ORANGE WALK TOWN, Thurs. Oct. 23, 2015–Three men who are accused of the brutal murder of Ramon Cervantes, Sr., appeared in the Orange Walk Magistrate’s Court yesterday, Wednesday, for a preliminary inquiry to determine whether or not there is sufficient evidence against them to commit them to stand trial in the Northern Session of the Supreme Court.
As the paper committal hearing was nearing its end, however, one of the accused men, Noe Gonzalez, shocked the courtroom, causing an uproar when he told Senior Magistrate Merlene Moody that he wanted to address the court, which was an unusual request.
The court prosecutor, Edwin Burallos, told the court that he hoped what was going to be said by the accused man had some bearing on the paper committal proceeding; otherwise he would object to allowing him to address the court, but the Senior Magistrate overruled him and allowed Gonzalez to speak.
Having gotten leave to speak, Gonzalez began by telling the court, “I want to say that the person that is responsible [for the murder] is right here in this courtroom.”
Gonzalez’s statement stunned the courtroom, as all eyes were focused on him, especially Mrs. Vilma Cervantes and her family who had gone to the hearing and who were accompanied by attorney Marcel Cardona, who narrated what transpired in the courtroom to Amandala.
“The man responsible for all of this is ‘Munchie’,” the accused man continued.
The prosecutor objected, telling the court that this was not a part of the day’s proceedings.
Magistrate Moody then asked that everyone, apart from the Cervantes family and the police, leave the courtroom.
After the courtroom was cleared, Gonzalez continued his address.
“We overheard a conversation between Munchie [Ramos Cervantes, Jr.] and Manuel Castillo. Munchie told Castillo that ‘we di have problems to access money from my father.’ Munchie said that the only way to access the old man’s money was to have Castillo kidnap him.”
The other two accused men, Angel Cardenas, Jr., and Mateo Pott, hanged their heads, as Gonzalez spoke.
Magistrate Moody asked him who were the persons involved in the plan, and he told her that it was himself and another man who has not been charged.
After hearing Gonzalez’s story, the Magistrate concluded that the story did not make any sense, but she told him that he had a right to say whatever he wanted to say at his trial. He was also asked by Moody if he had kidnapped and murdered Ramon Cervantes, Sr., and he admitted that he did.
The three men were committed to stand trial at the January session of the Northern Supreme Court. Presently they are not being represented by an attorney.
Amandala spoke to Ramon Cervantes, Jr., tonight, who told us that what the accused man said in court about him was an outrageous lie, and that it appeared to be some kind of political mischief.
Amandala has learned that it was a confession statement Gonzalez had given to police that led to the discovery of the shallow grave where Ramon Cervantes, Sr., was buried.
In July 2014, Ramon Cervantes, Sr., was kidnapped and his body was found buried in a shallow grave on the deserted Honey Camp Road, in Orange Walk.
The senior Cervantes was a former People’s United Party Senator and former Mayor of Orange Walk Town.