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Cablegate: Mexico: New Developments in Brad Will Case

VZCZCXYZ0005
OO RUEHWEB

DE RUEHME #0702 0560342
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
O R 250341Z FEB 10
FM AMEMBASSY MEXICO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC IMMEDIATE 0631
INFO ALL US CONSULATES IN MEXICO COLLECTIVE
RHEHAAA/NATIONAL SECURITY COUNCIL WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/CDR USNORTHCOM PETERSON AFB CO
RHMFIUU/CDR USSOUTHCOM MIAMI FL
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF HOMELAND SECURITY WASHINGTON DC
RHMFIUU/DEPT OF JUSTICE WASHINGTON DC
RUEAIIA/CIA WASHINGTON DC
RUEHC/USAID WASHDC 0016

UNCLAS MEXICO 000702

SIPDIS
WHA

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PGOV PREL PHUM MX
SUBJECT: MEXICO: NEW DEVELOPMENTS IN BRAD WILL CASE

1. Summary. After several rounds of appeals and counter appeals,
the Mexican court system effectively threw out the state's case
against Juan Manuel Martinez Moreno, the accused assailant of
Bradley Will. The Attorney General's Office of the Special
Prosecutor for Crimes Against Journalists (FEADP) Attorney General
(PGR) is in the process of considering its options in terms of
investigating Will's murder. End Summary.

2. In July 2009, Will's accused assailant, Juan Manuel Martinez
Moreno, filed his second appeal (amparo) challenging the state's
case against him. On December 29, a Oaxacan federal judge ruled
the state had presented insufficient evidence against Martinez.
Notwithstanding, PGR's January 21 appeal of that decision, on
February 17, a Federal Tribunal confirmed the federal judge's
ruling and ordered the release of Martinez.

3. Julia Gonzalez, the Technical Secretary for PGR's
International Coordinator, told PolCouns February 24 that PGR's
Special Prosecutor for Crimes Against Journalists was exploring its
options in the wake of ruling. She indicated one option was for
the PGR to open a case against Martinez' alleged co-conspirators.
She suggested this case could include Martinez. International
Coordinator Adrian Franco explained PGR was not constrained against
opening a new case against Martinez on the basis of double jeopardy
as the first case never came to trial.

4. Comment: Mexico had already dedicated far in excess of the
norm to investigate the 2006 murder of Will and develop its case
against Martinez on the basis of forensic and separate
circumstantial evidence. Independent investigations into the case
by the Physicians for Human Rights (PHR) and a team of Canadian
investigators had produced a mixed assessment of the evidence on
which the PGR was basing its case against Martinez. The February
decision tossing out PGR's case against Martinez, however
celebrated by Will's family, represents a major blow to the PGR's
efforts to resolve this case. The PGR has long maintained it could
make a new and stronger case against Martinez based on evidence it
has collected since the initial indictment. No doubt, however, it
is weighing into its decision the Mexican courts' predisposition,
to date, to rule repeatedly in Martinez' favor. End Comment.
FEELEY

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