BELIZE CITY, Wed. Nov. 24, 2021 — During a virtual Supreme Court hearing on Tuesday of this week, the four police officers charged in connection with the thwarted narco operation near Bladen Village in Toledo were granted bail in the sum of $40,000 each. Officers Nelson Middleton, Delwin Casimiro, George Ferguson, and Elmer Nah were all granted bail and released under some strict conditions.
The proceedings, which took place in the chambers of Justice Antoinette Moore, ended a little before midday, with the attorney representing the four officers, Richard “Dickie” Bradley, securing bail for his clients at the end of his arguments.
We understand that five others involved in this incident were also granted bail. Michelle Trapp is reportedly representing at least one of those persons, while Ronnell Gonzalez is reportedly representing two or three persons — reportedly Mennonites — who were among the persons detained in connection with the Bladen bust. It has been reported, however, that 2 detained persons who remained unrepresented were sent back to the Belize Central Prison, since no bail application was presented on their behalf, and according to claims made by Richard “Dickie” Bradley, those persons were beaten while in police custody.
“Those persons are a gentleman Perez, a businessman from up north who has a mechanic shop and one of his employees. Those are the ones who took a beating from the police. Have you seen the pictures? I will have their attorney Rodriguez get the pictures to you. It’s crazy and don’t hear a word about that. That is what the media also need to focus on, that 2, if not 3 of the men who were on the highway — 2 of the men, because they are Spanish and because they come from up north and they probably thought they were Mexicans, they beat those men cruelly — had to be taken to a hospital,” Bradley told reporters.
According to reports, during the bail hearing, the prosecution argued that bail should have been withheld for at least 9 months to give the investigators more time to piece together information that would allegedly show even more deep-rooted wrongdoing within the Police Department — a well-coordinated rogue operation among officers.
Bradley, in speaking to reporters after the hearing, classified that line of reasoning in the arguments of the prosecution as worrisome.
According to Bradley, there was an explicit assertion in the arguments of the prosecution that officers at the highest level of the Police Department are in a working relationship with drug cartels and their agents.
“It is a frightening thing to tell us, that the Police Department in this country has been infiltrated by cartels and cartel agents,” Bradley commented.
He added, “We mi think we noh safe; well now we really noh safe if half of this is true — that the men and women we pay to protect us are using their training, their weapons, their access to information….,” Bradley said before digressing to point out that these officers who are assigned to special units and intelligence operations are able to tap our phones at any time.
He calls the argument presented in an effort to keep the men imprisoned very serious and says the Commissioner of Police would have some questions to answer.
“In a determined effort to keep them in jail on the grounds that these are extremely dangerous people who are hell-bent on committing very, very serious crimes. What if we go the other route, that they can assassinate Minister of Government, that they can take out people who are journalists who may be asking questions. This is a very, very serious matter, and is all that I can say having heard it,” Bradley remarked.