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Belize City shop owner charged for 18 grams of marijuana; previous conviction made it difficult to secure bail

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Posted: Thursday, February 17, 2022. 8:44 am CST.

By BBN Staff: A Belize City shop owner charged for 18 grams of marijuana almost did not receive bail in court this week, due to a previous conviction for the same offense.

Thirty-one-year-old Cindy Lui Mai appeared unrepresented in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court yesterday, where she pleaded not guilty to the charge of possession of a controlled drug.

The prosecution did not object to bail; however, the Magistrate noted to Mai that she had a previous conviction for the same offense last year when she was fined $2,000, of which only $500 has been paid.

Mai explained that at the time she was given the fine she was not working, but now she has a shop and a means of income so she will be able to pay. After paying $200 towards her outstanding fine, the court granted her bail in the sum of $300 plus one surety of the sane, which she was able to meet.

The court advised her that she cannot be charged again for any other offense while on bail, that she must ensure that if she has marijuana it is the legally permitted 10 grams.

She is due back in court on April 1.

Mai was charged on Tuesday, during a search conducted by the anti-gang unit GI3. Prior to the search, the officers asked Mai if she had anything to declare and she gave up the marijuana she had.

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