Chester Noralez acquitted after deaths of accusers Print E-mail
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Thursday, 01 February 2018 00:00

In December 2015, 93-year-old Patrick Grant, brother to Gilda Diaz, was attacked and badly beaten inside his home on Fern Lane, Belize City. The man accused of the heinous crime was his neighbor- then 36-year-old Chester Noralez.

Noralez was accused of entering Grant’s home between December 26 and 27, 2017 and stealing a 21-inch Toshiba television set valued at $265. He was also accused of beating Grant in a near death altercation during the invasion. The trial against Noralez started in early 2017 and Grant, who lived to tell the tale, positively identified Noralez, his neighbor, as his attacker.

Despite the positive identification of Noralez, he walked away from the charge on Friday, January 26, 2018. The other witness to the assault, Gilda Diaz, was prepared to give her testimony in court but died earlier this month. Grant has also since passed and with the death of both witnesses, the prosecutor could not prove several factors.

Noralez appeared before Chief Magistrate Sharon Fraser who explained to him that he was getting off the case not because there is no evidence but because there is insufficient evidence against him. With that, Noralez was acquitted of the charges of burglary and grievous harm.

The case was previously struck out but Noralez later saw charges being brought back against him after the then ACP Chester Williams ordered his re-arrest in the matter.