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Aug 30, 2005

Two security firms charged for unlicensed firearms

Police are taking a closer look at activities in Belize’s growing private security industry… and as a result, the proprietors of two companies have been charged with firearm offences. Pleading guilty yesterday in Magistrate’s Court to possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition was forty-two year old Gilbert Garcia, the manager of Security Oriented Services of Barrack Road. The gun in question was a point twenty-five calibre Colt pistol along with fifty-one matching bullets. Garcia told the court he found the gun at the M.C.C. Grounds and his staff had been using it for target practice. That explanation failed to impress Magistrate Margaret McKenzie who fined Garcia ten thousand dollars for the gun and another ten grand for the ammo. If the company can’t produce the money by year’s end, Garcia will spend a year in prison.

In the second case, this time in the court of Magistrate Emerson Banner, it was fifty-four year old Bobby Godfrey of Triple “A” Security in the hot seat. Godfrey pleaded not guilty to the unlicensed firearm charge, which involved a thirty-eight calibre Rossi revolver. Bail was set at three thousand dollars plus one surety of the same amount, which Godfrey met. He will reappear in court on September thirtieth.

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