Closing arguments scheduled in Williams retrial

| 11/27/2006

After four weeks of testimony, closing arguments were scheduled Monday, Nov. 27, in Houston in the retrial of former trucker Tyrone Williams, charged with 58 counts of conspiracy, harboring and transporting illegal immigrants. Nineteen of those immigrants died during a stifling trip during which they were locked in the back of Williams' trailer.

The Associated Press reports Williams faces a possible death penalty for his part in the 2003 smuggling operation. Williams' lead defense attorney, Craig Washington, told the jury that his client could not hear the cries from the trailer.

Williams, 35, lived in Schenectady, NY, but was a Jamaican citizen.

Media sources have reported that he is the only one of 14 people charged in the case who is facing the death penalty.

The Washington Post reported that seven people have been sentenced to prison in the case and sentencing for three others is pending. Charges against two were dismissed, and one man remains a fugitive.