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#510025 - 12/18/15 11:13 AM Today's Belize News: December 18, 2015
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Specials and Events

Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5, LOVETV, PGTV, West Vision (Cayo) and CTV 3. Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, Rise and Shine Morning Show, and the Dickie Bradley Specials


The San Pedro Sun

Palapa Bar and Grill is coming to San Pedro Town!
The popular Palapa Bar and Grill in Northern Ambergris Caye is undergoing its final preparations to move to their new location. Yes, it’s official: the popular over-the-water bar and grill is moving to San Pedro Town. Their new venue is at the Wet Willy’s Dock, and it promises to be just fabulous. The iconic San Pedro landmark has been operating for over 20 years and is a favorite watering hole for locals and visitors alike. Add a friendly staff, signature dishes and drinks, special events and a carefree crowd and Palapa is a party! They promise the same vibe, and yes, the inner tubes are coming with them! Scott and Jodie Harnish, who have been operating Palapa Bar and Grill for the past nine years, attribute the hard work and good staff to their success today. Their relocation comes as a result of the new ownership of the Palapa Bar and Grill. The property was purchased in January of 2015, by the ‘Palapa Palms Resort’ which is taking over the bar with no intentions of renewing Harnish’s lease.

Oceana Symposium focuses on Belize’s water systems and offshore oil drilling
On Wednesday, December 9th, Oceana Belize held a symposium at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City on the topic of offshore oil exploration in Belize. The theme for the discussion was, ‘The energy of Nature versus the Nature of Energy’, with focus on the state of Belize’s waters and the management and sustainable usage of natural resources while increasing economic development. Just over a decade ago, Belize struck its first commercial oil find in the Cayo district. However, a campaign sparked by the devastating Deepwater Horizon oil spill of 2010 has encouraged an initiative by Oceana to entirely ban offshore drilling in Belize. In a press release issued on December 1st by the Government of Belize (GOB), the government declared that Cabinet announced a legal ban to be instituted to cover selected protected areas that are World Heritage Sites. The areas include: the natural monuments at Lighthouse Reef (the great Blue Hole and Half Moon Caye), Bacalar Chico Marine Reserve and National Park, South Water Caye Marine Reserve, Laughing Bird Caye National Park, Glover’s Reef Marine Reserve and Sapodilla Caye Marine Reserve. The Cabinet also agreed to ban offshore exploration within one kilometer of either side of the barrier reef system.

Green Turtle Fatally Injured at Mexico Rocks
We all know it is illegal to feed the wildlife, be it terrestrial or marine, but it sure is a great way to get a good look at the critters you want to see. Time and again we are cautioned by authorities that this practice is not only unhealthy of the animals but also conditions them to associate man with food, causing them to lose their natural instinct to flee when man is around. For these conditioned animals the sights and sounds of man are nothing more than a dinner bell; and they come running as soon as man arrives. Such is the story for one juvenile Green turtle at the Mexico Rocks snorkeling site, who became so accustomed to being fed by tour operators that he abandoned his natural behavior as a bottom feeder to taking to free water swimming with the fish and sharks. Sadly this surface swimming behavior put the little beggar at risk, and he was fatally ran over by a boat on Wednesday, December 16th.

Dr. Hall out on bail; claims he was wrongfully accused of deviant past
According to Deputy Coastal Executive Officer, Superintendent Henry Jemmott, Dr. Hall was granted bail under the condition that he turns over all travel documents into police custody. Dr. Hall obliged in this request and will also have to check into the San Pedro Police Station twice a week until his first court hearing on Tuesday, February 12th. Hall was charged due to the fact that the license he had obtained on June 23, 2015 was under the name “Robert Bob Hall” which is not his legal name, therefore making the license illegal. The error was made within the Belize Medical Council Board and while the Ministry of Health (MOH) has indicated that they have launched a full investigation into the matter, neither entity has released an official statement. One Monday, December 14th Hall disseminated a statement via email to all of the media houses in the country declaring his innocence of the criminal charges that were placed against him while he was a dentist in North Carolina, USA. In 2005 the doctor was charged with seven counts of injecting semen into his patients’ mouths. His license to practice medicine was revoked, and Hall served four months in jail. Hall’s 1,400 word diatribe ranges from quoting biblical scripture to details on the side effects of a hair growth medication called Propecia in relation to the decrease in seminal ejaculation fluid.

