#494764 - 08/19/14 06:30 AM
Today's Belize News: August 19, 2014
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Specials and Events
Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV 3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials
The San Pedro Sun
Today I take the time out to introduce you to, another stinky little fruit, the craboo! Craboos are small fruits, in the “Bahamian Cherry” family and can be found in Central and South American countries like Belize, Mexico, Peru and Brazil and the Eastern Caribbean. There are many variations of craboo, including green, red, and yellow- all with slight variations in taste. The craboo fruits start off as bright yellow/orange/red blossoms on the craboo tree, and slowly transition into little round green fruits, at this point they are very tart in taste, but eventually grow to be very sweet. As they ripen they turn, either yellow, reddish-brown or retain their green hue, and of course have a distinct smell. When mature enough, they fall to the ground. But not for long! Craboos are collected and enjoyed by many…including the birds.
Minister of Health presents budget for 24-hr Polyclinic services
The Government of Belize has approved the extension of services at The Dr. Otto Rodriguez San Pedro Polyclinic II. On Thursday August 14th a host of health care authorities gathered at the clinic to discuss the recently approved government budget for the islands’ 24-hour medical facility. A time frame of two months has been declared for the services to kick-in. Extended service hours at the island’s public health care facility is an issue that islanders have been lobbying for relentlessly. In a recent interview with The San Pedro Sun Newspaper (Issue #31, Volume 24), Area Representative and Minister of Tourism, Culture and Civil Aviation Honorable Manuel Heredia Jr. went on record to say that the Government of Belize “[has] not stopped working, and presently the Ministry of Health has already completed the budget,[as to] how much it will cost, which hopefully will be presented to Cabinet on Tuesday (July 29th). The Prime Minister, in principle, has committed [and] he will approve this budget so that we will have our 24-hour services in the next, I say, two to three months, I believe.”
Summer Music Camp Inspires Young Island Artists
Music teacher Carlos Perrote just concluded his second annual Summer Music Camp after having held a very successful one for the first time last year.The musical camp offers mostly young students the opportunity to learn a variety of instruments and allows them to showcase their talent at a musical presentation at the end of the camp.
This presentation was held last week Friday, August 15, 2014 at the R. Angel Nuñez Auditorium with parents and family enjoying a fantastic display of talent from each participating student. It was impressive to see how all the students come to master a number of instruments in such a short period of time. Some of the students have never touched a musical instrument and are impressing with their newly learned musical skills.
Belizean Fish Roe Hash
If you were born in San Pedro, visited the island, or have lived here for some time and you have not yet eaten fish egg also called roe, it is just about time to enjoy this delicacy. Not only will you enjoy it but you will also be able to say that you are a real Sanpedrano. There are several ways to enjoy fish egg- fried or baked, but in this island dish recipe, you will get to prepare it like a hash.
Miss San Pedro Contestants Enjoying Fun Activities Leading to Pageant Night
Six beautiful contestants are vying for the prestigious title of Miss San Pedro 2014. Michelle Estrella Nuñez, Ileny Linell Aguilar, Daphney Therese Panti, Janelli Felcita Ack, Doris Celine Soriano and Maria Elma Gonzalez will be taking center stage on Saturday, August 30, 2014. These lovely girls have been rehearsing arduously but have also been enjoying fun outings on the island and neighboring city Chetumal, Mexico.
The official sashing ceremony for the delegates of the Miss San Pedro Pageant was held at Rum & Bean on a beautiful moonlit evening on Sunday, August 10, 2014. After that the girls have been enjoying fun activities including movie nights at Paradise Theater, dinner at the finest restaurants on the island including Rojo Lounge where they were hosted to a fun filled night with host Findley Halliday.
Misc Belizean Sources
What is a “palapa’?
We come across this question, all the time in Belize, from first time visitors to the Jewel. Tropical environments in Belize use a sustainable roofing technique to keep houses cool and shelter from rain called a Palapa, in English this is called a thatched roof. Palapas are one of the most talked about construction techniques by visitors to Belize, as it is a beautiful and practical roofing option used in this area. If you have visited Belize, you have probably stayed at one time or another in one of these roof covered resorts or villas. The typical questions about the palapas are: do the roofs leak? How does the grass or palm leaves actually stay on the roof? What happens when there are strong winds or hurricanes?
“Palaperos”, men who construct these amazing roof structures, are artists. Watching them build a palapa roof, a thatched roof is truly an experience in and of itself. They are fast, have a rhythm to their work and in a day or two, depending on the size of the roof, the roof is done! In Belize, this is a skill that thank goodness is still being used in new construction.
Minister Hulse Visit to Taiwan
At the invitation of the Government of the Republic of China (Taiwan), Hon. Sen. Godwin Hulse, Minister of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development, National Emergency Management and Immigration and Nationality, has concluded a five day visit to Taiwan from August 11th, to 15th, 2014.
Action Taken by Ministry of Health Based on Preliminary Audit Reports
The Ministry of Health would like to inform the public that the audit of accounts initiated last year by the Ministry in all health regions continues with the help of the Auditor General’s office. As a consequence, we have recently been presented with irregularities that have been identified in preliminary reports for the Primary Care Provider clinics in Dangriga and Punta Gorda. Based on that report, the Administrators of both clinics have been placed on immediate suspension as a precautionary measure pending the completion of the investigations. Administrative arrangements have been put in place to ensure that services are not affected.
Disgraced Deputy In Fatal Traffic Accident
Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura is disgraced tonight. The #2 police officer has been served with a notice of intended prosecution for a long list of charges for his role in a traffic fatality - in which, it is being alleged, he was driving under the influence.
