Two Hondurans Face 177 Years in Prison

Two laborers were at last convicted, tried, and sentenced to a total of 177 years in prison on charges of murder and attempted murder in an incident occurring on June 21, 2008, in the community Naco, Cortes. Efraín Moya Villeda (56) and José Donato Pineda (48), were identified as responsible for the deaths of four people in a pick-up truck who were heading home to a village in the mountains of El Merendón.

Alexander Arriaga Jairo Martínez, José Trinidad Paredes Martínez, Alba Duarte, and Catherine Oliva Miriam Salvador Vargas were murdered when ambushed on the road. Moya and Donato sprung from the bushes and opened fire, killing the four of them and seriously injuring three more people in the truck, Wildo José Leiva Leiva, Tomasa Martínez, and Cruz Rivera. Arrest warrants were issued for three additional men who were believed to have participated in the assassinations.

Allegedly, the defendants took action because there was a land dispute between families, but research has been unable to prove this theory.

The ruling by the trial court against Efraín Moya and José Donato Pineda, sentenced each to 22 years imprisonment for each offense of murder committed against the four who died. They were additionally sentenced to 15 years in prison for each count of attempted murder against the three people injured, resulting in a sum of 177 years in prison.

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