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Man fined $55 for drinking $2.50 beer in public

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Posted: Wednesday, June 22, 2022. 10:38 am CST.

By BBN Staff: A Lighthouse beer retails for about $2.50, but retiree Andrew Elijio, 65, ended up having to pay $55 for drinking in public.

Elijio was taken to the Belize City Magistrate’s Court this week charged with public drinking and wasted no time pleading guilty but told the Magistrate that he was doing so with a condition.

He explained that he did commit the offense, so he pleaded guilty, but that the arresting officer never actually saw him commit the offense, and argued that under Section 59-B of the Summary Jurisdiction Procedure Act, Chapter 99 of the laws of Belize, the Magistrate was under obligation to dismiss the case.

However, the court did not agree with Elijio’s defense, explaining that the section he quoted does not apply in his particular incident. He was then fined $50, which is reportedly double the usual fine for the offense, plus the $5 cost of court which he must pay by July 15, or he will have to spend two weeks in jail for default.

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