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4 of 6 foreigners are arraigned for drug plane landing

Posted: Thursday, September 12, 2019. 7:05 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Six non-Belizeans were brought in on September 9 after an alleged drug plane landed on the Coastal Road in the Village of La Democracia, Belize District, where police recovered thousands of pounds of cocaine.

But it was not without a fight, as two of the men were shot and injured and remain in the hospital. They are Allan Yovani Mejia Chirinos, 31, of San Pedro Sula, Cortes, Honduras, and 50-year-old Norlan Jose Carrasco Lopez,  also  of San Pedro Sula, Cortes, Honduras.

The other four are: Miguel Cruz Meseguer,69, of Tamaulipas, Mexico, David Noe Orellano Discua,30, of San Pedro Sula, Cortes, Honduras; Carlos Humberto Henriquez Gomez, 51, of San Pedro Sula, Cortes, Honduras; and Juan Pablo Larea Cruz, 43, of Guayaquil, Ecuador – were brought under heavy security Wednesday afternoon before Senior Magistrate Tricia Pitts Anderson, to be charged with possession of controlled drugs with intent to supply to others for the purpose of drug trafficking, some 1,341.3 kilos (2,957 pounds) of cocaine.

Meseguer and Cruz were additionally charged with abetment to the importation of controlled drugs and landing an aircraft without the permission of the Minister of Civil Aviation.

No plea was taken from the men, and the court provided the accused, except Cruz who spoke fluent English, with a Spanish translator so they could interpret the court proceeding at their arraignment.

After the charges were read to them, one of the four men said, “We do understand the charge and we do not accept.”

The four return to court on November 12, 2019.

Commissioner of Police Chester Williams, speaking to reporters, noted that the men entered Belize legally through one of the borders, and the owner of the property on which the illegal airstrip was located has no links to the accused or their actions.

La Tribuna of Honduras reports that police mobilized for a potential plane landing at several areas on Friday, and when the King Air landed around noon police were waiting.

But, Williams is quoted as saying, “While unloading the cargo, the security forces moved towards them then one of the vehicles with suspects attempted to flee, the officers chased him while others remained at the landing scene…the officers were shot and the officers returned the fire during which two of the suspects who fled were injured in the hand. All were arrested. The injured immediately transferred to the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital…

According to Williams, one of the vehicles had Honduran license plates and the other had no license plate. “As far as we know, these people arrived in the country days ago and could have done their own scrutiny and could have had knowledge of the area,” Williams said.


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