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Apr 12, 2011

2004 Belize Bank robbery case falls apart

Five persons, including the bank manager, were arraigned on Monday in connection with the robbery at the Orange Walk branch of Heritage Bank. Just as that case got underway, a retrial against three men for a previous bank heist in that district came to an end. Six men are believed to have carried out the broad daylight holdup at the northern branch of the Belize Bank back in 2004, but one of them was killed in a crossfire with the police. Israel Carpio, Timotheo Jimenez and Juan Rivas Arce were on trial since March fourteenth and during a voir dire in the Supreme Court, Justice Denis Hanomansingh ruled that caution statements given by the accused men were inadmissible evidence. The judge concluded that the caution statements were not freely given, since all three men alleged that they were beaten by police. Other reasons included that the prosecutor failed to call several police officers who were involved in the case to testify.  The prosecutor, Cecil Ramirez, had to throw in the towel because his case depended heavily on the statements in which Carpio, Jimenez and Rivas admitted that they were involved in the robbery. As a result, the jury was ordered to find the men not guilty. The heist was carried out just before midday on March second, 2004. Witnesses at a nearby store saw an old van pull up near the bank, five armed men exited and vehicle went around the side of the building. Police were alerted and a shootout ensued when they arrived at the scene. When the gunfire stopped, Gregorio Rivas Ayala, the father of Juan Rivas Arce, laid dead and his five accomplices had escaped with over fifty thousand dollars in cash. The three suspects were initially tried for the robbery in 2007 and a retrial was ordered when the jury could not reach a verdict. The DPP’s office has indicated that it will review the ruling to determine whether there are grounds for an appeal.

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9 Responses for “2004 Belize Bank robbery case falls apart”

  1. rod says:

    another useless judge where in the hell is this gov. and pm getting these judges from i guess from the same pool of incompetent people as the rest of this gov.

  2. islander says:

    I know for a fact that the Police did use force to get the caution statements from this guys admitting that they robbed the bank. One of them the skinny kid who’s dad was dead was actually in Caye Caulker the day the robbery happened, this same skinny guy was brutalized by cops until one of his testicles burst and he had to hospitalized.

    The other two I cannot vouch for but the son of the guy who got killed was working in Caye Caulker the day the robbery happened. He was picked up so that cops could look good in the eyes of the citizens, a statistical arrest. and then brutalized so he could admit to doing the robbery.

    If pain is inflicted on you to the point where your testicle bursts I am sure you will say you did it just so that the torture stops.

  3. Justice says:

    So Justice Denis Hanomansingh ruled that caution statements given by the accused men were inadmissible evidence. Hmm I wonder if money was passed or threats were issued I wonder……

  4. injustice says:

    What a disgrace…..

  5. Jer says:

    It looks like the displeasure with Ashcroft is even spilling over into the court room especially with this robbery case where that specific case fell apart. Whatever happened to security cameras? It was the Belize Bank that got robbed right. NO WONDER THIS CASE FELL APART. CAN YOU IMAGINE BANK ROBBERS, of all the nerves, GETTING OFF SCOTT FREE???????????? THIS IS UNHEARD OF!!!! ONLY IN BELIZE THESE CRAPS HAPPEN AND IS HAPPENING TOO MUCH TOO OFTEN THESE DAYS. WHATEVER IS HAPPENING TO OUR JUDICIAL SYSTEM?????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????
    B E L I Z E – YOU WILL REAP WHAT YOU ARE SOWING!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  6. enuff mein! says:

    i da mi buss all dem ……….. we need zero tolerance on crime. i see the great work the GSU did last week, and i support it. what WAS stupid was one of the women whose houses was enetered on the news later on saying they no gat no right to do it, bla bla bla….oh stop cry!!!!! if you want stop crime, these are the measures we have to take. i remember when i was a teenager, on vacation in san pedro walking with a friend, police would stop simple pedestrians and pat them down. especially those with their pants half way down their behinds. thats where we need to get back to!!!!

  7. enuff mein! says:


  8. lisa says:

    i told everybody, anyone can get away with anything in belize. even murder.

  9. my 2cents says:

    Seem like you all are surprised. Why is that? I’m not surprised.

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