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Dec 19, 2017

Pair in Cocaine Moved Charged and Jailed

Carlos Lopez & Peter Schmitt

A duo was arraigned today in the Magistrate Court for a cocaine bust made in the City over the weekend. The men are from Caye Caulker and Lords Bank, Belize City. Information is that they were being monitored and on Sunday police moved in on them. Aside from the five kilos of cocaine stashed in a knapsack, police also found a gun and ammo in their vehicle. News Five’s Isani Cayetano has an update on this major drug bust. 

 

Isani Cayetano, Reporting

The past week has seen at least two unrelated cocaine seizures in the Corozal District and Belize City, respectively.  While the police department has been diligent in its pursuit of local marijuana smugglers, it has also been keeping a close eye on movements within the illicit narcotic trade.  After reportedly shadowing a pair of men at a café in Belize City sometime earlier, police were later able to nab them on High Crest Avenue in the Buttonwood Bay area on Sunday afternoon.  Thirty-three-year-old Carlos Lopez, a resident of Lord’s Bank Village, and thirty-seven-year-old Peter Schmitt of Caye Caulker, were pulled over while driving this white Toyota 4Runner.  Inside the compact, mid-size sport utility vehicle were five bricks of cocaine, each weighing approximately one kilogram.  The drugs were stuffed inside a knapsack on the backseat, while a nine millimeter handgun with eleven matching rounds of ammunition was stashed beneath the passenger seat of the vehicle.

 

Edward Broaster

ACP Edward Broaster, Operations Commander [File: December 18th, 2017]

 “Yesterday at about 2:30 p.m., we conducted an operation in Belize City where police intercepted one white 4Runner with license plate BCC48344 and a search was conducted on the vehicle where five plus kilos of cocaine was discovered.  One nine millimeter pistol, along with eleven rounds of ammunition.  Two persons were arrested and they will be charged and taken to court today.

 

Reporter

“Where?”

 

ACP Edward Broaster

“This was in the Buttonwood Bay area.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“Can you provide us with the names?”

 

ACP Edward Broaster

“We will provide you with the names as soon as they are charged.”

 

Reporter

“Was this a routine checkpoint or acting on information received?”

 

ACP Edward Broaster

“This was as a result of a sophisticated operation.  We had surveillance on the two suspects in a café where they were discussing this said drug transaction.  And as a result of the combined efforts of the anti-narcotics unit, the Special Patrol Unit and the Mobile Interdiction Team, we were able to apprehend these suspects with the cocaine and the firearm.

 

Reporter

“How was it concealed in the vehicle?  We saw recently in Corozal where the drugs were in a hydraulic sealed compartment.  Was there anything like that level of sophistication?”

 

ACP Edward Broaster

“Nothing to that modus.  The drugs were in a knapsack on the backseat and the firearm was under the passenger seat of the said vehicle.

 

The duo appeared before Senior Magistrate Aretha Ford this afternoon at two, where they were jointly charged with the offenses of kept unlicensed firearm and ammunition, and possession of a controlled drug with intent to supply.  The men were both denied bail but were informed that they can apply for release under security through the Supreme Court.  Until then, they are being held on remand at the Belize Central Prison until March eighth, 2018.  Reporting for News Five, I am Isani Cayetano.

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