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#500648 - 02/03/15 12:51 PM Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez about to be charged in court
Marty Offline

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez has just walked into an Orange Walk court where he faces charges of molestation by two teens.

At the left rear of the PUP elected Area Representative for Orange Walk East is attorney Richard 'Dickie' Bradley. Standing on Marco Tulio's left is former UDP Campaign Manager and former Associated of Concerned Belizeans (ACB representative) Karim Berges. The UDP flag flies in the background.

An interesting composition indeed.

photo courtesy: Arturo Cantun

Jose Sanchez


Orange Walk East Area Representative and Chairman of the Northern Caucus, Dr Marco Tulio Mendez had his judgement day when he appeared at the Orange Walk Police station to face criminal charges on damning allegations of assault of an indecent nature. We will tell you about those charges momentarily but we will show you a timeline of the happenings at the police station today, including the bold move of a fanatical supporter who shielded Mendez from addressing the Media.

#500666 - 02/04/15 04:07 AM Re: Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez about to be charged in court [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Hon. Tulio Mendez Makes History Charged For Indecent Assault

Last week Monday, 7News broke the story of complaints against Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - the PUP Representative for Orange Walk East. And today - eight days later, he was criminally charged for 6 counts of aggravated assault of an indecent nature, becoming the first sitting member of the House of Representatives to be accused of child molestation. 7News was in Orange Walk Town when he was taken in for arraignment - and Jules Vasquez has the blow by blow account:..

Jules Vasquez reporting
At 1:35 pm Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez pulled up at the Orange Walk Police Station - he was flanked by two attorneys while his nephew Karim Berges walked beside him. He walked into the police station, which would also act as the courtroom today - since the Supreme Court was occupying the courthouse. The media was not allowed in - we were told it is a private matter.

By 2:15 pm, his attorney Dickie Bradley was outside - and he told us that Tulio Mendez would be out shortly and that he would give a short statement.

We waited - and coming unto 3:00 pm - police made all efforts to remove the media from the doorway.

Supt. Dennis Arnold, O/C Orange Walk
"Just give me a little break here."

Jules Vasquez
"Sir, we can't. We have to do our job and it is here that it is happen."

Supt. Dennis Arnold, O/C Orange Walk
"Look here man. You will tell me that. This is the police station. This is the compound."

Jules Vasquez
"I swear, I respect your authority. He just has to give us a word. He is answerable sir - 2,742 people voted for the man. He must could answer somebody."

Supt. Dennis Arnold, O/C Orange Walk
"Yes, but I don't mind you ask the man questions, but just dress back for me."

Jules Vasquez
"But you are making way for the man. We've been here all the while, and we haven't disturbed anybody."

Supt. Dennis Arnold, O/C Orange Walk
"You just have to make way for the man."

Jules Vasquez
"When you do, I will stand my ground sir, with greatest respect."

The police continued but the media held its ground:

Jules Vasquez
"Mr. Mendez, anything to say? Let me get an interview. Sir, anything to say? You are answerable sir."

Police ferretted Mendez back inside - while his attorney gave us an interview:

Richard Dickie Bradley, Attorney for Hon. Tulio Mendez
"The court read 6 charges to the Honorable Tulio Mendez; 4 counts in relation to one child and 2 counts in relation to the other child. These charges are listed as aggravated assault, which is the word that the law uses, but they are in relation to inappropriate touches. Bail was offered in the sum of $5,000, which under the law is a signed bail and he is required to return to court on the 13th day of April."

"These charges dated back to when?"

Richard Dickie Bradley, Attorney for Hon. Tulio Mendez
"They go back as far as 2005."

But while Bradley was talking - Tulio Mendez's escape facilitated by police was on - they let him through a side door and his vehicle went against the flow of traffic and with that he was gone no comment - no nothing - he other attorney filled in the blanks:

Andrew Bennett, Co- Counsel - Hon. Marco Tulio Mendez
"No plea was taken because the crown intends to bring this matter as an indictable matter."

Jules Vasquez
"Your suggestion would seem to be that aggravated assault suggests more than a touch - that the allegation is that fondling was involved."

