27 April 2009

Baucau District Court Decision in Case of Murder and Attempted Murder

The East Timor Judicial System Monitoring Program Press Release 21 April 2009 - On Monday 13th April the Baucau District Court announced its decision in a case of fighting between rival martial arts groups PSHT and 77 that occurred on 24 April 2008 in Baucau resulting in the deaths of the victims N and B. Based on court monitoring conducted by JSMP, the defendants were handcuffed when they were led into the court room to hear the announcement of the decision.

The decision was lenient on 8 of the defendants; however the defendant JL was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment. Each of the defendants was charged with attempted murder and damaging property. Of the aforementioned 8 defendants, four defendants (JD, TT, JX and DD) were acquitted as their guilt was not proven in the aforementioned case.

The motive for the murder arose after the defendant JL and JB were wrestling and threw each other to the ground landing on some dog feces. After that incident JB sought the help of his friends to beat up JL. This ignited a fight between the two groups (PSHT and 77) which resulted in the deaths of victims N and B.

After examining the circumstances surrounding this case, the court ordered defendants JB, BD, JD and PM to pay court costs. Defendants BD and JX were each sentenced to 3 years imprisonment, with a reduction of one year for time spent in detention, for attempted murder and damage to property. Defendants PM and JB were respectively sentenced to 11 months and 17 days, with a reduction for time spent in detention. In addition to sentences of imprisonment, the court also ordered the defendants PM and JX to compensate the material loss of the victim T, amounting to $112.00.

The defendant JL was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment by the Baucau District Court because, according to the Prosecutor’s indictment, he was the main perpetrator and mastermind of the fight that took place between PSHT and 77 which resulted in the deaths of the victims N and B and damage to the property of the victim T.

For further information please contact: Luis de Oliveira Sampaio Executive Director JSMP Email : luis@jsmp.minihub.org Landline: 3323883
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