General / Weekend News

Alleged murder mastermind out on bail

By Benjamin Flowers, Staff Reporter

Bradley Paumen, 41, is out on bail, having been charged with plotting the murder of four persons.

Justice Antoinette Moore granted Paumen bail on Friday, against the expressed objection of the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl-Lyn Vidal. Vidal objected to bail because Paumen, who owns Dark Night Cave-Tubing is a multi-millionaire and could easily abscond.

Vidal supported her objection by pointing out the recent case of David Nanes Schnitzer, who was granted bail, even though it was known that he was a potential flight risk, and later eluded authorities.

Paumen and another person were arrested last week; however, officers of the Special Branch Unit (SBU) of the Belize Police Department, released the other person on January 6th. On the eighth he was taken to San Ignacio where he was arraigned on four counts of ‘abetment to murder,’ to which he pled ‘not guilty’ and was remanded to the Belize Central Prison.

According to a police report, investigations into Paumen began on December 11th after reports surfaced that he had solicited a hit on Michael Modiri, the Iranian-American he’s had a less than civil relationship with. Sources close to the investigation indicate that a local attorney was also targeted in the plot.

Three days after Paumen’s arrest, the Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) issued a vaguely-worded report saying that on Monday, they found a .380 pistol with six live rounds, registered in Paumen’s name. The GSU said that the weapon was found on George Street gang turf, but gave no specific location as to where it was found.

More people are expected to be charged in conjunction with the case. The Belize Police Department has been very discreet, divulging as little details about the case as possible.

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