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Lawyers seek to move Bedford MS-13 murder trial

BEDFORD (AP) Attorneys representing a man accused of being an MS-13 gang member and slaying a Virginia teen want to relocate his January trial, saying news coverage has biased potential jurors.

Attorney Anthony Anderson said client Kevin Josue Soto-Bonilla, 21, can’t receive a fair trial in Bedford County, The News & Advance reported, citing court filings. Soto-Bonilla is one of five men charged with capital murder in the March 2017 death of 17-year-old Raymond Wood.

The defense motion said a local trial would lack due process because the national dialogue surrounding immigration and the news coverage of the case may have biased potential jurors. However, Commonwealth’s Attorney Wes Nance said he was confident a jury can be seated.

Three of Soto-Bonilla’s co-defendants are scheduled to be tried later this year.

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