Retrial ordered for Edward Buller Print E-mail
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Friday, 07 March 2014 00:00

On Wednesday, March 5 a retrial was ordered for 55-year-old,  Edward Buller, who was initially charged on June 24, 2009, for the murder of Ella Mae Bennett. The body of the 41-year-old Honduran national had been found inside an abandoned home on Central American Boulevard on June 20.

On September 19, 2011, a jury of 12 had found Buller not guilty of murder but guilty of manslaughter. Buller was later sentenced to 16 years imprisonment for the crime.

At his appeal on Wednesday, he was represented by Attorney, Anthony Sylvester. The crown was represented by the DPP, Cheryl Lynn-Vidal.

   Vidal was first to speak and she conceded that because jury had been misdirected; a retrial needed to be granted. It was also the view of the DPP that if the jurors were properly directed, they could have convicted him.

  For his part, Sylvester said that he could not understand the basis as to how the jurors found his client guilty of manslaughter and he was not so sure if a retrial would help him.

   In a statement presented during the trial, Buller said he only pushed the woman and she fell and hit her head.  However, when he spoke in court, Buller denied giving the police a statement willfully claiming that the statement was given by force.  He said that he was not at the crime scene; he told the court that he was at home watching television.

  The doctor said Bennett died from trauma to the head, and a cement block was found next to her body.

On his appeal, president of the Court of Appeal, Justice Manuel Sosa told Buller that his conviction was quashed and that his sentence was set aside and a retrial ordered. Buller's attorney then asked that bail be granted; however, Justice Sosa explained that the practice was that an accused remains in custody until the re-trial. He then referred the matter to the lower court.