Three members of the Corozal Police Department are facing serious accusations of alleged threats and extortion by a resident of Corozal Town. Elijio Briceno has given CTV-3 News an account of brazen abuse of power by police officers. According to Briceno, he was returning from a trip to Chetumal when he picked up a friend who was waiting for transportation at the border. Upon arriving in Corozal Town and going into a grocery store, Briceno says the Police pulled him out of the store and told him that they found marijuana on his friend. From there things just got worst as Briceno says he was taken to a secluded area along the ferry road where he was threatened with charges if he did not pay up. Here’s his account.


noimageElijio Briceno, Accuses Police Officers of Extortion, Abuse & Threats


“My friend that I picked up from the side of the road and from there they had took me to the bushes going towards the ferry and they were requesting that I give them three thousand dollars so that way I can walk away and they would leave me alone and wouldn’t bother me no more, it was three police officers, from there we made arrangements to receive the money, they took me back to my house, they dropped off my vehicle from there they took me to the station, they arrested me and put  me into the cell after a couple hours they brought me my cellphone were I was told to unlock it and call my family so that way they can make an arrangement to receiving the money the next day, I was informed that my family had paid them two thousand dollars.”


Briceno says he was held overnight at the Police station without formal charges. He said the following morning he was refused phone calls and told that they would charge him for insulting words. This is despite the fact that Briceno’s family had already been extorted.


Elijio Briceno, Accuses Police Officers of Extortion, Abuse & Threats


“After that hour had passed, I was pulled out of the cell and put into the interrogation room where they informed me that they had the officer collecting the money at Western Union on camera and as well as at the bank changing the check of two thousand dollars that they also had found the paper where he wrote the pin number for the Western Union and the name of the Social Security Card that they used in order to receive the money, the person that they sent the money to had nothing to do with the situation.”


Briceno gave a statement which triggered another case of internal investigations by the Police Department. Evidence gathered has led to some action against the officer caught on camera collecting the money, but Briceno says all three men continue on duty. He also claims that because he has requested an investigation, he feels that his safety and security are under threat.


Elijio Briceno, Accuses Police Officers of Extortion, Abuse & Threats


“I have seen them in uniform, they followed me, one of them acted like he was going to hit me with the car and then just drove by really close, he was on the opposite side of the road the he belong on because I was walking on the right hand side was coming on towards traffic so he belong on the left side so definitely didn’t feel safe with that because he was the same one that told me that he would kill me.”


Reporter


“Would you be able to say why is it that you decided to go public?”


Elijio Briceno, Accuses Police Officers of Extortion, Abuse & Threats


“The reason why am going public with this situation is because for my safety because if anything does happen to me within this time that it is them, a friend of theirs, I can’t go nowhere without been followed stared at, I was walking by the police station with my daughter and they are calling me Mr. two thousand dollar bail and I basically just told them good afternoon so I didn’t’ see no reason for no remarks.”


When we contacted the Corozal Police we were informed that disciplinary actions have been taken against the officers in question. Tonight though, we are unable to confirm what those actions are.

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