Andrew Bennett, Co- Counsel - Hon. Marco Tulio Mendez
"The law states that if there is anything done indecent toward a child, it would be treated as aggravated assault and so it has a separate provision under the criminal code. So, yes, that may be, we don't know what the prosecution case is, but that may be some of the elements that they intend to bring. As it is, Dr. Mendez is an innocent person. He is to be treated as an innocent person and so what we intend to do is to put forward a formidable defense and that is what you will hear in court. Our client will speak to the media. I believe he will make a statement, so as it is, it is up to him and we will hear from him in the near future."

We are still awaiting word on if and when that statement will be forthcoming.

And while Tulio Mendez become the first member of the House to be charged for child molestation - he is not the first member of his family to face such charges. In April of 2013, his brother Cesar Mendez, a Beqnue Viejo pharmacist pleaded guilty to aggravated assault of an indecent nature and was fined five hundred dollars. He was accused of fondling a 12 year old girl.

That case was dealt with at the Magistrate's court level - but this one is an indictable offence so that means it is bound for the Supreme Court where a jury would decide his fate. We say "would" because many cases fall on technicalities at the lower court before they reach the Supreme Court.

Tulio Mendez's dash from the media today - can only draw a comparison with the UDP's Elvin Penner, who in March of 2014, became the first elected area representative to be criminally charged for official wrongdoing during the tenure of his own Government. On all appearances at court, Penner avoided the media and had his supporters fight us off - the same thing that Mendez's crowd tried with us today. And while their courtroom exit strategy is the same, the circumstances are very different: Penner was accused of official wrongdoing; Tulio Mendez faces very grievous allegations of inappropriate sexual behavior towards children.

PUP Suspends Hon. Mendez, Wishes Him Well

And so, what does this mean for him as a doctor and a politician? He practices as a neurologist and a pediatrician - but will his medical license be suspended? Well that is a decision for the Belize Medical Council - headed by Dr. George Goff who we could not reach for comment.

As a politician, he remains the area representative for Orange Walk East - and only he can choose to resign this seat. If a member of the House is criminally charged he is not required to vacate his seat. In fact, if he is convicted - the sentence must exceed 12 months to force a member to vacate his seat. So, unless he resigns - and he is not expected to - he will continue to collect his pay as a member of the House of Representatives, and will continue to get his community vote of seven thousand dollars a month.

But today the PUP officially put distance between itself and Dr. Mendez. The party sent out a statement saying quote, "the Party Leader….has with immediate effect removed Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez from his position as Chairman of the Northern Caucus and has suspended him indefinitely from all other Party related duties, responsibilities, and activities."

The release adds, "our thoughts and prayers are with the alleged victim(s), and with our colleague and friend Dr. Mendez and his family…"

We note that in November of last year, the 51 year old Tulio Mendez announced that he would not be seeking another term due to medical issues.

Channel 7

#500755 - 02/06/15 04:08 AM Re: Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez about to be charged in court [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Hon. Marco Tulio Could Face Serious Time

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - we've reported plentifully on the charges and allegations against him. On Tuesday he appeared in Orange Walk Magistrate's Court where he was formally arraigned on six counts of aggravated assault of an indecent nature. So what's the maximum time in prison that he could face? Well, the law says, a person convicted of such an offence under summary jurisdiction is, quote "Liable to a fine of not less than $3000.00 dollars or to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 12 months." But under indictment, that goes up to three years in prison - and that is 3 years per charge, and he faces six charges. So, were he to be convicted on all counts, the maximum would be 18 years in prison.

Dr. Mendez hasn't told us anything, but his party leader Francis Fonseca says Tulio Mendez will vigorously fight the charges.

And so that means he likely won't step down from his seat in the House of Representatives, and its clear his party won't urge him to resign. A member of the house is only forced to vacate his seat is he is convicted and sentenced to prison for more than a year, even if it is a suspended sentence.

As we showed you last night, 5 members of the house have been charged criminally in the last 8 years with various offences and none were convicted.

Channel 7

PUP’s Hon. Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez charged

The Opposition People’s United Party (PUP) Orange Walk East area representative, the Hon. Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez, became part of an unprecedented moment in the parliamentary history of Belize when he became the first sitting area representative to be formally charged with sex-related offences.

