Lawyer says Mark Torre Jr. right to a speedy trial has been violated

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Mark Torre Jr., left, and his lawyer Jay Arriola (PNC file photo)

Mark Torre Jr.’s attorney Jay Arriola does not agree with the Superior Court’s position that a Supreme Court of Guam administrative order has suspended all jury trials.

Addressing Superior Court Judge Arthur Barcinas, Arriola went on the record to object to the ruling.

“This case has been proceeding with speedy trial commencing January according to the Supreme Court and we would object to further continuances and violation of the speedy trial act,” Arriola said.

Arriola objected to the Superior Court’s order and the Supreme Court’s order, “Which purports to suspend the Speedy Trial Act on Guam … and we want to make it very clear that in noway cape or form do we concede.”

It has been a couple of months since testimony was heard in the case or updates from the jurors were provided, Arriola says, adding that steps should be made on the record.

He then took it a step further, challenging the Supreme Court’s authority “to control” the calendar of the Superior Court. Arriola said the Supreme Court doesn’t have that right under its constitutional and organic act parameters.

Arriola also argued that the Supreme Court does not have the power to suspend the speedy trial act on its own without legislative authority. He says that is under the purview of the Legislature and without the legislature having acted, Torre’s right to a speedy trial continues to be violated.

Judge Barcinas, in response, has continued the hearing to October 22nd.

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Jolene Toves
Jolene joined the PNC team in 2017, as a producer, co-anchor and investigative reporter covering law enforcement, courts and crimes. Notable coverage includes the Ehlert case, the Mark Torre Jr. trial, the Allan Agababa trial, exclusive pieces on the Life of a Drug Dealer/Addict, and Life behind bars...the story of Honofre Chargualaf and Kevin Cruz. In 2019, she was promoted to Assistant News Director and Lead Anchor. From 2015 to 2017 she served as Public Relations and Promotions Manager, for the Hotel Nikko Guam handling local radio and advertorial promotions, as well as produced and directed tv commercials for the hotel. Prior to this she worked with KUAM for three years as a reporter and segment host. She began her journalism career in 2012, working with Glimpses of Guam contributing to the Guam Business Magazine, R&R magazine, MDM magazine and the Marianas Business Journal.