On Saturday morning at about 5:30, Segura was driving a police issued Nissan Pathfinder to his home in Benque Viejo when he crashed head on into a taxi which was heading to San Ignacio. It happened just outside Succotz village and the female market vendor who was in the passenger seat died on impact, while the driver suffered multiple injuries. His condition has been upgraded from critical to stable - but as you'll hear from his family later on, he's far from being out of the woods.
Family Of Injured Taximan Blames Segura
But, the actions of the senior command are probably no consolation to the families, first, of the deceased market vendor, and, second, the injured cab driver. Tonight, one family is preparing to bury a mother of five, Yolanda Consuelo Valencia, while the other is tending to 28 year old Yanie Evan Cu, who was transferred to the KHMH because of the seriousness of his injuries.
Today, Cu's family spoke to Monica Bodden outside the KHMH and they told her that they blame Segura for their son's condition:..
Azucena Cu- Mother of Yanie Evan Cu
"He is not good, he is injured right now. Today the doctor told me that he has to be operated on today on his hand."
"What are his injuries?"
Pedro Cu - Father of Ivan Cu
"His hand are his hip are broken, his foot is injured."
Weekend City Shootings Not Fatal
There were two shootings in the city on Friday night - which left three men injured, but, luckily none of the injuries are life threatening.
At around 11:30, 31 year old Charles Hinds and 41 year old Eldon Solomon were walking on Elston Kerr Street in the Collet Area when they were approached from behind by three men on foot, one of whom fired several shots at them. The attackers then ran off toward Central American Boulevard where a car was waiting for them. Hinds narrowly escaped a fatal injury, as gunshots grazed the top of his head. He has been treated and released from the hospital. And 41-year-old Eldon Edward Solomon was shot to the back - and he was expected to be released from the hospital this afternoon. Precinct two police were swift to make an arrest:..
Father Of 7 Killed In Western Stabbing
A man was killed on Unitedville Village on in the wee hours of Saturday morning. He is 34 year old father of 7 Victor Vargas, known as Nico. According to reports, at around 3:00 am, Vargas was in a fight with a younger man, a 19 year old. The teenager allegedly stabbed him in the throat. Vargas ran trying to get help, but no one opened for him, and he collapsed unto the street dead. Today his family told us it is a bitter end to a life full of conflict:..
Eddie de la Rosa, Cousin of deceased
"A fight was happing right here, he lives on the other lane and was coming home. He went to a party and was intoxicated. He came to check on the fight that was happening here, but instead of parting the fight, they just stab the man. They said that the guy that killed him was with him earlier, but apparently he stayed at the bar by the entrance and the guy came and socialize with different crowd and got into an argument."
Customs Officer Charged
Today in Orange Walk - an unusual case went to court. A customs officer was charged for manslaughter for a case that occurred 5 years ago. That's June of 2009, when 19 year old Onorio Oba of San Victor village in the Orange Walk District WAS SHOT and killed. Oba was shot when Customs Officers came under attack from villagers and opened fire to protect themselves. The dispute was over a cargo of contraband which customs had seized.
Well, 5 years later police say they have new evidence, which enabled them to charge customs officer Charles Flores. Flores was assigned to river patrols at the time and he participated in the initial seizure. This afternoon, he was taken to Orange Walk Magistrate's Court where he was arraigned on a charge of manslaughter. He was released and bail and ordered to return to court on fifth November.
And while police claim to have new evidence pointing to Flores as the Officer with the gun, 7News has learned that at least two BDF soldiers who were on patrol with him have attested that he was in the river with them when the shooting happened in the village.
Jamaican Man Charged For Rubio Murder Claims Demon Possession
On Friday we told you all about the murder of 38 year old Oscar Richard Rubio. He is the Belize City resident who was beaten on July 30th, left in intensive care with a major head injury, and went un-noticed by police until he died from that injury last week Wednesday August 13th.
Well, while police might have been late to catch up on the crime, they were relatively quick to make an arrest. Investigators have arrested and charged 32-year-old Jamaican Mark Dallas as the person who inflicted those fatal injuries.
This afternoon he was arraigned before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. He was remanded until October 2, 2014.
Sr. Supt. Broaster's Burglar Gets 7 Years
On Friday, we told you how Senior Superintendent, Edward Broaster had caught the thief who broke into his house.
Well, today, that man, 39 year old Richard Codd went to court where he was charged for burglary. He wasted no time and pleaded guilty to the single charge. Codd told magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart that he didn't want to waste the court's time, and that Broaster had already gotten back his items and that he, Codd, had fixed back his broken window. For the offense of burglary, Codd was sentence to the minimum jail term of 7 years. In his mitigation plea, he told the magistrate that he is sick and someone has put him under an obeah spell.
Codd is no stranger to the police or the court. He has a number of convictions, five of them are for crimes of dishonesty going back to 2003.
More Bad Business In Ministry of Health
Another trough of corruption has been unearthed at the Ministry of Health and two senior administrators are suspended because of it.
For months, we've been alluding to mismanagement of funds in the south - and today - the Ministry of Health announced that Administrators of the Dangriga and Punta Gorda Primary Care Provider clinics have been suspended. They are Harry Sabal for Dangriga and Kayla Hoare for Punta Gorda. The Ministry's press release says that irregularities have been identified in preliminary reports from the Auditor General for those clinics. They have been placed on immediate suspension as a precautionary measure.
Teen Alleges Abuse At Police/BDF Camp
Last week we told you about the camp that police are offering to Belize City families who have troubled teenagers in their house. It's a boot camp run by the BDF at Camp Belizario in Cayo. It can last for four to six weeks depending on whether the students are enrolled in school.
But, one Belize City family today reached out to us to say one week was to long. Their 16 year old son has come back with a story of wretched and systematic abuse that's, honestly, hard to believe until you hear them out. We spoke to mother, son, and a neighbor today to hear their allegation of constant beatings at the hand of police:..