Following weeks of rumor and speculation surrounding what was going to happen to Dr. Mendez, who had announced late last year that he would not be seeking re-election as the PUP standard bearer tasked with winning the House of Representatives seat he currently holds, Orange Walk police charged him with six counts of aggravated assault of an indecent nature.

And yesterday, Tuesday, Dr. Mendez, accompanied by two attorneys, Dickie Bradley and Andrew Bennett, walked into the Orange Walk Police Station – which was used because the Northern Session of the Supreme Court was ongoing in the courtroom – and he was arraigned before the Orange Walk Magistrate Merlene Moody on the six charges.

Although the charges he faces are normally tried summarily, no plea was taken from Dr. Mendez, because his case will be tried on indictment in the Northern Session of the Supreme Court. The reason the state is pursuing the indictment of Dr. Mendez is that some of the allegations against him are over five years old, and as such, they have exceeded the statutory period when they could have been heard in a court of summary jurisdiction.

The state is alleging that Dr. Mendez, who is a pediatrician and neurologist, committed the offenses within the period 2005-2011, when he inappropriately touched two girls. The six charges are broken down into four counts in relation to one girl, and two in connection with the other.

At the time when the offences were alleged to have occurred, one of the girls was 10 years old, and the other was younger.

Dr. Mendez was released after posting a $5,000 bail and his case was adjourned to April 13, 2015.

A PUP official has described the charges as “political mischief” on the part of the UDP government of Prime Minister Dean Barrow, whose administration could not bring charges against Elvin Penner for allegedly violating our immigration laws.

Amandala has learned, however, that Dr. Mendez and his family, prior to being in the public spotlight, were undergoing professional counseling.

The PUP did not wait too long to make a statement after it learned that Dr. Mendez would be arraigned on the charges; as soon as it became official that he would be charged criminally, the Party issued a press release distancing itself from Dr. Mendez, who was removed as Chairman of the Northern Caucus “with immediate effect.”.

The PUP release said: “On the basis of this development, the Party Leader, in accordance with the power vested in him by the National Executive, has with immediate effect removed Hon. Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez from his position as Chairman of the Northern Caucus and has suspended him indefinitely from all other Party-related duties, responsibilities, and activities.”

After pointing out that their man in Orange Walk East is now Josue Carballo, the PUP ended their release saying, “As a Party, our thoughts and prayers are with the alleged victim(s), and with our colleague and friend, Dr. Mendez and his family.”

Although conviction of a charge of aggravated assault carries a maximum prison sentence of three years, Dr. Mendez is not required, under the Constitution of Belize, to resign from his seat in the House of Representatives.

A member of the House has to be convicted of a crime and be sentenced to a minimum of 12 months in prison before he has to give up his House seat.


#500973 - 02/12/15 03:51 AM Re: Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez about to be charged in court [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

PM Says PUP Position On Hon. Marco Tulio “Outrageous”

The Prime Minister also spoke out on the case of Area Representative for Orange Walk East Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez. As has been widely reported, he has been accused of child molestation, and was charged for six counts of aggravated assault of an indecent nature. The PUP has suspended him from all party functions, but today the PM said it’s not enough for what he calls an outrage:

Hon. Dean Barrow - Prime Minister

"It's outrageous and I feel that legal proceedings aside, he and his party should be called to account in an unambiguous fashion over what has happened and I don't see it taking place."

Jules Vasquez

"You think he should resign as a member of the house?"

Hon. Dean Barrow


Jules Vasquez

"Would you think the same of Elvin Penner?"

Hon. Dean Barrow

"He should resign too, shouldn't he? Nobody can force them to resign but since that is the case, then the parties have to do more than engage in the kind of tokenism that we've seen from the leader of the opposition. I am absolutely astonished over the fact that, people generally, don't seem to have focused on the clear difference between the way the UDP handled the situation with Penner and the way the PUP is handling the situation with Marco Tulio Mendez. We in effect, constructively expelled Penner. I see the leader of the opposition trying to tip toe through the tulips. There's nothing forth right at all about his response to the issue."

