International — 12 July 2013

Information reaching Amandala today is that Belizean Joseph Budna, incarcerated in Guatemala following a 25-year conviction for kidnapping and extortion—a sentence he is appealing—appeared in court in Petén on Monday, where he was read an additional charge of attempted murder against a team of the Guatemala special police squad.

Budna was furthermore charged with the possession of a .40 handgun, which police allege he had used to engage in a shootout with them last September, when they moved to apprehend him on claims that he was a ringleader in a cross-border extortion/kidnapping band.

Budna—who has been transferred back to Zacapa jail, located south of Belize, near Guatemala’s border with Honduras—is to return to court on July 22, 2013.

Our newspaper has been informed that charges against him for the maim and wounding of Edner Negredo, 19, a Guatemalan, had been dropped due to insufficient evidence. However, Budna still has to answer to additional extortion charges for the alleged kidnapping of Abimael Palma and the kidnapping of Kevin Pacheco.

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