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Sep 24, 2010

Criminal code bill to increase penalties for violent crimes

john briceno

As we said earlier, the House of Representatives met today. Nine bills were debated and passed. While the ruling party had a full show, noticeably absent were PUP representatives Mark Espat, Cordel Hyde and Florencio Marin. Nonetheless the Leader of the Opposition made it clear that the Criminal Code Bill, in his opinion would not do anything to deter criminals since the murder conviction rate is below ten percent. The bill, which was passed by the super majority in the House, will increase penalties for attempted murder, rape, carnal knowledge and other violent offences.

John Briceño. Leader of the Opposition

“Increasing the penalties on rape, carnal knowledge etcetera attempted murder will certainly have no effect on criminals since only a seven percent conviction rate. I think that what the government needs to do is strengthen the D.P.P. office for them to have more prosecutors so that they could increase the conviction rate. And probably Mister Speaker, it’s time for the government to hire private attorney to take on some of the more serious criminal cases against the criminals. We are already doing it for civil cases so I don’t see why we cannot do the same thing for criminal cases.”

Michael Finnegan, Minister of Housing

micahel finnegan

“If you notice section eighty-four of the principal act is amended by repealing two years and substituting it by fifteen years.  Everybody knows that the conviction record in the D.P.P.’s office is not what we want them to be. And we must do whatever we can to strengthen the D.P.P.’s office, but it doesn’t mean that at the same time we just wah sit down and make the criminals run ruckus over we and take over the country—the people have taken over the country. Everybody ‘fraid fi go out into the streets. You ‘fraid fi go out on a Friday night or Saturday night because you don’t know if you are the next person. You sit down pan the verandah like the poor lady sit down pan Zericote Street ina ih bed with ih pikney ina ih house wrap up and everything and some idiot, some crazy fool out deh just gone and fire gun because he have some beef with the next somebody that is connected to the yaad. Just shoot up wah gun, kill this poor lee gial endanger the other family members life. Mister Speaker, we have to put the necessary things in pace to prevent these things from happening. This country is not what we use to know it to be. The country is out of hand. The government is placed in a position where it has to do what it got to do in order to bring it under control. If then it is necessary to bring the B.D.F. alone to police and man certain section of the city then that is what we have to do.”

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21 Responses for “Criminal code bill to increase penalties for violent crimes”

  1. Robert says:

    Harsher penalties and better support for the DPP are not mutually exclusive. WE CAN AND SHOULD DO BOTH!!!

    It’s so obvious, even politicians should be able to see that.

  2. rod says:

    another udp and pup failure when will you people get it through your heads that the hanging penalty has to be brought back it has to be to hell with what the usa thinks this pm tries to please the us way way too much to the point of letting belizeans get killed because he refuses to bring back the hanging penalty well i can you the murders will continue because the udp this pm and the pup do not have the cojones to do what we all know must be done and that is to bring back the hanging penalty for murder and 55yrs in jail for attempted murder any one with a gun 25yrs in jail pup you dissapoint me you need to get with the people of belize and put it to a vote and youll see that the people are fed up fed up hang them tha bridgefoot only this will bring about change .

  3. blvnjah says:


  4. Concerned Belizean says:

    I am fed up of reading about opposition reps (Mark, Cordel, Florencio) absent from important house business such as this one. It is about time they stop behaving like spoiled brats and get on with the people’s business. Isn’t that their role as elected representatives?? Who are they representing if not themselves when they behave this way. These actions to spite Johnny are getting old.

    Concerned Belizean

  5. RedBwai says:

    The answer is simple…..bring back hanging!!! ….for the ones who have already been convicted of murder…..make an example of them…pop their necks in public for all to see!!!!!!