San Pedro High School Girls take silver at the NSSSA Basketball regionals
After claiming the victory at the National Secondary School Sports Association (NSSSA) Basketball Northern Regionals, the San Pedro High School (SPHS) female basketball team traveled to Corozal Town to participate in the national tournament. The NSSSA Basketball Nationals was held at the Corozal Complex in Corozal Town on Friday, December 11th and Saturday, December 12th. Four male and four female teams converged at the venue in hopes of taking the championship: North, Central, West and South. In the end it was the defending champions Saint Catherine’s Academy’s girls and Julian Cho Technical boys who claimed the top prize. But, the SPHS girls still managed to make an impressive mark, claiming the second place for the female championship. In order to advance to the championship games, competing teams had only one chance to earn a spot in the finals, as only the two winning teams in the first day of the competition would advance to the championship matches. In the first game, the SCA girls took the first victory of the tournament over the Delille Academy girls, while in the second game the Julian Cho boys defeated the Gwen Lizarraga male team. In the last set of games for the first day SHC boys lost to Muffles, and SPHS girls easily outscored the SHC girls in a 22-8 point game.

Government of Belize breaks ground on BDF and BCG joint Forward Operating Base
On Wednesday, December 19th the controversial ground breaking of the joint Belize Defense Force (BDF) and Belize Coast Guard (BCG) Forward Operating Base (FOB) was held at an area of land on the northern bank of the of the Sarstoon River in southern Belize. The area where the FOB is to be built had long been claimed by Guatemala as part of their territory, with the country even displaying military hostility towards Belizean armed forces that visit the area. With the ground breaking ceremony over, construction has commenced and the building is to be ready for use within three months. The FOB will bring much needed law enforcement presence to an area that is known for illegal activities.

Ambergris Today

Pic of the Week - Vacation in Belize is Awesome
Blake Cummins vacations in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize and posts this cool picture on his Instagram account stating: “Solid day diving Esmerleda in Belize. We saw a bunch of nurse sharks and it was AWESOME. We agree with him. Below are a couple more pictures he posted while he enjoyed his stay on Ambergris Caye.

Tropic Air Receives ISSA Award for Standard Safety Assessment
In a press release issued this week, the Ministry of Tourism and Civil Aviation, on behalf of the Government of Belize, congratulated the team at Tropic Air for having been awarded the International Airport Transport Association’s (IATA) Standard Safety Assessment Certificate at the Latin America and Caribbean Air Transport Association Annual General Meeting, held in November of 2015. “This is the first such acknowledgement to be awarded to an Americas-based airline, and it gives us great pleasure to have a Belizean-owned carrier pioneer the way forward in our region.” stated the press release. Tropic Air boasted being the first airline to obtain IATA Standard Safety Assessment (ISSA) certification in Latin America. Tony Tyler, ALTA President said.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

BELIZE FISHING REPORT: Weeks of December 6th – December 12th, 2015
It was a pleasure to host the wedding of Adam and Ashley. A great couple from Colorado who lit up the fishing on their combination wedding and honeymoon trip. The more we got out of the North wind the better the fishing got.

Scotty's Crocodile Cove Christmas Party
Scotty's Crocodile Cove Bar & Grill in Corozal invites you for our Christmas Party with live music and Christmas jingles on Wednesday December 23rd. Come celebrate with us. Friendly and lively atmosphere ~~~ Don't miss out~~~

The Farm House Deli
The Farm House Deli offers a fresh take on the neighborhood cafe. Offering fresh from the oven pastries, artisans cheeses, and full array of smoke meats. Corner Rio Grande Ave and Nim Li Punit St., Belmopan, Belize. The Farmhouse Deli- Featured Smoked Meats: Smoked Chicken Breasts, Rotisserie Chicken, Smoked Pork Ribs, Boneless Ham, Turkey Ham Smoked and Cured Pork Loin, Ham Pancetta, Roll Chicken, Roll Turkey, Sweet Cured Bacon Ham Roll, Gingered Chicken Sausage, Smoked Chicken Sausage, Smoked Polish Sausage, Tuscan Sausage, Pepperoni, The Farmhouse Sausage.

Caroling for a Cause
Thank You Vic Murphy for organizing and hosting this Wonderful fundraiser for Liberty Children's Home. On behalf of Liberty we are so Greatful.

Wine de Vine's Annual Clearance Sale
Wine de Vine's Annual Clearance Sale and other special going on now. Check it out.

