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Man released on clerical error heads to trial

September 11, 2013

BOSTON (AP) — Jury selection has begun in the murder trial of an East Boston man charged who was mistakenly released on bail because of a clerical error.

Jean Torres Vargas was originally charged with aggravated assault and battery in the 2010 beating of Michael Costa. He remained in custody after that arrest.

After Costa died 13 months later of his injuries, Vargas was indicted on a murder charge. But 10 days later, Vargas posted bail. Because a warrant charging him with murder was issued in the wrong name, he was not held. Vargas was captured about a month later.

Jury selection began Wednesday in Suffolk Superior Court. Opening statements to the jury are expected Monday.

Prosecutors said Vargas assaulted Costa at a bus stop, knocked him to the ground, beat and stomped on him.

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