Crime General — 22 July 2014 — by Rowland A. Parks
Two men found guilty of burglary: one fined, the other gets 5 years in absentia

Two Belize City men who were each being tried for one count of burglary before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer were found guilty of the offense at the conclusion of their case late this morning.

Frazer imposed a $1,000 fine on Christopher Gillett, 19, one of the two accused who was present in court. Gillett, who was a minor when he was charged for the offense which occurred on February 17, 2012, was ordered to pay his court fine by October 31.

The other accused man, Keron Swasey, 20, who did not appear in court today, was sentenced to 5 years in prison in absentia.

Police charged the two with burglary after they entered, as trespassers, the home of Emily Stanley, located on Fabers Road in Belize City. Stanley did not see the two when they entered her home.

The two convicted men made off with six Oran glass louvers, three metal chairs, a table and a basin.

The men later took police to two separate locations where the stolen items were found.

Gillett took police to a home in the Caesar Ridge area of Belize City, where police recovered the six Oran glass louvers, while Swasey, said police, took them to another Belize City home, where the metal table and three metal chairs were recovered.

In his defense this morning, Gillett gave an unsworn statement in which he told the court that it was Swasey who came to his home one day and asked him if he knew anyone who wanted to buy some Oran windows.

After Swasey showed Gillett the louvers, he (Gillett) told him that he did not know of anyone who wanted to buy them, said Gillett.

Gillett maintained that he never participated in the burglary, and that he dismissed Swasey’s invitation to do so, because at that time, he was in the process of changing his lifestyle, he told the court.

He insisted that it was Swasey who told him of the burglary. And he said he was only linked to it due to the type of individuals with whom he used to associate. He begged the court to believe his version of the story.

The Senior Magistrate, however, was not convinced and found both men guilty, saying that the prosecution had proved its case against them, and it was her view that they both acted together in committing the burglary.

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