Cayo Posadas Start
Posadas have begun around Cayo.  The Benque House of Culture started theirs with the Benque Marimba Youths, and the SISE House of Culture with live marimba from the 'Alma De Las Americas' marimba band. "Day 1 Posadas 2015..the journey from Our Lady of Mount Carmel to the Benque House of Culture by the pilgrims with live marimba music,chants & prayers in the streets of Benque Viejo and reaching its destination enriches and uplifts out cultural heritage that is our true spirit and celebration of the season."

Rageology at Thirsty Thursdays
The Rageology Rave is set for January 9th, at Thirsty Thursdays. Limbo shots and CO2 blasters are just a few of the cool things they'll feature at the rave. The Raging Masters. "Kicking off the new year with the first project xyz promotions event Rageology - DJ Mesmerize birthday Celebration Kicking off at 9 pm to 4am. Reach out and party in the new era! The aim is to rave"

The 7th edition of Baffu is out
And it's free to download. Not only are many Cayo artists in there, but they have an article about the new Cayo Mural, entitled 'A Painted Conversation.' The dual poem, 'America,' is worth a read.

FREE SAT prep right at your finger tips!!
Better scores equal better scholarship options! Students use your holiday break to practice your test taking skills and get the best score possible. Need to start practicing for the SAT but can't afford the study book? Here is your chance to take a full length SAT practice test for FREE! Khan academy offers full length practice tests to help you get the best score possible and get into a good school in the U.S. and qualify for scholarships.

Channel 7

Jack Charles Showed Up To Clear His Rice; BAHA Didn't Budge
Three containers of Rice from Guyana arrived at the Big Creek in Belize this morning, and was offloaded into the Port's Compound in Independence Village. Now, as you've been seeing all this week the local rice producers are pressing the government to send it back. The Government agencies, namely, the Belize Agricultural and Health Authority (BAHA), the Ministry of Agriculture, say that Importer Jack Charles does not have the proper permits to clear the rice for sale in Belize. Still, he showed up today and made his attempts to get the BAHA personnel to budge. Our news team was Independence all day today, and Daniel Ortiz has the full story: Daniel Ortiz reporting These 3 containers are currently housing the Guyanese Rice that businessman Jack Charles imported into Belize. It's been temporarily offloaded from the barge which brought it from Santo Tomas, Guatemala.

Baby Nina Still In The Care Of The State; Custody Battle Drags On
Baby Nina will be spending Christmas away from her mother. That is the unfortunate reality that faces 2 year old Nina Charlotte Perez and her embattled mother Ana Liz Perez Gutierrez. In mid-November personnel from the Human Service Department forcibly removed baby Nina from her mother's custody under a provision called the emergency protective care on behalf of the Guatemalan father who claimed the child was essential abducted. The matter ended before the Belize family court and Baby Nina was placed in foster care. Today Nina's mother accompanied by attorney Marcel Cardona appeared at the Belize Family Court in Belize City where they hoped see the matter through. However the father did not appear and the case was adjourned until January 7th 2016, much to the disappointment of the young mother. Ana Liz Perez Gutierrez- Mother "I would have like it to be a little faster, sooner. Because of course every time that my daughter is away from me it affects her. But at this point I can only have faith that in January it wont be delayed any longer and that things would be settled at that point."

PUP's National Convention Date Set; Hon. Fonseca Is Still Leader
The heads of the People's United Party met today for a National Executive Meeting at the PUP office on Queen's Street where they discussed matter pertaining to the national party convention to be held in January 31st which is to decide the new party leader. Now in an interview with the media on Tuesday Henry Charles, Chairman of the Party, said there is no party leader per say. He said and we quote, "The leader stepped down after the election. The national executive is overseeing the governance of the party for now." But it appears the PUP is flip flopping again. Today after the meeting of the executives the secretary general of the Party gave us a different story. Myrtle Palacio, Secretary General - PUP "We have a party leader right now until a new party leader is elected. He is Francis Fonseca. He is also the leader of the opposition." This means that the Party leader, technical still has control of the party's organs, an advantage he has over the other two candidates Cordel Hyde and Johnny Birceño. The only party leader candidate who was present at the executive meeting today was Briceño, but even before the members of the party came out of the meeting, a representative of the executive told us that the candidates will not be speaking to us at this time.