  6. Edith says:

    Ok so if they don’t wanna bring back hanging, then put something else in place. Buy an electric chair, do lethal injections just get rid of these people…

  7. Edith says:

    I agree with Robert, we should do both.
    On another note, in every election I’ve voted in I’ve voted for cordel. Not because I’m PUP but because I thought out of all the people running, he was the one that could n would b the voice of the people n have their best interest at heart n I think its showing poor judgement when he doesn’t show up for these meetings. Go for the people u represent, forget UDP, forget said musa, forget Johnny briceno.
    Right now u r giving them ammunition.
    Belizes best interest should b your only concern.

  8. Anti-Racism in Belize says:

    Rod: It’s so easy to criticise from the side lines when you are not in charge. Everyone thinks they can do a better job, even if they cannot read or write.

    Concerned Belizean: I agree with you, unfortunately these people in the PUP are jokers themselves. You’d think they’d jump at the chance of debating this high crime rate. They should have been present for this meeting, if no other one. It is very childish and it shows they are not thinking of the people either.

    When I think about our country its in very sad state of affairs. It is my opinion that this government has got to become tough on crime and even if we have to keep the BDF on the streets for some considerable time with machine guns to kill these fools, so be it. If Mr Barrow doesn’t fight his enemies who are trying to derail his office then he will regret it. I am glad to see that he is using the communications to intercept calls. If you have nothing to hide then what is the problem? Whilst we have people with evil intents in our midst none of us is safe.

    Belize also needs an injection of new people in politics. In the UDP we have had some people for at least 25 years. In the PUP we have had the same families for the last 30-40 years ( Espats, Musas, Shomans, Bricenos, Courtneys, Marins, Fonsecas) that cannot be right, clearly shows more nepotism on that side. These people have represented their families and few friends not the common people. While they point their fingers at UDP they haven’t done better for the people either. Mr PM has been in office the last two years. I’d like you to show me the development PUP did whilst they were in government. It should still be evident, shouldn’t it?

    But the fools will come on here and say “Resignnnnnnnnnnnn”, and “PUP all the wayyyyy” but they have no idea.

  9. jesse says:

    It is clear that this leaders(pup or udp) dont have a clue what a leader of a country suppose to do,introducing laws that dont bring justice to belizeans,because those laws unjust,just take for example that in belize belizeans phones are wire tap,with out cause,imagine,you are not a criminal,why should your phone be tap?which means the special police get to know your the way,no such things are done in a so call free country.

  10. jr says:

    do you hear what jhonny wants?private lawyers to win cases,so criminals end in jail,sounds like belize has very inconpetent lawyers who should be sending criminals to jail,here in the USA lawyers who city,town,or village lawyers are”FIRED”start doing the same in belize,send them to jail for doing their JOB.make it a crime for them not to do what they are getting pay for it.i am not a udp or pup deciple.but it sounds like jhonny is looking for job for lawyers,they are the only ones who seem to benefit from this bill.this is why belizeans life a life of missery,to much lawyers in belize,blood sucking lawyers.

  11. wilbert says:

    Wake up belizeans, will increasing the penalty help for crime and violence help? will putting more forces on the streets help? the prison is still a nice place to be , its better than living on the streets. three meals a day and no work to do, its like holiday back there. anyone ever thought about making prison a booth camp. criminals working for their food at least. be treated like criminals, bet they no want to go back there again, try something man, anything that will make a difference.

  12. BZNinCALI says:

    Thanks Anti-Racism, I agree with you wholeheartedly.

    We already have enough problems with corruption, hiring outside lawyers to prosecute certain cases opens us up to more of the same & possible conflict of interest. When Belize had a scholarship program based on merit, many of our people returned to serve the country & we need to return to some of those practices. Whatever happened to the offer from the American Bar to help train Prosecutors?

    Jr, even the blood suckers in Belize no longer feel safe & it would be nice to see a few of them step up & offer to work for the home team for a change.

    Finnegan mentioned the deserted streets & lack of night life. People who are free will shop, they will go out at night. Whatever the Government is saving by not hiring competent lawyers as full time employees to present their cases, they are losing in revenues because fear is keeping productive adults locked up in their homes.