Voice of: Georgia, Mother
"I called him and he said to please come for me because they beat me. I ask what happen and so he was crying over the phone and he said to please come for me because they beat me, they got me in mud and water and if they move the GSU beats them."
A Grave Mix Up
When a loved one dies, there is an extended process of grieving that follows. Visiting the grave site is an important part of that but the Gomez family's grief and sadness turned into rage when they visited their loved one's grave in Lord's Bank on Friday. They realized another grave was built and attached to their relative's grave. Keisha King, the daughter of the deceased, Marie Gomez, expressed her anger at the situation and stated emphatically that she and her family want the offending grave removed.
Keisha King, Daughter of Deceased
"Actually Friday evening when I went up there to take flowers to the grave I was shocked to see that situation; two grave combined as one grave. That situation is so disturbing. We have no connection and that's like a complete stranger to us. We have no idea."
Police Brass Reflect On Segura's Vile Viral Video
As we've shown you in the top of our segment, Deputy Commissioner Segura is on suspension from duties as the #2 Police officer after he was involved in an accident which killed a 54 year-old woman, and put her taxi driver, who is also one of her family members, in the hospital. There is the lingering allegation that he was driving under the influence of alcohol when it happened.
We've confirmed with Assistant Superintendent Daniel Arzu, the Officer Commanding Benque Police, who is also in charge of the investigation, that the forensic testing of the blood samples taken from both Deputy Commissioner Miguel Segura and Yanie Cu are in.
When we asked if he could disclose them to us, Arzu told us that he had to seek instruction from the Commissioner of Police if he had permission to release them to the press. He then advised us to call Commissioner Whylie directly. When we did call the commissioner, we couldn't get him on the phone.
COMPOL Encourages Public To Hit Record
So, a critical part of story was told by the cellphone footage recorded shortly after the incident. But, many times, there are moments captured like this on video, which never make it out in the public because officers often confiscate the civilian's recording devices and delete files. Sometimes, they try to block members of the press from doing their jobs by threatening them with deletion of their images and videos.
The different media houses have all encountered something this once or twice over the years, and today, when Commissioner Whylie was asked give the department's position the recording of police officers doing their duties. He told us that he doesn't have a problem with civilans or photojournalists recording these materials, as long as they are respecting the cordoned area of the scenes:
22 Days Later Dwayne Still Missing
The mother of 24 year old Dwayne Young is desperate for answers about her son Dwayne Young who has been missing for 22 days.
He went missing on July 28th after a domestic dispute and has not been seen since. Today she stopped by our studio for a second time to express her devastation and to make her plea to the public.
Angelica Morrison, Mother
"I want to say to the public that anyone who sees my son to call me or contact my daughter or the police because he is missing and I want to find him and I want him to come home safe. Anybody who sees him, my number is 621-0176 and my daughter's is 60 -2221. I want my son come home and he was working when this happened to him. I am tired of not sleeping, I can't even eat. Every day I have to get up to try to look for him, all in the bushes looking for my son and asking people and like no one is not telling me anything about my son. I want the police to look into it to find him because it is going for a month now and I want to find him to come home."
Is There An App for The Future?
Last week we told you about Tiffany Simpson's Mobile App Development course package entitled "Tech it Easy" which is designed to teach students how to create their own mobile applications. Well, the PUC has propelled this vision to a larger scale. The PUC is hosting a week long workshop to train youths in Mobile application development. The workshop is being held under the theme "Inspiring Solutions for Global Challenges through Innovation and Creativity". The coordinators of the workshop discussed the importance of such a workshop and the holistic approach to technology in transforming not just Belize but...the world!! Courtney Weatherburne reports:...
The workshop began today and will conclude on Friday with presentations from the participants.
Home Invasion Leads To Murder in Hopkins
We've confirmed that during the course of our newscast, there was a murder which happened in Hopkins Village, in the Stann Creek District.
Information is sketchy at this time but we've been told that a teacher and his wife were the victims of a home invasion, and in the course of the crime, the woman was killed. The teacher is currently receiving medical treatment, and police currently processing the scene.
We'll have more on this in tomorrow's newscast.
Belizean Woman Shot and Killed In Vegas
Police from the Las Vegas Metro Police Department are searching for 27 year-old Carim Cruz, a man living in the US, after he shot and killed a Belizean American in that California City.
News reports from out of Las Vegas say that early on Saturday morning, Diana Serrano and her cousin, Rasheda Lopez was at Geisha House Restaurant at around 2:30 when a man opened fire on the crowded business place, after he got into an argument and a with one of the victims, and several patrons of the restaurant. Diana Serrano was fatality shot, and died on the scene, while Rasheda Lopez was rushed to the University Medical Center.
GSU Recounts Raid
On Friday we told you how police raided the Kolbe Prison in Hattieville and came up with cell phones, with and without SIM cards in the cells of what the GSU says are key gang members. Other items found at the Kolbe Foundation are drugs, stingers and borers ("boras").
Back in the City - and also on Friday, the GSU found 87.1 grams of cannabis in Cadle Alley. The drugs are believed to be for a well-known member of the Victoria Street Bloods Gang who peddles drugs within that area.
Hon. Hulse in Taiwan
Minister of Immigration, Godwin Hulse has returned from a 5 day visit to Taiwan. The purpose of the visit was to further strengthen relations between Belize and Taiwan. Hulse signed a Memorandum of Understanding between his Ministry of Immigration and the Ministry of Interior of Taiwan relating to human trafficking and Immigration issues. Senator Hulse returned to Belize on Friday.
Breaking News: Murder in Hopkins
News Five has managed to confirm that there was a murder moments ago in Hopkins. Details are sketchy at this point because officers have been dispatched to the scene, but [...]
Fatal Traffic Accident on Benque Road lands Deputy ComPol in hot seat
Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura has been placed on interdiction for his involvement in a fatal road traffic accident which occurred early Saturday morning. Police were called to mile [...]