Suspect #19 Charged For The Home Invasion Of the Diplomat's Estate
So far, 18 persons have been charged in connection with the aggravated burglary at Diplomat Sarkis Bou Nahra's residence in Burrell Boom - the majority of them for handling items stolen from the mansion. And, 25 year old Lane Grinage joins the crew who will now be charged. He was caught by police in Seine Byte village last night. He had been wanted since the date of the burglary because police saw him in Burrell Boom in a black car that was used as the main means of transport for the eight man crew that broke into the house. He is expected to be charged for Aggravated Burglary, Conspiracy to commit Aggravated Burglary, Conspiracy to commit Rape, Handling stolen goods and Theft. Notably, Lane Grinage appears in our archives before. Back n 2009 he was charged for burglarizing a resort in Burrell Boom to the tune of thirty three thousand dollars.

GSMS Donated to the Forensics Department
The "Gas Chromatograph Mass Spectrometer," GCMS for short, is a big name for a machine with just as big a role in law enforcement. It could often mean the success or failure in the prosecution of a drug case. How this machine works is that the gas chromatography portion separates the chemical mixture into pulses of pure chemicals and the mass spectrometer identifies and quantifies the chemicals. We know… It sounds very arcane, but at the National Forensics' Department, the professionals use these types of machines to test for drugs and other illicit substances. Today the Department received this machine as another generous donation from the United States Embassy. Ambassador Carlos Moreno was on hand to official hand over the machine and Director Director of the National Forensic Department was on hand to receive the equipment. Henderson told us how this equipment will assist them in their criminal investigation efforts. David Henderson, Director - National Forensic Science Service "As you may be aware that in the past we only use to have cannabis and cocaine. But now there are several type of new drugs coming into the system, so then we must be prepared to deal with whatever substance come into the system."

2015-2016 Sugar Crop Start Marred By Muddy Cane
Ten days ago, we showed you the opening of the sugar crop at the Tower Hill factory in Orange Walk. As we reported at the time, the sugar that was coming in was wet and muddy - because of the late rains which had inundated the cane fields. Well ASR/BSI says the muddy cane is causing under production. The review of the first week of the season shows that "compared to the 2015 crop, sugar in cane is low…which has decreased sugar recovery leading to an unfavorable Tonnes of Cane to Tonnes of Sugar ratio." The problem - according to the millers - is that "Mud in cane has exceeded the required maximum of 4.5%, thereby "increasing the fiber content in cane and affecting milling and efficient steam generation." That's bad news for all industry stakeholders, and it could translate into lost days of operation - meaning diminished production and earnings. In response, the Sugar Cane Production Committee has sent a flier to farmers asking them to do their best to reduce the mud levels of cane going into the factory. The SCPC has also asked the test group leaders to speak to the farmers to implement the right methods to pick up cane. There are specific loading and stacking techniques which farmers can use to minimize mud levels.

Coast Guard Got New Toys For Safety And Preparedness
Last night, we showed you how the Belize Defense Force got a donation of 2 Land Rovers to assist with patrols. Well, today it was the Belize Coast Guard who received several pieces of equipment. These include inflatable boats, and other tactical and safety equipment. The Commandant of the Belize Coast Guard Admiral John Borland told us how all this gear will enhance safety and preparedness. Admiral John Borland, Commandant - Belize Coast Guard "The equipment you see here laid out is part of the enduring friendship program, the partnership that we have with the United States Government Southern Command and State Department INL under which most of the equipment you see displayed today came from. There are a variety of equipment raging from zodiac tactical boats that are mainly going to be employed by the seals for tactical operations. There are life jackets. There is 200 of them on display. They are going to be issued to the fleet. The fleet are the people who do the work on a daily basis, they go to sea every day, so they need the best equipment that we have. The foul weather gear is also going to be issued to the fleet. There are 200 sets and they are going to be use whenever the fleets on operations in foul weather. Foul weather means inclement weather or bad weather. The better you take care of a man under inclement conditions, the better he will operate."

Mother Ships On The Way For The Coast Guard
So with all this state of the art equipment, the Coast Guard also need new patrol vessels to better protect Belize's waters. As you heard, CEO Lovell spoke about a mothership approach and he is referring to 2 patrol ships that will be built for the Belize Coast Guard. The government has already approved the funds for these ships but CEO Lovell told us they are in the planning stage - meeting with their American and Mexican partners on the construction and delivery of these 2 ships. "Well we are hoping to partner with any of our friendly nations. As you note I already made an appeal to not just the US Southern Command, we are been talking to Mexican friends and things are looking good for us. But it's not just the acquisition of these assets, we must look at the sustenance and maintenance of these vessels as we get them. That is where I would want to see them partnering with us. Because this is not just for Belize, this is as far as I see for the safety of the region and to a large extent those countries which transshipment of narcotics, or weapons, even human smuggling and by the way we have seen a trend in terrorism. Countries that will more than likely be targets for these types of illicit activities will certainly benefit from Belize having the kind of capacity for our Coast Guard and our maritime people here in Belize to be able to do their part in the whole bigger regional security efforts." The cost of getting these vessels is over $13 million US dollars. The 1st ship is expected to arrive early 2017. There will also be training for officers on how to operate and maintain these ships.

