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July 17, 2014
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Money-swallowing case set for July 25
Christopher Thomas, STAR Writer

WESTERN BUREAU:

The case against a Venezuelan man, who reportedly swallowed approximately US$103,000 (J$11,446,924.57) to avoid declaring the money to customs earlier this year, has been deferred to July 25 to allow the defendant an opportunity to get needed medical treatment.

Forty-year-old businessman Eddie Ortega, from San Antonio in Venezuela, was remanded in police custody after being given the new court date, when he appeared in the Montego Bay Resident Magistrate's Court yesterday.

It is alleged that on January 20, 2014, Ortega arrived at the Sangster International Airport, Montego Bay. While he was in the line waiting to be processed, officers, acting on information, approached him and subsequently interviewed him.

Ortega was later transported to hospital, where he excreted a number of parcels, which were found to contain money amounting to US$103,000. Following this, he was arrested.

Yesterday, Ortega's attorney, Trevor Ho Lyn, asked presiding magistrate Carolyn Tie to allow his client to seek medical treatment as the defendant had to be hospitalised on a previous occasion.

RM Tie also instructed clerk of the court Natalie Malcolm to have a pretrial conference with attorney Ho Lyn, in order to finalise preparations for Ortega's trial. The case was subsequently set for mention on July 25.

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