National Security Ministry calls Press Briefing in the Aftermath of the Weekend Tragedy
There is a great deal of outrage tonight surrounding a fatal traffic accident near Succotz early Saturday morning. It involved a vehicle driven by Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura, [...]
Video of Accident Scene Goes Viral on Social Media
And on the heels of outrage at that video, there are allegations that Segura received special attention on the scene. Eyewitnesses told News Five today that Segura was taken from [...]
Devon Bailey Arraigned for Friday Night Shooting
Two men were shot at over the weekend and tonight one of the alleged shooters is behind bars on remand at the Belize Central Prison after he was denied bail [...]
Unitedville Man is Stabbed and Killed…
Cayo Police are tonight on a manhunt for the killer of a resident of Unitedville who was fatally stabbed early Saturday morning. It happened at around three a.m. at the [...]
…Woman Believes Her Son is Wanted for the Murder
Police have not officially released the name of the man wanted for Vargas’ murder, but one woman from Unitedville is convinced that her nineteen year old son is the suspect. [...]
GSU Operations in the West
Also in the west, the Gang Suppression Unit conducted an eight-hour operation targeting drug dealers and peddlers in the San Ignacio area. Around five-thirty a.m. on Saturday, the unit searched [...]
Jamaican Man Arraigned for Murder of Oscar Rubio
Thirty-eight year old Oscar Rubio was taken to the K.H.M.H. by the police after he was found drunk in the Belize Constitution Park in late July and two weeks later, [...]
Lord’s Bank Family Says Grave of Loved One Defiled
The desecration of a loved one’s grave by vandals or others who are intent on unlawfully occupying precious funereal estate is an injustice that is not limited to the Lord [...]
2 Administrators in the South Put on Suspension Following Health Audit
The public health system is once again under intense scrutiny, following the suspension of a pair of administrators from the Primary Care Provider Clinics in Dangriga and Punta Gorda, respectively. [...]
Youths Converge for the Mobile App Workshop and Competition 2014
“Inspiring Solutions to Global Challenges through Innovation and Creativity.” That’s the theme of a seminar being hosted by the Public Utilities Commission in which tech savvy youths are being trained [...]
CXC Results Are In
The preliminary results of the 2014 CXC Exams, sat in May and June, are in and, while the top scorers are yet to be named, a total of three thousand, [...]
Highlights of the First Belize Jazz and Culture Show
On Saturday, the first in a year-long series of Belize Jazz Fusion Culture Concerts was held at the Biltmore Best Western Hotel, where a host of performers and musicians entertained [...]
Sporting Highlights with James Adderley
Good evening I’m James Adderley and this is Sports Monday. We caught up with Saturday night semi-final showdown in Firms Division Basketball as BWSL and the Belize Bank/Airport faced [...]
#494765 - 08/19/14 06:31 AM
Re: Today's Belize News: August 19, 2014
More News: Scroll up from here
Czl Police Launch Operation Cleanup
As part of the Northern Regional initiative, the Orange Walk and the Corozal Police Departments conducted a joint operation yesterday in sight of the San Joaquin Fiesta scheduled to commence tonight. According to Officer Commanding the Corozal Police Formation, Andrew Ramirez, Operation Cleanup has but one aim.
Andrew Ramirez – OC Corozal
“Orange Walk Police was here yesterday and they did some searches for wanted persons and a few minor arrest nothing much to mention about right but the most important thing of it is that the community felt an increase of police presence and they realize it was a counter anticrime effort that we did just to ensure that people came out for the San Joaquin Fiesta, that they can have movements with the family and friends peaceful and that is the main objective of that but that is a regional initiative and I would like to take time to thank Superintendent Arnold, Officer In charge for Orange Walk who has sent a number of officers from Orange Walk to assist in the operation and the operation code name was operation Clean Up.”
NEMO Members Take Part In Workshop
A Damage Assessment and Needs Analysis workshop was held today at the Agriculture Department in Corozal. The workshop was attended by members of the community from both rural and urban areas. The objective was to arm participants with the right tools on how to respond in case of a natural Disaster. Among the participants was Willard Levy, Coordinator for the National Emergency Management Organization in Corozal.
Willard Levy – NEMO
“Well actually what we are doing is that we are having a workshop about Damage Assessment, it is called the DANA, which means the Damage Assessment Needs Analysis, this is one of the most key committees in NEMO’s structure that does the assessments of damages after any disaster and is most important because what reports are made from that is what assistance is given to people affected in terms of agriculture, housing and households and everything.”
One arrested in double shooting
Police have levied charges of attempted murder, grievous harm and use of deadly means of harm on 22 year old Devon Bailey, in connection with the shooting of 31 year old Charles Hinds, Jr., and 41 year old Eldon Solomon, around 11:35 p.m. on August 15, 2014. Police responded to information they received of shots being fired on Elston Kerr Street, Belize City. Charles Hinds was grazed by gunshots to the top of his head, while Eldon Solomon was hit in the right upper back. They were socializing on the side walk in front of a house on Elston Kerr Street, when they were approached from behind by three dark-skinned men, one of whom fired several shots at them causing the injuries to Mr Hinds and Mr Solomon. The three culprits then ran up Pelican Street Extension heading towards Central American Boulevard where they boarded a waiting car and escaped. Both victims are listed in a stable condition at the K.H.M.H.
Saturday morning shooting in Belize City
There was another incident reported over the weekend, where a man was shot at the corner of Pickstock Street and Lovely Lane, Belize City. According to reports, around 5:00 a.m. on Saturday morning, Shane Garcia, aka “The Dancer,” was traveling with two cousins in a black car which stopped in the area. A gunman emerged from another vehicle and shot at Shane Garcia, catching him twice in the shoulder and to the left side of the chest. Mr Garcia has been treated for his injuries and released from the hospital.