Later on, we’ll have a little more from the Prime Minister – as we ask him about a meting he held yesterday with the NTUCB. They have been boycotting Social Security’s Board of Directors Meetings in protest of government’s position that CWU Secretary General Floyd Neal cannot serve on the board. The PM will tell us about the compromise he’s trying to work out with the unions.

Channel 7

#507066 - 09/01/15 05:51 AM Re: Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez about to be charged in court [Re: Marty]
Marty Offline

Hon. Marco Tulio – Charges Upgraded, Accusation Very Serious

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez… that’s a name you haven’t heard in the news for almost 5 months now. Well, the PUP Area Representative for Orange Walk East – who is accused of child molestation, is back in the news tonight after he returned to the Orange Magistrate’s Court today. He was expecting a routine adjournment, where the police prosecutor normally asks the Magistrate for an adjournment while the investigators gather their evidence for disclosure. But he and his attorney were blind-sided at the preliminary inquiry when the prosecution asked the court to withdraw the 6 counts of aggravated assault of an incident nature against Mendez, and then… they requested for him to be arraigned on 3 counts of carnal knowledge – a far more serious offence.

Now, Dr. Mendez has maintained his innocence ever since these allegations emerged against him. Police say that the two female children accused him of touching them inappropriately, but now, police are saying that he did more than that. Investigators are now saying that there is evidence that he had sex with these minors.

On the spectrum sexual offences, carnal knowledge is one of the more serious crimes, and while he may have had a defence that the girls misjudged an innocent touch for sexual intent, that’s no longer available to him. According to police, there is no doubt, based on the reports, that he allegedly had sexual relations with these children.

Today, our colleagues from CTV3 News spoke with Mendez and his attorney about the implications of his impending criminal prosecution in a trial which surely has to go to the Supreme Court to run its course. Here’s what they had to say coming out of court today:

Andrew Bennett - Attorney for Marco Tulio Mendez

"We were to return for preliminary inquiry into this matter. We learnt this morning that additional charges were preferred against Dr. Mendez; which is the charge of carnal knowledge. At this point, he's still before the court and there is still a preliminary inquiry to held. And so we are return on the 27th of October in relation to the entire charges."


"So that's additional charges on your client. How does that affect your case?"

Andrew Bennett - Attorney for Marco Tulio Mendez

"Well it just means that we have another charge to really traverse through the courts."

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - Charged with Carnal Knowledge

"I've never been going through this constantly right now. They still haven't reached what optimum charges they are going to lay on me; and I'm surprised of it. Of course as I have told you, I am going to prove my innocence in the courts of law."


"Sir your political career, no matter what all good you've done; may be irreparably damaged. Do you concede to that?"

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - Charged with Carnal Knowledge

"Well that is not something to discuss right now. What is important is that I defend myself; my innocence in the court of law. That is what is important."


"The matter is in court of public opinion too sir."

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - Charged with Carnal Knowledge

"I mean it is in the court of law where I am going to defend myself; my innocence, that is where I am going to defend myself."


"Were you surprised that this additional charges thrown at you?"

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - Charged with Carnal Knowledge

"I was totally surprised. Totally surprised."


"How has these allegations affected your life personally and professionally during the last few months?"

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - Charged with Carnal Knowledge

"It has been terrible; but I have been able to cope and of course I have to just be sure that it is there that I am going to prove myself and that this will be over. This will be over."


"Sir with these additional charges, I have to ask you sir."

Dr. Marco Tulio Mendez - Charged with Carnal Knowledge

"Gracias." Walks away.....

We spoke with Mendez’s attorney, Andrew Bennett, via phone today and he told us that after the Magistrate read Mendez the new criminal charges, the police prosecutor tried to convince the court to revoke his bail based on the seriousness of the charges.

Bennett told us that he had to make submissions to the Magistrate why that shouldn’t be the course of actions to be taken, and after consideration, the Magistrate decided that he should remain on bail. He returns to court on October 27.

Mendez is a sitting area representative and remains a member of the House of Representatives. He will not run for office again in Orange Walk East – and has been replaced by a new candidate.

Channel 7


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