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December 07
17:30 2018
THE REPORTER: News Staff, -  

Orel Leslie, who was charged and acquitted twice for the 2012 murder of James Noralez, brought a landmark civil suit against the Kolbe Foundation and the Government of Belize for alleged inhumane treatment he claims he was subject to during his time in custody at the Belize Central Prison.

The case started last week before Justice Courtney Abel and included testimony from Leslie as well as prison staff such as Belize Central Prison Chief Executive Officer, Virgilio Murillo and others. The hearing wrapped up last Friday and Justice Abel has reserved judgement until after he has had a chance to visit the prison and view the conditions for himself before delivering his ruling on the matter.

Leslie claimed that during his time incarcerated at the Belize Central Prison, he was treated inhumanely. Leslie also claimed that he was denied his fundamental rights, including an allegation that he was denied visitation by a Justice of the Peace. Leslie was represented by attorney Audrey Matura while the prison was represented by attorney Phillip Zuniga.

Murillo told the Reporter that Justice Abel is expected to visit the prison soon to view the area where Leslie was housed and to satisfy himself that the conditions were reasonably okay for any inmate. “We don’t have any problem with that because we are sure of what we have here,” Murillo said.

Written arguments in the case will now be submitted and following Justice Abel’s visit to the prison, a decision in the landmark case is not expected until February 2019.

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