ARNHEM/PHILIPSBURG–The Court of First Instance sentenced the main suspect in the “Mars” investigation, Kathron “Kuchi” Fortune l, who is accused of killing two men in a hotel room on the ground floor of Simpson Bay Resort in broad daylight on December 5, 2016, to life in prison on Wednesday morning.
The MARS investigation was started after a missing person report was filed concerning two young men, Sarante Diaz and Rosario Contreras. Both were last seen alive on December 5, 2016.
As the investigation progressed, one of the suspects directed detectives to the location where the bodies had been dumped. The bodies of the two victims were discovered in the Belair lagoon on August 1, 2017. The investigation also revealed that the two men had been killed in a room at Simpson Bay Resort.
Kuchi is currently being detained in a maximum security prison in the Netherlands as a result of his escaping from the Pointe Blanche prison in St. Maarten in 2016 while he was serving a 21-year sentence for a murder he had committed in 2005.
The court held him responsible for the manslaughter of one victim and the murder of the other victim, removal of their bodies, and firearm possession. Kuchi was also found guilty for escaping the Pointe Blanche prison in 2016. The court concluded that he is a danger to society and a life sentence was justified by the severity of the crimes he had committed. He will remain in the Netherlands for the time being.
Co-defendant T.F., brother of K.F., was sentenced to 30 years in prison for his role in the manslaughter and murder, removal of the bodies and firearm possession. In accordance with the Prosecution Office, the court found it proven that T.F. was an active accomplice. T.F. was found guilty of the planning and execution, removal of the victims’ bodies and firearm possession.
The third suspect K.S. was sentenced to eight years in prison. Also, in accordance with the Prosecution Office, the court found it proven that K.S. was complicit in the manslaughter and murder in the Simpson Bay Resort hotel room and removal of the victims’ bodies.
The MARS investigation was carried out in close collaboration with the St. Maarten Police Force KPSM. Both are content with the outcome of this investigation, which spanned more than two years.
According to Fortune’s lawyer Sjamira Roseburg, her client has requested an appeal and does not agree with the verdict given. Her client maintains that it was self-defence that led to the deaths of both men.
Source: The Daily Herald https://www.thedailyherald.sx/islands/88075-kuchi-sentenced-to-life-in-prison