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Jul 11, 2019

Escape Prisoner Joseph Budna is Recaptured in Camalote, Cayo

Joseph Budna

Escape prisoner Joseph Budna has been captured in Belize and remains in custody. Back in May of this year, the thirty-eight-year-old Belizean, who is serving a thirty-year sentence in a Guatemalan prison for kidnapping and escape, absconded from lawful custody while at a hospital in San Benito, Guatemala. It is the second time that he escaped in the same fashion.  In 2014, the former freelance reporter fled from a trio of prison officers assigned to escort him to a hospital in Zacapa, where he was receiving medical treatment.  On the heels of his May escape, and after correspondence from its Guatemalan counterparts, the Belize Police Department issued an all-points bulletin for his arrest, should he turn up in Belize.  He was spotted in Camalote this morning and taken into custody at the Belmopan Police Station.  Now, there is no extradition treaty between Belize and Guatemala so it is not clear how this matter will proceed to get Budna back to Guatemala.  While ACP Joseph Myvett spoke briefly on the recapture, Commissioner of Police Chester Williams back in May shared the process to send Budna back to Guatemala.


Chester Williams

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police [File: May 28th, 2019]

“We were alerted yesterday by [the Ministry of] Foreign Affairs that he had escaped from some hospital in Guatemala or somewhere in Guatemala and is currently being sought by Guatemalan authorities.  And so yes, we have also put out an all points bulletin here in Belize with a view to apprehend Joseph Budna and once he is apprehended then we will go through the necessary protocols through Foreign Affairs to see where it goes from there.”



“Do we have extradition protocols with Guatemala?”


Chester Williams

“We don’t, but we can have some agreement.  There is no extradition treaty, but by way of protocol we can make arrangements.”


Joseph Myvett

ACP Joseph Myvett, Head, National Crimes Investigation Branch

“This morning, I believe shortly after nine—the details are still sketchy—police carried out an operation in Camalote Village where one Joseph Budna was found at a home and he has been taken into custody at this point in time. No other information is yet available. As I said, this is something that just recently occurred earlier this morning.”

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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