The US Embassy Continues To Donate To Local Law Enforcement
And there are also other projects that the Belize Coast Guard and the US Embassy are working on. US Ambassador Carlos Moreno told us about the ongoing construction of a maintenance facility at the Coast Guard Headquarters and the upcoming initiatives that will further enhance the efficiency of the force. Carlos Moreno, US Ambassador "In terms of security overall, it's something yes. CARSI funds really involve not only the BDF but also the Belize Police Department through the provision of similar types of equipment equipping their mobile interdiction team. Here you see the construction of a maintenance facility. I would like to see construction of a maintenance facility for the motor vehicles we provide to the Belize Police Department and I believe in 2016, we will be providing a couple of dozens motor vehicles for the police department. But my concern is what about sustainability, maintenance - this equipment is all nice to have, it's also very expensive, but this equipment can and should last and be maintained for years." As you heard, more vehicles will be donated to the police department next year.

Guatemalan Illegal Farmer Arrest Was Important
In yesterday's news, you heard the latest on the Chiquibul Forest from the Friends for Conservation and Development. One part of the 75 minute press conference we didn't air - has to do with the arrest of a single farmer back on November 26th. It was a minor news item - but according to the Executive Director of FCD, it had a major impact on environmental enforcement. Here's how he explained it:.. Raphael Manzanero - Executive Director, FCD "Just a couple of weeks ago there was one of the persons that were detained and that guy for the very first time it was a milpa farmer. If you look at the historical context in Chiquibul, there has never been an arrest on a Guatemalan farmer. This time this person was caught and this person was charged $6,000 which was really something historical in our aspect of looking at the environmental enforcement." In lieu of paying the fine, the farmer will have to spend three years in prison.

BEL Caribe Gave Away Another Hundred Xmas Hampers
100 needy families received Christmas hampers today. The hampers were for those families with kids suffering from Cancer, HIV and diabetes. These families struggle every day to provide basic needs for their kids and those regular doctor visits and medications don't make it any easier. Today the Founder of the '1000 Smiles for Cleyon' Foundation Michelle Rudon told us how significant these hampers are especially during this time of year. While these hampers surely brighten the christmas season for these families, the sordid reality remains - these families need financial assistance for cancer treatment. One little boy who is in need of assistance is Baby Izac. Baby Issac needs $2,000 to get his surgery in January. You can call the foundation at 223 2448 to find out more about how you can help. The Christmas hampers will be distributed to these families today and tomorrow. Bel- Caribe partnered with Smart, PUMA and Travelers to make these donations possible.

Scotia Cut A Cheque For Outreach Organizations
And the donations keep on coming - this time from Scotia Bank. Today at their Albert Street Office they handed over 2 cheques - one to Hand in Hand Ministries and one to the Belize Red Cross. Representatives from both organizations told us that the money will used to assist those affected by the recent floods. Hand in Hand Ministries got $30,000 and the Belize Red Cross got $10,000. In terms of the houses that will be built for the flood victims - construction should start in February. The construction will be a joint project between Scotia bank and Hand in Hand Ministries.

MLA/TAA Got The Equator Prize
The Maya Leaders Alliance and the Toledo Alcalde Association, these are the leaders of the 39 Mayan Communities in the South, and very often, they make the local news. Well, a week ago, these indigenous leaders made major news outside of Belize when they were awarded the 2015 Equator Prize. What is the Equator Prize? Well, it's given to 20 outstanding organizations who advocate indigenous rights either to advance sustainable development solutions for people, nature, or resilient communities who are under pressure to protect the forests, their homes, or their cultural heritage. This year, the Maya Leaders Alliance was among the 20 awardees, coming from a pool of hundreds of nominations worldwide. They were recognized among their peers from other countries for the landmark victory in getting Maya Land Rights recognized in Belize. Cristina Coc, the Spokesperson for the Maya Leaders Alliance and Alfonso Cal, the President of the Toledo Alcaldes Association went to Paris, France to accept this award on Last week Thursday. Yesterday, while we had to opportunity, we got a reaction from Coc about the prestigious award and it's implications.


