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Texas man executed for killing Dallas police officer despite in

Thursday, August 15, 2002

HUNTSVILLE, Texas -- A man convicted of killing a Dallas police officer in 1988 was executed Wednesday despite protests that executing him violated international law.

Speaking English and Spanish, Javier Suarez Medina apologized for the crime, asked forgiveness from the relatives of the slain police officer and thanked the people of Mexico for their support in his case.

"I'd like to apologize to the Cadena family for whatever hurt and suffering I've caused them," he said in a statement that lasted several minutes.

The mother and son of the officer were among the witnesses.

Court appeals and protests against the execution argued Suarez was not told he could contact the Mexican consulate for help after his arrest, violating the 1963 Vienna Convention of Consular Relations.

Authorities have said Suarez, 33, gave conflicting information when asked about his birthplace, identifying Mexico and Texas. He spent most of his life in America and spoke English.

The U.S. Supreme Court, without comment, turned down the appeal about 90 minutes before the scheduled execution. Gov. Rick Perry then denied Suarez a 30-day reprieve.

Suarez was convicted of gunning down Dallas police Officer Lawrence Cadena, 43, during an undercover drug sting.

Prosecutor Lori Ordiway said Suarez filed many appeals, but only in the past week did his lawyers raise the issue of violating international law.

Similar appeals in Texas failed to save Stanley Faulder, a Canadian, and Miguel Flores, a Mexican.

There was little dispute Suarez killed Cadena. Cadena was shot in his car in a Dallas convenience store parking lot while trying to complete the purchase of what he thought was cocaine. The cocaine turned out to be fake.


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