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Capital murder trial of accused cartel killer responsible for 30 murders scheduled for June 2019 in Florida

September 23, 2018  |  Posted by: Michael Falzarano
Capital murder trial of accused cartel killer responsible for 30 murders scheduled for June 2019 in Florida

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The legal defense team for Jose Manuel Martinez, an admitted drug cartel hitman who left a trail of bodies across the U.S. are making preparations for their client’s capital murder trial scheduled for next year in Florida.

Martinez, 56, is charged with two counts of first-degree murder in connection with the deaths of two men in Ocala.

If convicted, Martinez faces the death penalty.

Martinez stands accused in the 2006 shooting deaths of 20-year-old Javier Huerta and 28-year-old Gustavo Olivares in Deland.

Police discovered the bodies of the two men in an abandoned Nissan pickup truck in the Ocala National Forest on Highway 19 just north of U.S. 40.

Prosecutors say Martinez allegedly contacted Huerta and Olivares to collect a cocaine debt that Huerta had owed to a drug cartel.

However, during the fatal meeting, Martinez allegedly executed the two men.

Self-confessed drug cartel hitman Jose Manuel Martinez will stand trial for the 2006 shooting deaths of two men in Ocala, Florida

DNA tests conducted on a cigarette butt found in the pickup ultimately connected Martinez to the double homicide.

Following his apprehension in 2013, Martinez reportedly admitted to killing more than 30 men for a Mexican drug cartel.

The presumed contract killer has already been convicted in 10 killings and one attempted murder.

He was first sentenced to 50 years in prison after pleading guilty in 2014 in Alabama to one count of capital murder.

Martinez was later given ten consecutive life sentences after pleading guilty to ten cartel-related murders and one attempted murder in California.

Following a status conference on Thursday in Marion County Court, Chief Assistant Public Defender John Spivey who is representing Jose Manuel Martinez said that depositions have been scheduled and defense witnesses are expected to be unveiled by the end of the year.

According to Ocala.com, Martinez’s trial is slated to begin on June 10, 2019, and is expected to last around two weeks.

He is scheduled to appear back in court for a pre-trial hearing on January 3rd.

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