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#510026 - 12/18/15 11:13 AM Re: Today's Belize News: December 18, 2015 [Re: Marty]
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Channel 5

Guyana Rice Blocked at Big Creek Port
A shipment of milled rice from Guyana arrived at the Big Creek Port in southern Belize overnight where it remains at present. At the port, all was quiet and calm [...]

P.U.P. National Convention Will Be Held in Belmopan
Following the official announcement of three aspiring leaders for the P.U.P. on December fifteenth, the party held a National Executive meeting at Independence Hall this afternoon to determine details of [...]

International Abduction Case of Baby Nina Barrera Perez Adjourned
Baby Nina Charlotte Barrera Perez will remain in a foster home through the Christmas holidays, as the matter was adjourned in Family Court today. The two year old was removed [...]

Mother Analiz Gutierrez Remains Hopeful That She Will Retain Custody
Analiz Gutierrez was in court and clearly distraught that the matter could not have been resolved in today’s hearing. She told News Five that she is disappointed that her daughter [...]

Gutierrez Says She is Afraid to Return to Guatemala
If the court rules that baby Nina was indeed removed from the country illegally, then the child will be ordered to be returned to Guatemala. Gutierrez would then need to [...]

US Embassy donates Boats and Gear to Belize Coast Guard
Two significant donations were made today by the US Government. We start with the Belize Coast Guard which received a variety of equipment to bolster operations of national security in [...]

Forensic Science Service Receives Cutting Edge Equipment
Another donation by the U.S. Embassy was granted to the National Forensic Science Service in Ladyville in the form of cutting edge equipment.  A gas chromatograph mass spectrometer machine, also [...]

US Embassy Will Provide Training
Training for use of the equipment will be provided by the US Embassy, and Director Henderson says that in January, a staff member returns with a master’s degree in forensic [...]

11 Injured in Afternoon Accident on the Phillip Goldson Highway
There was an accident on the Phillip Goldson Highway this afternoon at around one-thirty. According to reports, a white pickup being driven by Corozal resident Fernando Chan was between mile [...]

Mexican Earthquake Rocks Belize
At about one-fifty this afternoon, the tremors of an earthquake were felt in many parts of Belize and Guatemala. The earthquake rumbled in Tonala, Chiapas, in southern Mexico and registered [...]

Santa Cruz 13 Vindicated
The Santa Cruz Thirteen appeared before Magistrate Emerson Banner on Wednesday to an unexpected retraction of the charge of unlawful imprisonment.  That is after the group of villagers was trooped [...]

Former B.S.I. Employee’s Wrongful Termination Suit Dismissed
A B.S.I. employee was terminated after thirty-one years on the job as an Electrical and Instrumental Technician.  He took his case to court in hope of being re-instated or in [...]

Construction Worker on Bail for Drug Trafficking Charge
Belize City Construction Worker, thirty year old Sherlock Herrera, who was busted at his home allegedly in possession of one hundred and eight grams of cannabis, is out on bail [...]

800 Families Celebrate Christmas Thanks to the Salvation Army
Eight hundred needy families will be celebrating Christmas with goodies courtesy of the Salvation Army’s annual Christmas hamper drive. The first group of families received their grocery packages at three [...]

Healthy Living – Yoga, the Natural Remedy for Overindulgence
Let’s be honest, in exactly one week, the inundation of food and drinks will be upon us. For some of us, it really doesn’t matter how many times we tell [...]

CTV3

Corozal Police To Increase Security Measures During Christmas Season
During this festive season the community is sure to be occupied with festive activities and last minute shopping. And while shoppers hit the stores criminals are hitting the streets and neighborhoods waiting for their next prey. Time has shown that during the Christmas season the country experiences and increase in crime especially when it comes to burglaries and robberies. In an effort to minimize criminal activity within the Corozal District, the community police unit have boost up police surveillance within Town. With extra patrol comes a number of advices for shop owners who are asked to be cautious when handling money and to ensure that surveillance cameras are on at all times.

