MANAGUA, NICARAGUA (The Daily Mail) – A Nicaraguan court has convicted a dual U.S.-Nicaraguan citizen of killing a nursing student in New York state after an unusual trial that saw many witnesses testifying by long-distance video conference.
Orlando Tercero, 23, was was found guilty on Friday of the March 2018 killing 22-year-old nursing student Haley Anderson, who was found strangled in his bed in Binghamton, New York.
He was convicted of the Nicaraguan crime of Femicide, which covers the domestic or sexually motivated murder of women.
Tercero fled to Nicaragua the day after the killing, and the trial was held in the Nicaraguan capital of Managua because the Central American nation’s laws forbid extradition of its citizens.
Witnesses at the trial said that Tercero had some kind of romantic relationship with the victim, but became enraged when she rebuffed his demands for a more serious relationship and began dating other men.
Broome County District Attorney Steve Cornwell confirmed Tercero’s conviction at a press conference in upstate New York.
Haley’s parents, from Westbury, Long Island, stood alongside Cornwell as he announced the conviction.
The Broome County District Attorney’s office in New York facilitated testimony by witnesses who spoke with the help of a translator via a video link from a room in the district attorney’s office in downtown Binghamton.
One of the witnesses, a police investigator, testified via the video link that Tercero left a note at his residence saying he was sorry.
‘We saw something that we haven’t seen before, but we saw two governments working together, law enforcement agencies working together,’ Cornwell told the Binghamton Press & Sun-Bulletin after the verdict was announced.
‘Although not what we wanted, we wanted to have the trial here, but we saw justice take place in a courtroom on an international stage,’ he continued.
After Haley was found dead months later, Tercero reportedly told his sister that he had done ‘something bad’ and was a ‘disgrace to the family’.
The killer absconded to Nicaragua the next day, but was quickly arrested there.
A photo of his arrest shows Tercero with a bandage across his left eye and a busted lip surrounded by Nicaraguan police wearing balaclavas.
Sentencing is expected to take place within days, and Tercero faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in a Nicaraguan prison.
The country’s prisons are notoriously violent and lawless, with frequent deadly inmate uprisings.
Haley’s parents have said that they hope Tercero receives the maximum sentence.