Two more Health Care Administrators suspended
In the heat of the case of Nasley Sommerville, whose Public Service Commission hearing for the embezzlement of hospital funds was postponed to September 9th, the Ministry of Health announced the immediate suspension of two more Health Care Administrators effective on Monday. According to the Ministry of Health, “the Audit of Accounts initiated last year by the Ministry in all health regions continues with the help of the Auditor General’s office. As a consequence, we have recently been presented with irregularities that have been identified in preliminary reports of the Primary Care Provider clinics in Dangriga and Punta Gorda.” As a result, the Administrators for the Primary Health Care clinics of Dangriga and Punta Gorda, Harry Sabal and Kaila Hoare respectively, have been suspended as a precautionary measure while investigations continue. According to the Ministry of Health, administrative arrangements have been put in place so as to ensure that services are not affected. The Ministry further stated that it takes these matters very seriously but at the same time ensures that the administrators in question are given time to respond to the reports.
Family of accident victims want justice
Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura is in serious trouble, placed on interdiction and potentially facing criminal charges, resulting from Saturday’s fatal traffic accident. But the victims of Saturday’s accident – the deceased 54 year old Yolanda Valencia, a mother of three, and 28 year old Yanie Cu, […]
Youth alleges brutal beatings at reform camp
Toward the end of last week, BDF Commander Brigadier General David Jones; Deputy Officer Commanding Eastern Division Senior Superintendent Edward Broaster and Minister of National Security John Saldivar sang the praises of a reform camp organized by the BDF at its base in Camp Belizario in the Cayo […]
Health Ministry suspends administrators in southern clinics
The Ministry of Health has announced the “immediate suspension” of administrators of primary care provider clinics in Dangriga and Punta Gorda Towns pending completion of investigations into allegations of irregularities in the accounts of both clinics. These come out of the preliminary audit reports commissioned by the Ministry […]
Home invasion in Hopkins: one dead, one injured
Residents of the quiet community of Hopkins, Stann Creek district are in shock tonight after a violent home invasion claimed the life of a woman and has left her husband badly injured. The late evening incident claimed the life of Josephine Augustine. Her husband Dudley Augustine was […]
Senior Belize Minister visits Taiwan
Senator Godwin Hulse, Minister of Labour, Local Government, Rural Development, National Emergency Management, Immigration and Nationality completed a five-day visit to the Republic of China (Taiwan) last week. During his overseas visit, Senator Hulse met with his Taiwanese counterpart Dr. Hao Feng-min, as well as other senior Taiwanese […]
Deputy ComPol served with Notice of Intended Prosecution
Police have issued a Notice of Intended Prosecution against Deputy Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura. This follows an early Saturday morning fatal traffic accident at mile 71 on the George Price Highway in the village of San Jose Succotz, Cayo district. Segura was driving a grey Nissan Pathfinder which […]
Sargasso Piling Up on Our Shores on One Beautiful Day In San Pedro + The Island’s Best Pizza
Sargassum, or the seaweed that is now quite plentiful in Belize, is all over the beach. And, while not all that attractive, it’s seriously fascinating stuff. There is a whole “sea” of it that is a home for all sorts of baby fish and sea creatures, it’s a spawning site…it’s basically a giant floating nursery.
And it’s HUGE (even bigger than the Pacific Ocean’s Trash Vortex!) and its movement is “managed” by currents and weather. (Read more facts here.)
And Rojo. Right next door is their UBER-EXCLUSIVE villa, Azul. And just this past week, they hosted one of the actors from BREAKING BAD. I’m asking if I can tell you who. The Scoop is the very soul of discretion.
Or this GORGEOUS pizza. Half sausage and vegetable with homemade red sauce and then half the “Alaska” pizza. Whole buttery garlic cloves, goat cheese, huge chunks of lobster, crust that is so delicious. YUM. The fresh green onion really makes it. Best pizza I’ve had in Belize.
Chaa Creek Spa Wins World Tourism Award
The Lodge at Chaa Creek has been recognised as “Belize’s Leading Spa Resort” at the recent World Tourism Awards, an event the Wall Street Journal called “The travel Industry’s equivalent to the Oscars.”
Speaking after the announcement at the awards ceremonies, held this year in Quito, Ecuador, Chaa Creek’s owners say the win is further proof of Belize’s “coming of age” as a premier tourism destination.
“We were thrilled and honoured to hear we’ve received the World Tourism Award. It reflects well on not only Chaa Creek, but the Belize eco-tourism industry as whole, which is really coming of age as far offering travellers a wide variety of exceptional products and services. Spas were a rarity in this part of the world when we established the Hill Top Spa, and now guests have come to expect these sorts of quality amenities, even in the midst of a pristine rainforest setting,” Ms Fleming said.
Belize Coalition of Service Providers (BCSP)
The Belize Coalition of Service Providers (BCSP) is a national umbrella body that brings together all service sector associations. It functions as a focal point to lobby, channel and address trade in services issues and services development issues which are critical for the sector to thrive in the competitive global environment. The Administrative & Accounting Office will be responsible for assuming the accounting and administrative functions for the BCSP Secretariat and providing administrative assistance to the BCSP’s Executive Director.
Merry go round!
By Abdulmajeed K. Nunez
Ring a ring a roses
A pocket full of poses
A tish-u, a tish-u we all fall down
Are we serious about juvenile reform?
Or are we playing merry-go-round?
Are we buying into Jim Crow-ism
And being tricked into creating more facilities for juvenile incarceration
The boot camp model has long faced extinction
Let’s stop playing games with our at risk population
We are seeing building construction at mile twenty-one
I hope that’s coming with a holistic curriculum
Unlike the customary imported one,
It has to be a homegrown one with monitoring and evaluation.
