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Prosecutors want suspects in other crimes

By Brett Kelman HAGÅTÑA, Guam (Pacific Daily News, April 29, 2010) - An alleged drug dealer caught in a Guam Police Department sting may trade information about a 1998 homicide in return for a lighter conviction and no jail time.

Kenrick Gajo has signed a proposed plea agreement that details this trade on Jan. 15. It was filed in the District Court of Guam on Tuesday.

None of the court documents filed in this case reveal which unsolved homicide Gajo has offered to provide information about, but Pacific Daily News files show only one unsolved murder that matches the description in court documents. The body of Dimla Schaller was found burnt beyond recognition in a flaming sedan on a dirt road near Route 15 on Nov. 20, 1998.

According to a District Court affidavit by FBI agent Frank Runles, police confronted Gajo at his auto shop in Barrigada on Jan. 14. A GPD informant had allegedly used traceable government money to buy methamphetamines from Gajo twice, so police officers had a warrant to search his shop and home, the affidavit states.

Instead, Gajo went with police to their headquarters, where he and his attorney, Curtis Van De Veld, negotiated the proposed plea agreement. Assistant Attorney General Phil Tydingco has signed the agreement, but it isn’t official until a judge approves it.

According to the proposed agreement, if Gajo’s information leads to the arrest and prosecution of one of his drug sources -- or someone linked to the 1998 homicide -- his possession conviction would be lowered from first-degree felony to a third-degree felony.

Gajo would not go to jail for this conviction either, the proposed agreement states.

Finally, of the US$167,000 of alleged drug profits police found stashed in two backpacks inside a pile of tires at the auto shop, Gajo would be allowed to keep US$30,000 to pay his attorney, the proposed agreement states.

The federal government has attempted to seize the remaining US$137,000, which is currently in a GovGuam bank account, according to District Court documents.

Regardless of what information Gajo may be provide, the proposed plea agreement wouldn’t shield Gajo from prosecution in the homicide case.

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