On 10 September 2016, Prime Minister Barrow was reported to have signalled that the Government would appeal the Chief Justice’s decision regarding the constitutionality of Section 53 of the Criminal Code, in so far as it extends or expands the definition of sex in the Constitution to include sexual orientation [R1.5].
On 17 August 2016, the Prime Minister Dean Barrow and Attorney General Vanessa Retreage reportedly announced the Government will not appeal a landmark court ruling that found the country’s sodomy law unconstitutional [R1.4].
On 10 August 2016, Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin issued his decision in the case against Section 53 of Belize’s Criminal Code, ruling that the country’s colonial-era sodomy law is unconstitutional [C2.5], [R2.4].
Consensual sex between same-sex couples was unlawful [R1.3].
Criminal Code [CAP. 101]. Part II Particular Crimes.
Title VII Criminal Force to the Person [L1.2]
1. Rape and Like Crimes
Unnatural Crime Section 53
“Every person who has carnal intercourse against the order of nature with any person or animal shall be liable to imprisonment for ten years”.
Aggravated assault Section 45
“Every person who commits an unlawful assault of any of the following kinds, namely-
(a) assault upon a person acting as a judicial officer or as a peace officer; or
(b) assault upon a minister of religion acting in the execution of the duties of his office; or
(c) assault upon a person in any court of justice, or assault upon a person in order to prevent him from doing, or on account of his doing or having done, anything as a party, agent, counsel, or witness, in any judicial proceeding; or
(d) assault with a purpose to commit, or in committing or attempting to commit, any other crime; or
(e) assault with any deadly or dangerous instrument or means; or
(f) indecent assault on any person, whether male or female; or
(g) assault upon any male child or any female of such a nature that it cannot in the opinion of the court be adequately punished under section 44, shall be guilty of an aggravated assault and, on conviction thereof, be liable to imprisonment for two years: Provided that in respect of an indecent assault upon a female or an aggravated assault upon any male child or any female, a person convicted under this section shall be liable to imprisonment for three years instead of two years.”
On 03 October 2013, with a decision pending in the case against the Unnatural Crime Section 53 of Belize’s criminal code being brought by Caleb Orozco [C2.3], [R2.2], the government is reportedly preparing to amend the law putting male anal or oral rape on a par with female rape if the gay part of the penal code is axed [R1.1].