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Jun 15, 2015

Belizeans Detained in Santa Cruz…

The detention of five Belizeans in Guatemala, and the alleged abuse of those detainees, has resulted in a formal protest being forwarded to Guatemala. It’s an incredible story which started making the rounds on Saturday – five Belizeans who were allegedly hanging out in the Guatemalan village of Santa Cruz, just across the border from Jalacte in Belize, when they were detained. Details at that point were sketchy, though it was confirmed that one of the men was a Punta Gorda Town Councillor, Ashton McKenzie. The men were released on Sunday and transported back across the official border point in Melchor. And that’s when the shocking tale came out. Mike Rudon spoke to Councillor McKenzie today and he related the experience which he says he was sure would have been his last. He says they were at a restaurant when they were approached by military and asked to leave. Before leaving, McKenzie claims he and his four companions asked for and received permission to buy sodas at a nearby store, and that’s when things went south.


Ashton McKenzie

Voice of: Ashton McKenzie, Detained in Guatemala

“When arriving there we were surrounded by the military personnel and an off-duty Lieutenant who then approached us and told us that we would have to go back deeper into Guatemala with them. They told us that we would have to go back with them and weapons were already pointed at us and they told us that if we tried to run they would shoot us, kill us. We complied with them. We were very cooperative. We turned back and we started to walk. When we started to walk they told us we would have to run. We ran approximately four miles with weapons pointed at us. After running for four miles Ray Martinez told them that he had a heart condition and he wasn’t feeling well so they slowed down a bit and instructed us to sit on the grass. They asked us if we wanted water and we accepted the water that they gave us. Then we got up and they instructed us to face the grass. One of the intoxicated military officers instructed his military personnel to crank their weapons and aim. We were facing a grass pasture, and we were very frightened. At that point in time I said Lord, if this is the way I’m going to die then I have to accept it. I was just waiting to be shot at that point in time.”

Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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1 Response for “Belizeans Detained in Santa Cruz…”

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