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Government employee pleads guilty to drunk driving before test results finalized

Posted: Friday, January 6, 2023. 12:22 pm CST.

By Breaking Belize News Staff: A government employee has pleaded guilty to driving drunk in late December 2022.

On Thursday, 43-year-old Jorge Franco, an environmental officer with the Department of the Environment, appeared in the Belize City Magistrate’s Court charged with “drove motor vehicle with alcohol concentration above the prescribed limit,” to which he immediately pleaded guilty.

The Magistrate explained to Franco that the lab test results for the sample he gave police had not been finalized so sentencing will be reserved until then. Franco is scheduled to return to court on March 3 for sentencing.

Police say that on December 23, 2022, officers conducting mobile patrol between Miles 16 and 17 on the Philip Goldson Highway noticed a vehicle headed in the direction of Sandhill Village, swerving on the road before coming to a stop on the right-hand side. The officers went to speak to the driver, who they said had the strong smell of alcohol on him and had slurred speech.

Police escorted the driver, who they learned to be Jorge Franco, to the Ladyville Police station where he was arrested, charged, and released on $500 station bail.


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