Power outage Stann Creek
Power interruption 8:00am to 1:00pm, Friday, August 22, Stann Creek District: Entire Hopkins Village. BEL to relocate high voltage lines on Hopkins Road and replace utility poles in Hopkins Village.
Mike Vestal – Child Predator in Belize
Each year, countless children around the world fall prey to sexual predators. These young victims are left with permanent psychological, physical, and emotional scars. When a recording of that sexual abuse is made or released onto the Internet, it lives on forever. It haunts the children depicted in it, who live daily with the knowledge that countless strangers use an image of their worst experiences for their own gratification.
I do not comprehend the fact that anyone can come to Belize and just do as they please. In these crazy times where children are being hunted, we cannot continue to let anyone just parade into Belize as they please. When Belizeans want to go out for vacation they have to pay hundreds for a visa, get a full background check and a lot more but people can just fly or drive into Belize; mostly from the US.
This is Michael Vestal, 37, Vallejo, Johnson Control technician that has been profiled not only on international TV but on a show specific to child predator (s), and he was allowed not only to come into Belize but work with children under the guise of Christianity. They have listed as now living in Antigua Guatemala, Sacatepequez
Shrimp and Sausage Jambalaya
This another option of meats besides chicken that you can use to create a delicious spicy Jambalaya. The Andouille sausage is the secret ingredient that makes this dish so mouthwatering.
See Why Your Next Dive Vacation Should Be In Belize
one of the smallest countries in Central America – packs a lot within its borders, from the hemisphere’s longest reef and the amazing Blue Hole, to whale sharks, atolls, Mayan ruins and jungle trekking.
Deciding where to stay in Belize is harder than it seems – your choices range from the quaint ambience of San Pedro on Ambergris Caye to the dive-only atolls to the nature-loving South.
The barrier reef off Ambergris Caye starts five miles north of the Mexican border and is so near shore that dive sites are only five minutes away. Experienced divers like to visit Hol Chan Cut: Strong tidal currents make it tricky to dive this site, but also supply food to filter feeders such as sea fans, sponges and gorgonians and to fish like grunts and mutton snappers. Divers stay close to the channel sides where irregularities in the walls blunt much of the current’s strength.
The August 17th, 2014 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE
This Week's Stories:
- Four Arrested For Parceling A Pound Of Weed:
Three men from Red Creek and a
fourth from Santa Elena were, this
Thursday afternoon, arrested and
charged for the possession of marijuana when a team of policemen
sneaked up on them from behind as
they were parceling the merchandise
under a coconut tree in the back of a
Acting upon information received, at around 2:30 pm this Thursday
afternoon, a team of policemen,
comprising elements from Special
Branch, Crimes Investigation Branch
and the Tourism Police Unit sneaked
up from behind, along a cement fence, unto a property located at #213 Red
Creek, on the eastern outskirts of
Santa Elena Town, where they
surprised four men assembled under
a coconut tree engaged in a suspicious activity with a camp fire burning
nearby. The men, all Belizean laborers, were
identified as Ricky Diego, 28 and
Glenford “Geese” Lewis, 50, both
residing on the property as well as
Shane Smith, 29, who lives nearby
also in Red Creek and Wayne
Miralda, 34, who told the police that
he lives further up the highway in Santa
- Espat Takes The Rap Fined and Confined:
Four persons from Santa Elena
were today arrested on a possession
of marijuana charge. The youngest of
the four pled guilty to the charge. He
was sent straight to jail on a five year sentence along with a ten thousand
It was shortly before 10 o’clock on
the morning of Friday, August 8,
2014, when a team of policemen,
armed with a warrant to search for drugs, descended upon the #148
George Price Avenue, Santa Elena
residence of Nelson “Quack”
Flores, 30, Belizean laborer.
Present with Flores on location at
the time of the search were three other
persons later identified as Belizeans Alma Reyes, 36; Jose Garcia, 26;
and Justin Espat, 19. Both Reyes
and Espat told the police that they
reside with Flores at the house while
Garcia informed that he lives nearby
on Coconut Street.
- Editorial: We See, We Hear And We Read:
When one travels across the
nation, there is no denying that
unprecedented development in the
nation’s infrastructure is happening
everywhere like never before.
The modernization of Belize City
is unquestionable, Mayor Darrell
Bradley, with assistance from Prime
Minister Dean Barrow and
Central Government are transforming
the city beyond imagination. In the
less than two and a half years since
Mayor Bradley was elected to Belize
City Hall, he and his team has done
more for the city than all previous
Amazingly, while the national
development is advancing full speed
ahead, it is doing so without any
increase in national taxes and undue
hardships to the thousands of public
officers, teachers, doctors, nurses,
policemen and soldiers paid by the
national purse. Much unlike what is
taking place in the region.
We see, we hear and we read
reports of massive retrenchments of
public officers in sister Caribbean
We see, we hear and we read of
moratoriums on new employment of
public officers in the region.
- Burglary, Burglary, Burglary:
San Ignacio police are this
week reporting three burglaries
with no arrest. Police are of the
opinion that a sneaky burglar is
in town. The general public is
therefore advised to guard against
becoming a victim of burglary.
In the first incident, Gerald
Armstrong, 48, reported to
police that between 6:00 am and
10:00 pm on Saturday, August 2,
his house, located on Eduardo
Juan Street in Santa Elena, was
burglarized. While several items
stolen amounted to less than a
hundred dollars, the fact remains
that someone invaded his privacy
and in the process disrespected
In the second incident, Wayne Bermudez, 50, year old Belizean
farmer of a San Ignacio Town
address reported to police that
his farm house, located behind
Eden Resort on the highway
leading to Benque Viejo Town,
was burglarized on Sunday,
- Belize Earns A Host Of Top 100 Readers Choice Awards:
The August 2014 “Scuba Diving”
magazine has outlined Belize as the
“Central American paradise” who
“earned a host of 2014 Top 100
Readers Choice Awards.”
