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Former Marine in Philippines case claims innocence

Published on NewsOK Modified: June 27, 2013 at 4:03 pm •  Published: June 27, 2013

ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — A former U.S. Marine facing murder charges in the Philippines denied that he entered a home and shot a couple at his extradition hearing Thursday.

Timothy Kaufman, formerly of Knoxville, Tenn., is one of three men charged by authorities in the Philippines with the 2011 killing of a retired Northern Ireland police officer and his girlfriend.

Handcuffed and wearing a green jail jumpsuit, Kaufman took the stand and told the court he was not involved in the killing of David Balmer, 54, and 26-year-old Elma de Guia. The couple was found dead on Sept. 2, 2011, in a bedroom of a home owned by a local club owner who was friends with Balmer.

"Did you go in their house?" asked defense lawyer Mark Sacco.

"No," Kaufman answered.

"Did you shoot them?" Sacco asked.

"No," Kaufman said.

Kaufman said he was in the Philippines helping a friend with an electronics company and helping at the U.S. Embassy. He did not elaborate.

Assistant U.S. attorney Rick Belliss told the judge there is sufficient evidence against Kaufman to meet the terms of the extradition treaty with the Philippines. Sacco cast doubt on testimony from a maid that incriminated Kaufman.

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