HUMAN RIGHTS

Jailed Spaniard could be transferred from US death row in two weeks

Florida Supreme Court dismisses prosecution's appeal against retrial for 1994 triple murder

Pablo Ibar in 2009.
Pablo Ibar in 2009.John Watson Riley / EFE

The Florida Supreme Court has dismissed a prosecution appeal against the decision to order a new trial for a Spaniard who has been on death row for 15 years.

Pablo Ibar, who has been behind bars for nearly 22 years at Rainford penitentiary in Starke, Florida, has always maintained his innocence in connection with a triple murder that took place in 1994.

In February of this year, the high court ordered a retrial on the basis that mistakes were made during the first trial.

The key piece of evidence in the prosecution’s case was a grainy, soundless home security video

With this new decision, 45-year-old Ibar could be transferred from death row “in 15 days at the outside,” according to the Association against the Death Penalty.

Andrés Krakenberger, the association spokesman, expressed satisfaction at the decision on Basque public radio station Radio Euskadi.

News of the court’s dismissal of the appeal was sent to Ibar’s lawyer, Benjamin Waxman. The appeal was filed by Florida prosecutors in late February.

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No trial date has been set yet for Ibar, the only Spaniard who was on death row since his conviction in 2000.

The key piece of evidence in the prosecution’s case was a grainy, soundless home security video that showed a group of men attacking nightclub owner Casimir “Butch Casey” Sucharski, and two models, Sharon Anderson and Marie Rogers, whom he had brought to his home in Miramar, Florida. The three were shot and killed during the botched robbery attempt.

One of the suspects in the video appears to be Ibar, but his DNA was not found on a shirt that the killer used to partially cover his face.

English version by Susana Urra.

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