A freightliner truck registered to former *(DRUG BUST VO STARTS)* Deputy Prime Minister Hugo Patt and his brother, Pedro was reportedly involved in Wednesday’s drug bust in Ladyville, Belize District. Reports to our newsroom indicate that witnesses observed twenty-seven parcels of drugs transferred from the Kenworth truck to a Chevrolet TrailBlazer SUV which led to the detention of seven persons. Forty-eight hours three of those seven Belizean men detained were charged, namely 30-year-old, Ian Poot of Patchakan Village, Corozal; 56-year-old, John Edwin Bowen and 43-year-old, Eustace Oswaldo Andrews both of Belize City. Poot was charged with supplying a controlled drug while Bowen and Andrews were charged jointly with possession of controlled drugs with intent to supply to another. The men have since obtained the legal services of Richard Dickie Bradley who we met up with at the court house this evening.
Richard “Dickie” Bradley, Attorney at law: “Acting upon information the police special unit, the Assistant Commissioner of Police, the Commander’s Special Squad were able to do an intercept in relation to 28 kilograms of marijauna which if God is willing in another year or so it would be legal and these people would be treated as businessmen who are bringing money in to the country, instead they are treated as criminals. So Wednesday afternoon there was an operation, three or four vehicles were stopped in the Ladyville area and a box with weed was intercepted. Of the seven or nine persons that were detained, arrested and kept at the Ladyville police station for two days, sleep Wednesday night sleep last night and were there until this afternoon, only three persons have actually be charged. Those persons two have been charged for being in possession for the purpose of doing business and one was charged for being the person to be supplying it. The Magistrate Elis Arnold made the application to say that under the law there’s no reason to deny them bail, the Magistrate took the view that she would not grant bail so they had been remanded to prison until the 15th day of July but it is more than likely they will apply to a judge of the Supreme Court who will take a different view and will say there is no reason to keep them in prison on that type of charge.”
Dickie Bradley went on to tell the media that his clients were treated like animals during the arrest. He noted that they are now awaiting disclosure from the Poliie for him to begin building his defence on behalf of his clients.
Richard “Dickie” Bradley, Attorney at law: “They are of the view that the way they were treated, a lot of people don’t mind police detain you and check on and when the information they let you go you know but first of all they were forced to kneel on the road for almost two hours. They all lift up their pants and they have what you would call lacerations and bruises, it’s a rough thing to have people – what do you have them kneeling for ? They can’t stand up? They all can’t sit down ? They’re not animals, why did you do them that. Then a famous police officer who is well known he kicked one of them in their side just like that. All of them saw that but what is really hurtful is that you keep me for two days in a station. You don’t find me with no drugs my bwai, you didn’t see me carrying any box, what are you doing that to me for ? Isn’t that malicious ? That is what the court will take into account why you’re doing that to people because Marion Ali is saying to me oh you said this already and so, we lawyers have a duty to say this to the citizens of this country; the police have no right in law to hold you at any police station for five hours, ten hours, twenty whatever and then let you go that is an unlawful act and a violation of your constitutional right to your liberty. Belize people have to really stand up because government change and nothing else has changed. You can’t be chancing people like that papa, what will you kick a man for ? It’s against the law to kick a dog you know it’s cruelty to a dumb animal, what will you kick a man for ? What did you force him to kneel down on the street ? That is not the kind of country we want. What did they do ? They are dealing in weed ? The government didn’t say they’re going to legalize the weed? It doesn’t matter what, whatever you allege against a person don’t treat them as if they don’t count, as if they are nothing because they can’t go and kick people in high society they dare not do that. So that is the situation. So they did express their anger to be kept for two days and treated like that and they say the will sue a lot of time people say that and afterwards they say “I’ll leave them to God.” and then poor God is busy in Afghanistan and over in Iraq and so on.”
The men appeared before Senior Magistrate Aretha Ford, and are to return to court on July 15. As for the involvement of former Deputy Prime Minister’s nephew, Ian Poot, Love News spoke with Hugo Patt who admits that the freightliner is his family’s property, but is ordinarily used for the sugar cane family business. He says the family was in shock when they received the news, as all they know is that the truck was hired to do a delivery, and that the contents of that delivery were never revealed to them. Patt says it is important for the public to know that he was not involved in any way in this incident. Late this evening the Patt family issued a release stating, quote, “I completely and strenuously denounce the trafficking of any illegal drugs. I am fully cognizant of the devastating impact of drugs on our society, our families, and especially our youths and would never, ever condone or participate in its distribution. Any insinuations or aspersions cast on my character in connection with this incident will be met with appropriate legal action.” End of quote.