63-year-old Roger Victor Wallis, British national, who was arrested and charged with two counts of attempted kidnapping in Belmopan, Cayo District, was denied bail. Wallis appeared with his attorney, Hurl Hamilton, this afternoon. Attorney Hamilgont submitted for bail on his behalf before Justice Adolph Lucas but bail was denied. Justice Lucas noted that bail would not be granted on three grounds: the petitioner is a British national whose visitor’s permit expires today, the alleged offence is against a minor done in the presence of his two siblings and due to the gravity of the charge there is a likelihood that he might abscond and not be able to stand trial. Attorney Hurl Hamilton spoke with the media after the hearing about the submissions he made.
Hurl Hamilton Attorney at Law: “First and foremost the presumption of innocence must always prevail, you are innocent until proven guilty, the other submission that I have viewed is that the petitioner has substantial prize in Belize. What is the risk that the petitioner is going to abscond and not show up for his court date? The petitioner help health issues, the petitioner is diabetic, he has a kidney problem so those were substantially my submission to the court.”
Portia Staine Ferguson, who represented the Crown Counsel objected to bail. Staine-Ferguson added that the accused made a caution statement but Attorney Hamilton charged that caution statement was obtained improperly. Hamilton also told the media that his client can reapply for bail.
Hurl Hamilton Attorney at Law: “Even though the judge has denied bail at first instance, the judge is still mindful of the petitioners presumption of innocence that is afforded to him so the judge is mindful of timelines. The preliminary needs to be held by the 17th of December and the petitioner needs to be arraigned by the 3rd of April next year before the high court. If these conditions are not satisfied then the petitioner can re apply for bail.’
Wallis will be arraigned in Belmopan before the Supreme Court.