Court delays sentencing of Estella Gonzalez

Last week 64 year old naturalized Belizean from Honduras, Estella Gonzalez, was found guilty by a jury of trafficking in persons. She brought a 15 year old to work in Belize in her George Price Highway bar, not in her field of cosmetology, but in sexually servicing men at the bar for a pittance. Today Gonzalez pleaded for leniency, explaining that she didn’t know that she was in a problem for her actions. She mentioned that she no longer runs the bar in question and that her health is poor and would get worse if she was sent to jail.   In addition to the statements from the teenager who is now an adult, Justice Adolph Lucas must review the considered opinions of physicians Dr. Fernando Cuellar and Dr. Javier Novelo on Gonzalez’s medical history. Sentencing was deferred to Tuesday, February 23. Dr. Cuellar noted that Gonzalez suffers from diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol, heart, eye and kidney diseases and a urinary tract infection, all of which require constant medication and monitoring. Will she get that in prison? The prison’s doctor, Javier Novelo, does not believe so, having just treated her for an anxiety attack this week due to the stress of her incarceration and sentencing today. He concluded that if Estella should go into a crisis at the prison, the Kolbe Foundation does not have the adequate facility to care for her. Kolbe does not have a facility to treat persons for heart attacks or stroke and in her case, her hypertension and diabetes can trigger a heart attack and strokevlcsnap-2016-02-19-09h59m32s079

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