Eli Lopez Avila and Milton Maza’s case continued today before Justice Colin Williams. The duo is accused of the double murder of Richard Stuart and his wife, Maria. In today’s proceedings, Leeroy Banner, who is representing Eli Lopez Avila, presented a no case submission. Banner told the court that the evidence did not support a conviction; in so doing, he reviewed the evidence presented to the court pointing out the deficiencies. Justice Williams adjourned the court for a short period to consider Banner’s no case submission. When court resumed Justice Williams said that it is his belief that there is a case for the second defendant, Eli Lopez Avila to answer and as such, the no case submission was rejected. Banner spoke to the media after the court hearing.
Leeroy Banner – Defense Attorney: “On behalf of the second accused made a no case submission and it was my view that the evidence was insufficient to establish a case against the second accused We believe that when the evidence was looked at in its totality it was weak and tenuous and at this stage we invited His Lordship to stop the case and enter a verdict of not guilty. The Crown on the other hand is saying that the case is based on circumstantial evidence and there are pieces of evidence linking the accused to the crime and the crown’s submission was based heavily on the fact that items that belonged to the deceased were found in his yard, that he took the police to those items and the fact that those items were found about thirty miles away from the house in Kings Park West Landivar. So he invited the court to when look at the evidence in its totality that there is some evidence that the accused is involved in the crime that he is charged with.”
The case continues on Monday with the defense attorneys presenting their closing arguments.