A Corozal Town resident was sentenced to three years for drug trafficking this morning at the Corozal Magistrate’s Court.
On October 9th 2016, Martin Blanco was detained and charged for drug trafficking.
Customs officials say Blanco was driving a Toyota van through their checkpoint and they saw him acting nervously. As a result, Police officials who were present proceeded to search the van and inside a compartment on the driver’s side they found five packages containing marijuana. The drugs were weighed at the Corozal Police Station, weighing 3,348.2 grams.
In Court, Blanco, who did not have an attorney to represent him, made a last minute attempt to challenge the Police prosecution’s case against him, claiming that the packages were somehow mischievously placed in the van. He also told Magistrate Patricia Arana that he had rented the van which he used as a taxi, implying that anyone who had used the van could have placed the drugs inside.
But Magistrate Arana dismissed the last minute excuses, telling Blanco that his defence did not shake the prosecution’s case. She further indicated that she had no doubt that the drugs were his.
In reviewing his antecedent report, Magistrate Arana learnt that Blanco had three previous convictions for similar matters, therefore she fined and confined him, imposing a three-year sentence plus a $10,000 fine, with another three years in default of payment.
The Court also ordered that the Toyota van driven by Blanco be confiscated and forfeited to the Government of Belize.