road on December 9 of last year. Photo Today / Leo Brown.

St. Maarten – The Court in First Instance moved the trial of Rodriguez W., one of the suspects in a double murder that took place on December 9 of last year on Illidge Road near the Son Latino night club, to June 19. The investigation is not complete yet and the defense asked the court to hear several witnesses. W. made his first appearance in open court yesterday in front of Judge Wally Havertong who replaced resident Judge Tamara Tijhuis.

W. is one of the suspects in the murders of Antoine M. Whit, a 25-year-old Frenchman, and Miquel Angel Torres Cleman, a 21-year-old from the Dominican Republic. Both men were shot outside the nightclub after an argument between two rivaling groups.

A second defendant, identified in court by the initial J. is in deportation detention in Guadeloupe.

“The technical investigation is not complete yet,” prosecutor Tineke Kamps said.

The Dutch Forensic Institute NFI has in the meantime confirmed that the blood that was found in the car on the crime scene stems from murder victim Cleman. Analysts also found DNA trace evidence of suspect Rodriguez W.

Investigators are also still looking for two other suspects in this double murder, but it is uncertain when – if ever – these suspects will be apprehended.

The hearing on June 19 will be another pro forma session.”It is difficult to plan a date for the trial.” prosecutor Kamps said. “This is due to the extradition procedure for the co-suspect in Guadeloupe. that could take one month, but also two months.”

Attorney Shaira Bommel asked the court to hear five witnesses – a woman, two men, one police officer and one witness from the French side. She also asked to review video footage from the night of the murder at Son Latino. The witnesses will be heard at the Judge of Instruction.

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