Transfer Stanley Gumbs-killer to the Netherlands delayed

POSTED: 11/22/11 7:12 AM

Court orders Devon Otto to give account in Willemstad

GREAT BAY / WILLEMSTAD – Devon Otto has to attend his trial on March 16 of next year in the Court in First Instance in Curacao, a judge ruled last Friday in Willemstad. Otto had given up his right to attend his trial, because he fears for his safety in Curacao and because his stay at the prison in Willemstad has traumatized him, the Amigoe reported on Saturday.
On September 13 Otto allegedly shot down two inmat4res in the prison in Willemstad. One of his targets, Lysander Kani, was seriously injured. After the shooting Otto was transferred from Willemstad to the Pointe Blanche prison to serve his 30 year sentence for the 2008 murder of census office employee Stanley Gumbs.
Amigoe reported that Otto “had not eaten for a week” while he was detained in Willemstad, “because he was afraid to get poisoned.” At his own request he spent a longer time in a police cell in Barber.
Otto, who turned 31 in June, denies that he shot the two inmates on December 13. His attorney says that the investigation was incomplete. Investigators did not do a so-called “shooting hand test” to establish the presence of gunpowder residue on someone’s hand/. The investigation shows that Otto handled the .38 caliber Smith & Wesson revolver, but that the weapon was wrapped in a towel.
The judge ruled on Friday that the accusations against Otto are so serious that his presence at the trial is required. To give publicly account and to tell his side of the story. “we know the case file but it has not been discussed in public yet,” the judge said. The situation would have been different if Otto had been a confessing suspect; in that case, the trial would have continued on Friday.
Whether Otto will be brought to Curacao in March or that the court will decide to choose another location for the trial is still under consideration. The judge ordered the Public prosecutor’s Office to examine the trace evidence on the firearm. The prosecutor doubted whether the results of this examination would be available within four months, given the long waiting list at the Dutch forensic Institute NFI. The judge said that the result of this examination is not of the utmost importance, but he said that the prosecution must make an attempt to get it done.
Otto was sentenced on appeal to 30 years imprisonment in February of last year; earlier, the court in first Instance handed down a lighter sentence, 24 years. Otto was found guilty of an attempt on the life of Louis a. Richardson, aka Sticky, on March 21, 2008, five days later he robbed a couple of American tourists, and again five days later he killed Stanley Gumbs in a case of mistaken identity.
Otto proved unmanageable in the Pointe blanche prison and he was transferred to Curacao. But when he shot two inmates there on September 13, Justice Minister Roland Duncan was forced to take him back.
Persistent rumors have it that Otto was to be paid for shooting the two inmates. Lysander Kani belongs to the Kani drugs gang in Curacao and Otto supposedly was contracted for the job by a rival gang. He never got paid because he failed to kill his targets.
Amigoe reported that Minister Duncan has in the meantime an agreement with the Netherlands to send Otto overseas, but his trial must be handled first.tpo speed up Otto’s transfer to the Netherlands, the court in Willemstad fast tracked the trial date but due to the defendant’s absence, it has not been postponed until March..

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