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20-year-old takes rap for weed possession

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Posted: Friday, October 16, 2020. 2:52 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Belize City resident Herman Austin Ciego, Jr.,20, must pay out thousands in fines after pleading guilty to possession of cannabis found at a residence on Central American Boulevard.

Police searched the residence of 53-year-old Wendell Wordsworth Arnold and his wife, Sharon Elizabeth Arnold, and found 218 grams or 7.69 ounces of marijuana in a black plastic bag tucked in the fence.

Also charged were three females: a 17-year-old minor; 23-year-old Kayla Marie Johnson; and 40-year-old Chevonne Tiffany Gabb who reside at separate addresses.

In court, Ciego, Jr. pleaded not guilty to drug trafficking but guilty to simple possession. However, after the prosecutor made checks with his superior at the Prosecution Branch Office, he returned with the news that they had to proceed only with the drug trafficking charge and so Ciego Jr. pleaded guilty to that.

As Ciego, Jr. is a first-time offender, Magistrate Emmerson Banner only imposed a fine rather than a fine along with confinement.

Ciego, Jr. has until December 31, 2020, to pay the fine, or in default, he must spend 3 years in prison.

The charge was subsequently withdrawn from the others and they were free to go.


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