THIRTEEN years after the mayor of a Costa Blanca town was shot in the face and left to die in hospital the arduous trial of seven defendants has collapsed without any convictions.

Alejandro Ponsoda was murdered by three bullets as he was pulling in to park at his home in Polop, just inland from Benidorm.

But the key defendant, Ponsada’s political successor Juan Cano, has this week been acquitted by an Alicante jury along with six other defendants and alleged accomplices.

The prosecutor’s main, a nd only, witness testified that Cano conspired with a local businessman and the owner and manager of a brothel to contract three killers to whack Ponsoda.

The request was 25 years prison for all seven defendants, plus two years on top for the three alleged murderers for possessing illegal firearms. 

The jury at Alicante’s Audiencia Provincial however voted five against four that all seven were innocent and the meeting in the VIP room of a brothel never happened.

“Leave me alone, I’m a normal person again,” Juan Cano told reporters outside the court’s doors after his acquittal ended 13 years of being on trial.

It comes as investigators found no evidence of any bullet casings nor DNA traces at the scene of the brutal crime that left Ponsada languishing for eight days in hospital.

The seven defendants were arrested purely on the testimony of the prosecutor’s main witness, without sufficient corroborating evidence to prove its veracity.

The case, over a decade later, remains unsolved.

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