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#237370 - 05/08/07 07:41 AM Robbery at Xunantunich
Marty Offline
from BTIA security consultant

Well, it looks like our luck has finally run out! After almost one full year of no major tourism crimes, I am sad to inform everyone that there were two armed robberies at the Xunantunich Maya Site this morning (May 7). Between 9:00am and 9:30am, a tour group of four guests from Chaa Creek and another group of four independent travelers staying in Hopkins were robbed at gunpoint while touring Xunantunich. Luckily there were no injuries, just loss of money and valuables. There were at least four bandits who were all young Spanish males who spoke only in Spanish and all wore masks. There were possibly others involved because one of the bandits was seen talking on a hand held radio to someone. Probably, a lookout. They were armed with shotguns and machetes. The Hopkins group was assaulted first by all four of the bandits while they were walking on a trail near El Castillo and then the Chaa Creek group was assaulted by two of the bandits as they descended the South side of El Castillo temple. After the assaults, the bandits held the victims for a short period of time and then fled into the bush in a westerly direction toward Guatemala.

The Benque Viejo police and BDF arrived on the scene shortly after they were notified. Statements were taken from all victims and witnesses and an investigation was initiated. I cannot confirm if there were police or BDF patrols on the site at the time of the incident but I was informed by a park employee on the scene that there was not.

I would like to advise everyone to take precautions when touring any sites or attractions in the immediate area of the Guatemalan border. While it is too early to speculate that this might be a repeat performance by an organized group as we experienced in 2006, it is still better to work on the side of caution until we have more information. Check your communications equipment and track your tour groups closely. This was a bold attack in broad open daylight in the middle of Xunantunich, so please be careful! Also, please remember to report any criminal or suspicious activity to the police immediately and to BTIA.

Please feel free to contact me directly, if I may be of assistance in any way.

Respectfully,

Mike Green
BTIA Security Consultant

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#237379 - 05/08/07 02:58 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: Marty]
LJ Offline
Thank you for posting this Marty.It is a reminder that you can not take safety for granted.When my family went to Carocol,scene of last years crime problems,we were glad to see the Belize Defense Force with very big guns,it made us feel very safe.The border is very hard to seal (impossible).I am happy that there were no injurys but a robbery like this leaves the victims feeling helpless.

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#237392 - 05/08/07 04:51 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: LJ]
sweetjane Offline
frown we are gonna be at caracol and xunantunich in 2 weeks. i am saddened to hear its happening again.

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#237398 - 05/08/07 05:07 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: sweetjane]
Sir Isaac Newton Offline
Don't worry SJ, the force is with us!
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Check out my site: www.ambergriscayerealestate.net

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#237401 - 05/08/07 05:13 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: Sir Isaac Newton]
sweetjane Offline
i know, my friend. no worries. cool

i just hate to see a really cool area that i love to recommend to folks tarnished with this crap.

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#237449 - 05/09/07 02:45 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: sweetjane]
Barbara K Offline
don't we all....:-(
_________________________
www.barbsbelize.com

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#239302 - 05/30/07 06:18 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: Barbara K]
sweetjane Offline
just went last week, and all there is good. we saw police and/or soldiers at all tourist areas. we felt very safe, and had no problems at all.

GO TO CAYO!!!

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#239342 - 05/30/07 08:08 PM Re: Robbery at Xunantunich [Re: sweetjane]
Nancy1340 Offline
Thanks SJ, that is good to know.
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