Honduran in Jail for Immigration Offense Print E-mail
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Thursday, 20 February 2014 00:00

Honduran Johnny Patricio Martinez,42, is in jail after he was unable to pay a fine for failure to comply with a visitor’s permit. Martinez was born in Honduras and got naturalized as an Italian. He arrived in Belize on July 28th of 2004 and was given a month to stay in the country.

On Tuesday, February 11th, immigration officials were conducting a routine search of immigrants in the Jane Usher Boulevard area and picked up Martinez. He could not provide any document to show that he is legally living in Belize and immigration officials launched a quick investigation into his immigration status. Records show that after his one month stay was completed in 2004 he received an extension for an additional month which ended on October 2nd, 2004. Almost nine and a half years later, he has not applied for an extension of that stay.

Martinez was escorted to the Belize City Magistrates Court on Friday, February 14th, where he pleaded guilty to failure to comply with a visitor’s permit. Magistrate Hettie-Mae Stewart fined him $1,000 and $5 cost of court which he was ordered to pay forthwith or serve six months imprisonment. Martinez was unable to pay the fine and was transported to the Belize Central Prison to begin serving a six months sentence.