Case Of Baby Nina Adjourned To January 7th 2016
A couple of weeks ago, we informed you about the case of baby Nina who was removed from the custody of her mother by the Department of Human Services. Nina’s mother, Analiz Gutierrez, is a Belizean while the father is a Guatemalan citizen. The parents were battling the custody of the child in Guatemalan territory just before Gutierrez left with her child and returned to Belize. When Nina was taken away from her mother, she was placed in the custody of a foster family and then placed under the care of close relative’s allowing the mother visitation rights until the date of the court hearing initially set for next year in the month of January. The Belize Family Court however, decided to expedite the case of baby Nina and it was heard this morning in Belize City. But the father was a no-show so the case was adjourned to January 7th 2016 giving the child’s father another opportunity to appear for the hearing.

Phillip Goldson Highway Records Major Traffic Accident
Just before two this afternoon, traffic was backed up at the Phillip Godson Highway after a white Ford Ranger pickup truck heading towards Orange Walk lost control and turned over. According to a police officer at the scene, the driver of the vehicle, Fernando Chan, from Ranchito Village, Corozal, was making his way back from Belmopan when his pickup truck suffered a blowout and he lost control of the vehicle which turned over on mile 33 on the Phillip Goldson highway. According to the officer, there were approximately ten other persons in the vehicle at the time of the accident, including minors. While there were no fatalities, all passengers seemed to be suffering from serious face and body injuries and were transported to the Northern Regional Hospital and the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital. We will have more information on this story tomorrow.

Tremors Of Strong Earthquake Also Felt In Northern Part Of Belize
A strong earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 6.6 struck southern Mexico, close to the town of Tres Picos in the state of Chiapas with tremors felt as far as Guatemala and Belize, located about 320 miles from the state of Chiapas. The earthquake, which struck at 1:49 p.m., was centered about 5 miles southeast of Tres Picos, or 19 miles northwest of Pijijiapan. It struck about 72 miles deep, making it a relatively deep earthquake. Mexico's National Seismological Service initially measured the strength of the earthquake at 6.4 but later upgraded it to a significantly stronger 6.6. The United States Geological Survey however, puts the preliminary magnitude of 6.4. Computer models from the USGS estimated that some 22.1 million people may have felt the earthquake, including 232,000 people who may have observed "moderate" shaking.

PlusTV

Tour guide chopped to the head on Goff’s Caye
A tour guide was chopped to the head while on Goff’s Caye. On Tuesday December 15, 52-year-old Glenford Gill, a Belizean tour guide, reported that at about 4:00 p.m. that afternoon, after the tourists had left Goff’s Caye, a man whom he knows as Henry , who appeared to be under the influence of alc...

Coast Guard find floating sack of weed
The Belize Coast Guard discovered a “wet drop” on Tuesday December 15. The term “wet drop” is used to describe packages of drugs found floating in the sea, dropped off by drug planes for local drug dealers to pick up and distribute. Sometimes, drug dealers miss the packages and those packages someti...

San Pedro man arrested for drug trafficking
A San Pedro man was arrested and charged for drug trafficking. The arrest came on Tuesday 15th December after police conducted a search at the residence of 37-year-old Deon Faber located on Laguna Drive, Boca Del Rio area San Pedro Town. Police say that during that raid, they found several plastic b...

Police hunt for masked, armed man in Camalote area
A 43 year old Honduran Domestic of Camalote Village reported that on Tuesday December 15 while at the Belize River in the company of her son, she noticed a male person dressed in full black clothing wearing a mask covering his entire face except for his eyes. The woman told police that the masked ma...

Ex-BWS workers demand compensation as company decides against appeal
On November 25, Supreme Court Justice Michelle Arana issued a judgment in favour of six terminated workers from Belize Water Services Limited who sued for wrongful dismissal. They received three months’ salary and vacation pay for that dismissal, which came as a result of salacious letters circulate...

Bangladeshis in Belize mark national day
This morning in Belize City, the newly formed Bangladesh Association of Belize hosted a small flag raising ceremony in downtown at the Battlefield Park to mark their homeland’s national day. Bangladesh, formerly East Bengal, broke away from neighboring India and Pakistan following intense civil war ...

Phillip Goldson Highway Renovation
Today, December 16, the Government of Belize, through the Ministry of Works & Transport, signed a construction contract with CISCO Construction , in the amount of BZ$13,620,000.00, to carry out road works on the Phillip Goldson Highway. Government has secured a Loan from the Caribbean Developmen...

