No appeal in case of murdered British teenager

9th September 2005, Comments 0 comments

9 September 2005, PARIS — The Spanish waiter found guilty of murdering British schoolgirl Caroline Dickinson has withdrawn his appeal against his conviction in France.

9 September 2005

PARIS — The Spanish waiter found guilty of murdering British schoolgirl Caroline Dickinson has withdrawn his appeal against his conviction in France.

Francisco Arce Montes, 55, was convicted of raping and killing the 13-year-old in 1996, during a trial in 2004 and at a retrial in June, the BBC reported.

Caroline, from Launceston, Cornwall, died on a school trip at a Brittany hostel in July 1996.

Her family said they felt a "tremendous sense of relief" at Montes' decision.

The Spanish waiter launched an appeal immediately after the 2004 hearing and, under French law, he was allowed to have a complete retrial which took place in June 2005.

In the second trial he admitted suffocating Caroline while raping her at the hostel at Pleine Fougeres but claimed he had not meant to kill her.

He apologised to her family for her killing and the suffering he had caused.

The jury took just one hour to reject his defence and find him guilty.

Montes technically had the right to appeal against the second hearing on procedural irregularities, but Devon and Cornwall Police in Britain said he had withdrawn his appeal from the Supreme Court in Paris.

The force said it meant he had no further options under French law and should serve a 30-year prison sentence.

Caroline's father, John Dickinson, 49, said he heard the news from his lawyer, Herve Rouzaud Le Boeuf.

"The word closure is something I can use on this occasion.

"We now hope to be able to carry on with our lives and allow Caroline to rest in peace."

Born in Gijon, northern Spain, in March 1950, Montes had a long string of previous convictions for sexual offences.

He served three years of a five-year sentence for raping two girls in Germany between 1985 and 1988.
 
Montes: Had been arrested across Europe and in America

He was also arrested over assaults in France, Spain and Holland, as well as an attack in Miami, Florida, in 2001 that led to his extradition to France and trial.

It was a keen-eyed US immigration officer who ended the manhunt for Caroline's killer in April 2001.

Detroit airport-based Tommy Ontko tapped the Spaniard's details into a database after seeing him named by French authorities as a suspect in a week-old newspaper.

Just three weeks before, Montes had been arrested in Miami for breaking into a youth hostel and committing a lewd act in a female dormitory.

Ontko called Interpol and the French police in Brittany, and after DNA tests Montes was extradited to stand trial in France.

[Copyright EFE with Expatica]

Subject: Spanish news

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