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Sep 28, 2020

A Deeper Dive into Boots’ Invoices

Minister Anthony “Boots’’ Martinez was in the hot seat last Friday.  According to documents presented in the House of Representatives, Martinez and his daughter, Stacey, have received hefty payments from government.  When the matter became public in 2016, Stacey appears as the vendor for payments of rent presumably for office space for the ministry; she collected more than half a million dollars in rental payments.  After the matter was brought up by Opposition Leader John Briceño, Martinez denied he received payments. Hipolito Novelo breaks it down.


Hipolito Novelo, Reporting

A trove of government invoices was the Opposition’s ammunition on Friday as P.U.P. Leader John Briceño targeted Minister Anthony ‘Boots’ Martinez and his family.


John Briceño, Leader of the Opposition

“Yesterday I got a bunch of payments that have been issued by the ministry of human development. Payments made to the minister and to members of his family totaling one point five million dollars.”


John Briceño

Minister Martinez was not in the chambers when Briceño began leveling the charge of alleged corruption against him.


John Briceño

“I see one member of the minister’s family gotten ninety payments for rent of seventy thousand seven hundred and six dollars, five thousand three hundred and thirty five dollars, payment is just a little over a five year span.”


And as Briceño continued the onslaught Martinez stormed inside the chambers and took his assigned seat ready to snap back at Briceño. And by the looks of his shaking left leg, Martinez was ready and anxious to defend his reputation.


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

Anthony “Boots” Martinez, Area Rep., Port Loyola

“Madam Speaker, I am member of this House you know. And those men cannot distort. They don’t have no information of me collecting any four thousand dollars from my ministry. I will have to tell you about your dad who went to jail.”


The first set of invoices names Anthony John Martinez as the vendor. The transactions show monthly payments of six thousand three hundred dollars for operational expenses, community assistance and sports- an allowance that each member of the house receives.

But there are also two monthly transactions that Briceno brought up. According to the documents, Martinez was paid “rental” monies. Details of what was rented are not confirmed. The details shared are seven thousand seven hundred and sixty dollars for CON#117 and four thousand eight hundred and thirty five dollars and five hundred and three hundred and thirty five dollars interchangeably for CON#70: a total of eleven transactions totaling some sixty-six thousand dollars. The first transaction is dated June twenty first 2016 and the last rent payments were in November nineteenth 2016.

Coincidently ten days before the last payment to Martinez, Martinez was questioned by reporters about the properties. He said back then that it was for his daughter, asserting that there was no conflict of interest as he did once again on Friday.


Hipolito Novelo

“But don’t see a conflict of interest there whether it be to you or your daughter? You are the minister. She is obviously your daughter. You are renting…”


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

“Let me tell you something. The Ministry of Human Development.”


Hipolito Novelo

“Is under your leadership.”


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

“Is rest, at you know where the Ministry of Human Development is at now? On Albert Street. I don’t know what he is reading from because those are not the facts and that is why I said in the house that he is an outright liar.  And he controls the shell gas station on Cemetery Road and the Shell gas station in Orange Walk. Millions of dollars you are talking about.”


Hipolito Novelo

“But that is different.”


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

“What is different? I said no. That is not so.”


Hipolito Novelo

“Because you are in government. It is your ministry and the transaction is saying.”


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

“But he is a member of parliament and that has been operating when he was in government too, sir.”


Hipolito Novelo

“Even now under your prime minister’s government.”


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

“Yes that’s what I am saying.”


Hipolito Novelo

“So clearly the Prime Minister doesn’t see anything wrong with it. What I saying the documents that he has there, he is reading the transactions. They show that your family has received thousands of dollars.”


Anthony “Boots” Martinez

“That is not so. I am telling you that is not so.”


But the invoices tell a different story.

The documents show that a month after Martinez stopped receiving monies for rent, his daughter Stacy Martinez began receiving the same amounts for CON#70 and CON#117 until the details changed in June and July in 2018 to CON#51 and CON#30.  The amounts remained the same from 2017 to 2020.

CON#30 changes to CON#35 with the last payment being on September eleventh 2020 for three thousand eight hundred and sixty four dollars and a pending payment for four thousand eight hundred and fifty four dollars.

Eighty-nine transactions totally more than half a million dollars. And while the Prime Minister halted Briceño from sharing more details, he too wants to know more about the transactions.


Prime Minister Dean Barrow

“You are talking about conflict of interest on the part of the member. You are raising the question of his conduct. You are imputing improper motive but generally you are raising the question of his conduct and to do that you can but you should have brought a substantive motion. That is all I am saying. You are saying this and that, I want to know too you know.”


Reporting for News Five, I am Hipolito Novelo.

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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