Belize earned Readers Choice
Awards for the Caribbean and
Atlantic’s best overall destination, big
animals, wall diving, and underwater
Some of the highlights from the
three-page spread include mentions
of our barrier reef “bowing only to
Australia’s great one.” It also talks
about the wall dives that can be done
along the atolls, which “turn into an
underwater Lollapalooza.” Also
among the highlights was Gladden
Spit which placed in the top 5 list for
“best big animals in the
Caribbean and Atlantic region.”
Apart from our “big animals,” Belize was also recognized for its
“macro critters.” Belize, known for
some of the most authentic
experiences, was also pointed out as
a destination for tours from luxury
yachts, to explorations through the
jungle and to the archaeological sites.
- Marriage Reveals, Not Creates Problems:
BY: Rick Warren, Aug 3, 2014:
“In the end, people
appreciate honest criticism far
more than flattery.” (Proverbs
If you’re single and you’re
prolonging a relationship that you
know is going nowhere, don’t
continue it. “But I won’t have
anybody to take me out on
Friday night,” you say. A bad
marriage is a million times worse
than not going out on Friday
night! The longer you’re in a
relationship, the more difficult
it’s going to be to get out of it.
Proverbs 28:23 says, “In the
end, people appreciate honest
criticism far more than flattery”
Size that person up quickly,
particularly related to emotional
health. Don’t be afraid to ask
questions like, “Do you have
uncontrolled anger?” “Can
we talk about me?” or “Will
you pick up the tab?”
- Police Manhunt For Calderon Brothers Underway:
Police have detained two suspects
and are on the manhunt for two more
in connection with a Sunday night,
August 3, chopping incident in San
It was a few minutes to 10 o’clock
on Sunday night August 3 when the
police were called to the community
hospital in San Ignacio. They were
immediately directed to the
emergency room where a male
person was being treated for large
chop wounds, one each to both knees
and another to the mid section of the
Preliminary investigation revealed
that the victim, later identified as San
Ignacio resident, Felix Romero, was
at his mother-in-law’s house on Flamingo Street in San Ignacio when
he went to open the gate for his
mother-in-law to enter. Whilst at
the gate he was reportedly attacked
by four male persons whom he
identified as the Calderon brothers:
Neri and Gerson along with Leroy
Supal and Joshua Concha.
- Invitation To Support HRCB Fundraising Eve:
The Human Rights
Commission of Belize invites
you to support their fundraising
event to be held in San Ignacio
at the Sacred Heart Auditorium
this coming Saturday August 16th
2014 starting at 7:30 p.m..
This event is being done in
partnership with the Rotaract
Club of San Ignacio and consists
of the performance of the
hilarious play "Every Rose has
Thorns" written by pastor Dillon
All proceeds go towards the
continuation of HRCB's human
rights educational trainings and
advocacy programs and the
Rotaract's Club " Send a child
to school scholarship program"
Come out and support us.
- Acne Vulgaris:
Acne vulgaris (or simply acne) is
a common human skin disease,
characterized by areas of seborrhea
(scaly red skin), comedones
(blackheads and whiteheads),
papules (pinheads), nodules (large
papules), pimples, and possibly
scarring. Aside from scarring, its main
effects are psychological, such as
reduced self-esteem and in very
extreme cases, depression or
suicide. One study has estimated the
incidence of suicidal ideation in
patients with acne as 7.1%.
In adolescence, acne is usually
caused by an increase in androgens
such as testosterone, which occurs
during puberty, regardless of sex.
Acne more often affects skin with a
greater number of oil glands; these
areas include the face, the upper part
of the chest, and the back. Severe
acne is inflammatory, but acne can
also manifest in noninflammatory
forms. The skin changes are caused
by changes in pilosebaceous units,
skin structures consisting of a hair
follicle and its associated sebaceous
gland, changes that require androgen
- Two Guatemalan Boys On Remand For Gun and Bullets:
Two Guatemalan boys were
this week captured with a gun and
ammunition inside the national
territory of Belize.
As rangers from Friends for
Conservation and Development
(FCD) continue the task of
protecting the Chiquibul Forest
Reserve, there are reports of yet
another incursion into Belize
The report indicates that at
around 10:45 am on Monday,
August 11, the rangers were on
routine joint patrol with soldiers
of the Belize Defense Force in
the Caracol Archeological
Reserve when they came upon a
group of four Guatemalan male
persons sitting around a fire.
Upon reaching the group, two of
the men escaped while the other
two were captured.
- Penner and Rojo on Drug Charges:
Two men are facing drug
charges after being connected
with a really tiny amount of
They were doing the stuff,
police say, in the Welcome
Center in San Ignacio when
police, acting on information
received, pulled up on them. Police first searched the
Caucasian man dressed in a long
sleeve white shirt with blue
stripes and blue jeans pants while
the other, instantly identified as
Rayford “Rojo” Staine was
wearing a black t-shirt and blue
A search of the Caucasian man
led to the discovery of a
transparent plastic bag containing
0.2 grams of cocaine in his left
pants pocket, while inside the
other front pocket police found
two grams of suspected weed.
Nothing incriminating was found
on Rojo. A search of the area
however, inside a flower pot, led
to the discovery of 1.3 grams of
suspected crack cocaine.
- STAR Humor
- Your Weekly Horoscope and Lucky Numbers
- Letters to the Editor
- Public Notices
Family presses ahead for justice in death of Calgary father Jeffrey Furgala in Belize
Family members of a Calgary man who died while in the Belize police custody in early 2013 say they’ve rejected an offered cash settlement from the country’s government and plan to proceed to trial over claims of negligence.
