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Dec 22, 2008

L.A.P.D. investigating Belize City security company

The bad news continued with another report that the owner of a Belize City security company is being investigated by the Los Angeles Police Department. According to media reports coming out of the U.S., forty-nine year old Johnny Baltazar, owner of Elite Security, is being investigated for allegedly smuggling several handguns into Belize last year. In February 2007, Baltazar is said to have bought eight point forty caliber glocks from the L.A.P.D. Academy store and in July shipped them, along with two nine millimeter guns and over fifteen hundred rounds of ammunition in a safe to Belize. It is alleged that Baltazar did not declare the guns or ammunition in shipment paperwork and instead said that the safe was empty. The article goes on to say that when Belizean officials discovered the guns were inside the safe and determined they were not legal, the safe was returned to the U.S. and seized by customs officials there. Baltazar, who was assigned to the West Los Angeles Division, has been suspended with pay pending a disciplinary hearing. He is accused of exporting firearms without a license, failing to declare firearms he exported, and failing to notify his L.A.P.D. superiors that he was under federal investigation. An official in the L.A.P.D. told the reporter that Baltazar also did not have a department-issued off-duty work permit, required for officers who work second jobs. In order to maintain his business in Belize, Baltazar had what is called a compressed schedule where he worked ten to twelve hours per day three to four days a week. When we contacted Elite Security in Belize City, the manager told us it is the first he’s heard of it and knows nothing of the investigation.

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