  13. Al says:

    What Belize really needs is for Belizeans who have gotten an education abroad to go back to Belize and try to change conditions. The problem is that the politicians continue to do the same thing over and over and they keep getting the same loosing results. The education level has dropped so low that the poor people do not even know how to reason for themselves. I am completing my Masters and will return to Belize to teach Critical Thinking and Leadership. Hopefully I can teach in one of the universities and develop a beginning class to teach in the high schools. Our young people need to think differently, give them world situations to discuss possible sitution or take current events in Belize and have classes discuss and form ideas around what could be done differently to resolve the issues. I agree with jr, Belize politics is a family inherited, the country belongs to a few families. Belizeans need to get off their ….. and stand up for their right against the politicians and the criminals.

  14. Jerico says:

    I think what everyone had to say has merit and should be considered. However I especail thin the notion of long prison terms is outragious. If death penality is convicted the death penality should be enforced either by hanging, injection or by selection of criminal; but it should be enforced. We need not follow in the steps of usa or any country. We are Belizeans, why can we not learn from others country who problems have been overcome be vesting in what works instead of laying in bed with this country or that country. Crime in THIS country is getting out of hand and it spread to poor and rich.

    Our political leader is corrupt like many other nation. But unlike many other nation Belize is small in size and cannot affor coruption to go unchecked. If leaders are found to be corupt then it is they who should also do prison time and they’ land and wealth taken and given back to the people who they took it from. If the church is not up to the task of doing what is rite moraly or ethicaly then I say go support another church, our kid are our future and we cannot allow the curent events to continue.

  15. vicky says:

    First of all the Minister of Housing needs to speak properly before he begins his comments.

  16. CEO says:

    I am not a partizan kinda of person but where was Briceno when the country was getting to the point it is now? Why didn’t they do what he is only just now suggesting to do while they are now out of power, if this will make the country better? They should have killed it before it got this big! They were right there when the mess started.

    I am so sick and tired of all the dam politicians! They always have money to campaign but never enough to do any much more!

    The Belizean people needs to rise up against the crooks and hold the politicians responsible for the management of the country. If the country would be out of money and people are safe o the streets and in their homes, this would be an improvement compared to what we have now!

  17. Mellow Belizean says:

    Al, you are absolutely right. The only sad fact is that young people who get educated abroad and can bring a new perspective have to deal with a political climate where nepotism, victimization, and favoritism rule. We know Belize cannot pay the salaries available abroad but it can’t even offer job security?! Imagine you’ve uprooted your family and moved back to Belize only to lose your job to make room for a stalwart party supporter. Or, God forbid, a party faithful or Ministry CEO wants your land so your deed is null and void. People have lost so much for stupid reasons and that climate of uncertainty will never attract the type of bright mind we need. Yes, many Belizeans abroad would love to return home to make a difference, but apart from the current crime issue, we need to have petty politics (on both sides of the table) removed from the equation. Without that, Belize will remain wallowing in her shortcomings like a pig in $hit.

  18. living good in the usa says:

    That the reason John said “The government need to hire district attorney for each district ” and he right. The government of Belize needs to put the right thing in place that will be the first step for the people of Belize. Then they will need to hire better detective that will do a better job. everything will fall in to place if they do right thing.

  19. louisville,ky says:

    Al,…. ”the poor people do not know how to reason for themselves”.
    In a round about way Al, you are saying that for the most part the majority of Belizeans are uneducated and ignorant. I beg to differ. Maybe toleranant and indifferent but certainly not uneducated and uninformed. Yes, they certainly need to first of all, try to do more for self and hold the people they elected to office accountable.
    The situation in the country won’t get any better if, all my people do is complain and do the blame game.

  20. Jah says:

    Bring back hanging, that will certainly deter those bastard to not do crimes, try it and you’ll see a difference, we need Belize to be the way it use to be, Crime free, please Minister, bring back hanging

  21. missy says:

    bring back the hanging!!!!!!!!!!!!. We are tired of hearing loved ones being killed. (When you kill you die too.) thats better in decreasing crimes. Donèt let the criminals take over the country.

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