Jeffrey Furgala, 35 was on vacation in the South American country with his girlfriend the night of Jan. 26 when he was detained by San Ignacio police over claims he was heavily intoxicated. (More details here.)
But family members, including mother Fern Tiberio, have insisted that Furgala was injured earlier in the night and was suffering from the after effects when he was apprehended.
She said her son was ignored after being put behind bars.
Furgala was found unconscious with a bloody nose in his cell with the following morning and rushed to hospital. He was pronounced dead a few days later.
Tiberio and son Chris Furgala have now steered efforts to file legal action against the San Ignacio authorities claiming negligence on the basis that he wasn’t checked on every 45 minutes as specified by Belizean law.
The decision to remove the Belmopan Bandits from the 2014-15 edition of the CONCACAF Champions League may have been the right one, but it could've been handled better.
CONCACAF's relatively new administration missed an opportunity to show it's different from the past regime with its handling of the removal of Belize's representative in the CONCACAF Champions League.
The name 'Champions League' explains the concept. Pit various champions against each other...in a league. But in the past five competitions, Belize hasn't been able to put forth a representative, a streak that will continue this year after the Belmopan Bandits were removed from the competition.
The confederation announced the decision in a news release sent at 6:10 p.m. ET on Aug. 12 - a week after the tournament started and nine days before the Bandits were set to host their first game of the competition. It would've been the first time in history that Belize - a tiny but growing English-speaking country in Central America just south of Mexico on the Caribbean Sea - hosted a Champions League match. In the first tournament under the current format, the Hankook Verdes played their home match in Guatemala, losing both legs by a 6-0 margin.
The CONCACAF Champions League pitch in Guyana is laughable
The debut of a team from Belize in the CONCACAF Champions League will have to wait for at least another season after confederation inspectors ruled that their pitch was unplayable. Belize Premier League champions Belmopan Bandits will be replaced in the competition by Costa Rica's Club Sport Herediano.
CONCACAF inspected the playing surface at the Football Federation of Belize (FFB) Stadium on August 10 for a second time, finding that the conditions did not meet the regulations for Champions League standards. Belmopan were scheduled to play their first game in the competition, at home, on Friday August 22 against El Salvador's Isidro Metapan.
It is a sad story for the Belize national federation who had been hoping to make a return to international club competition in the region. The FFB Stadium had received $1.8 million from FIFA for an upgrade. This included improved lighting, seating for 5,000, separate shower stalls and changing rooms for participating teams and referees.
IMF sees potential spillovers from PetroCaribe
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) in its 2014 Spillover Report released August 18 said it sees potential spillovers including “macroeconomic difficulties” into the economies PetroCaribe now helps. “Venezuela has provided financial support to countries in Latin America and the Caribbean through energy co-operation agreements, under which Venezuela sells oil at market prices, but gives generous financing conditions to beneficiary countries, including long-term loans at low interest rates, and sometimes the possibility to repay in kind,” the IMF said. “The volume of oil sold to the region under various agreements (San Jose, Caracas, Integral Cooperation, and PetroCaribe) has stabilised at around 250,000 barrels per day (bpd) after 2009, with values rising to about US$10 billion in 2012.”
Vestiage Announces Support for Oceana Conservation Organization
Vestiage™, Inc. (“VEST”), the healthy-aging Company, announced today that it is now supporting Oceana, the largest international advocacy group focused only on protecting the world’s oceans.
Scott Kimball, Vestiage CEO stated, “Our Company motto is ‘We Believe Life Deserves Vitality.’ It makes sense that we strongly support the protection of our planet, in particular, the lands and the oceans where our ingredients are found. Oceana is a fierce advocate and is committed to achieving policy victories on behalf of the ocean and sea life. Vestiage and Oceana, which has offices in both Monterey and Newport Beach, have a lot in common. When we launch Monterey Bay Nutraceuticals, which is planned for Q1 2015, we intend to make another announcement that will show how serious our support for Oceana is.”
10 Reasons to Live in Belize
In this infographics, Internationalliving.com, a website that covers topics that include retiring overseas, living abroad, international real estate, investment and travel share their top 10 reasons to live in Belize:
10 BEST UNDERWATER ADVENTURES IN THE WORLD
SWIM WITH WHALE SHARKS
Where: Gladden Spit, Belize.
Whale sharks are the largest fish in the world and despite the intimidating name, are very docile. These gentle giants can be found at the Gladden Spit, near Placencia and Hopkins between March and June, and don't be surprised to find one of these dauntingly large creatures swimming toward you. Whale sharks are a notoriously curious species and are known to swim very close to divers. The appearance of whale sharks is timed with full moons, so be sure to consult a lunar calendar when planning your trip.
Video: Belize tree trimmer, 1min.
This is how you show folks you are good at your job, after you've trimmed the coconut and dead fronds.
Video: Diving the Great Blue Hole, Lighthouse Reef, Belize, 5min.
Our first dive in the famous Blue Hole of Belize. Some people have said there's "nothing to see"....but I thought it was an amazing dive, from dropping off the lip into the haze with large sharks swimming below, the bubbles of divers below rising to the surface, and the huge stalactites and stalagmites appearing at 130 feet around the rim of the sunken cave. Swimming between them was other-worldly. We had 2 great dives afterwards too, at Half Moon Caye. We dove with Belize Diving Services, located on Caye Caulker...highly recommend!
Video: Isla Marisol Belize Dive Highlights, 24min.
Video: Highlights of the first Belize Jazz and Culture Show, 3min.
Video: THE Belize 2014, 5min.
Belize Adventures: SCUBA, snorkeling, spear fishing, cliff jumping, cave exploring, and more.
Video: National Geographic Student Expeditions Belize 2014, 4min.
Video: Zip line Belize GoPro, 4min.
Video: Zip line Belize GoPro x2, 3min.
Video: Zip line Belize GoPro x3, 3min.
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