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Accident near mile 34 on Phillip Goldson highway
Reports reaching BMG’s newsroom are of a traffic accident around mile 34 and 35 of the Philip Goldson Highway near the old Intelco Tower. Pictures sent to us show that paramedics and police officers are in the area. This is a developing story and […]

U.S. donates to Belize Coast Guard
The U.S. government made separate donations to Belizean services today. The Coast Guard this morning received more than a million dollars Belize in equipment including eight Zodiac patrol boats to be used by the elite SEAL unit. And this afternoon, the National Forensic Science Service […]

Showdown at Big Creek over imported rice delayed
Three 20 foot containers containing the controversial imported rice from Guyana arrived at the Big Creek Port in Independence Village at 5 this morning and as of now are still awaiting clearance. Reports from the scene say importer Jack Charles has yet to arrive. The […]

Charges reduced for Santa Cruz 13
The charges against the Santa Cruz 13 have been reduced. The announcement was made yesterday when the 12 villagers and Cristina Coc appeared once again in court for the charge of unlawful imprisonment. The group had been arrested on June 24th after an incident in Santa Cruz […]

Earthquake in Mexico felt in Belize
Just before 2:00 p.m. an earthquake with a 6.4 magnitude on the Richter scale occurred near Pijijiapan, Chiapas, Mexico. Tremors from the earthquake were felt in Northern Belize and as far as Belize City.

Cayo Police find Marijuana in Arenal village
Cayo Police have found more weed in the Arenal village. The discovery was made during a foot patrol along the bank of the Mopan River in that village. Police reported that they noticed a Hispanic male walking with a garbage bag over his shoulder […]

Police find ammunition on Banak street
Police recovered ammunition during a search on Banak Street on Saturday December 12th, 2015. Authorities say that the discovery was made around 6:00 in the evening and found 9 millimetre Aguila brand live rounds. No arrests were made as no one was in the area at the […]

Belize City man charged for less than 4 ounces of weed
Belize City police made more arrests for drug related offenses this week. The Police Department reports that on Wednesday December 16th they searched a room in a building on #2426 Saint Jude Street around6:10 in the evening. There they discovered a bag containing 10 single […]

33-year-old charged for rape
One man is under investigation for unlawful sexual intercourse with a 12-year-old. Belize City police said the minor, along with her mother, reported on Wednesday that on November 11th, 2015 at about 4:30 p.m. a man took her to a house on Fairweather Street in Belize City where […]

Two Santa Rosa residents charged for drug trafficking
Two people, including an 18-year-old, have been arrested and charged for drugs. Police report that on December 16th a search of a residence in the Santa Rosa Village in Stann Creek, belonging to 39-year-old Ramona Ack, led to the discovery of a small rice […]

Blogs

The Barbershops of San Pedro, Belize
For a town of about 13,000 permanent residents, we have an amazing amount of barbershops. Vacationing visitors do not get their hairs cut – but guys on the island like to keep their ‘dos high and tight and their shaves close and clean. One barber told me some guys like to get a touch up every 4-5 days! So I thought I’d take a walk to town and see how many shops I could photograph. And it was easy to start with the one right across the street from me. Technically not a barbershop but they have one of the grooviest radio theme songs you will ever hear.

Why Spend Christmas and New Year’s anywhere but Belize?
If the end of the year triggers the lyrics from the iconic Christmas song made famous by Frank Sinatra—“Oh, the weather outside is frightening…let it snow, let it snow, let it snow!”—but you’re not looking forward to that snow and ice one bit–we’d like to remind you that life is short and you should think seriously about taking yourself out of that dreary mess. Where to go? Belize, of course. And specifically Ambergris Caye. This popular island getaway has been known to lift the dreariest mood in a matter of minutes, so see if it doesn’t make more sense to come here where the weather is always perfect. Need convincing? A variety of international travel authorities and rating websites including Travel + Leisure magazine have proclaimed Belize the best destination in Central America, so why would you want to spend Christmas and New Year’s anywhere else? Establish your own tradition by devoting Christmas Day to doing what you love: scuba diving, deep-sea diving, fishing, touring ancient Mayan ruins and caves or just staring out at the tranquil turquoise waters of the sea from the best vantage point of all: A cozy hammock hung on a private veranda that’s big enough for two.

Exploring the Ruins of Caracol – Photo Essay
In Belize, we finally decided to give Mayan ruins another shot, and Caracol was the perfect spot to do it. We found ourselves with a personal guide, on a day when barely anyone was visiting the ruins. During the height of Caracol, over 100,000 Mayans called this land home. Rediscovered in 1937, it’s been visited by many archeologists over the years. Today, many of the buildings remain buried beneath the ground. Archeologists excavate, then bury the buildings to protect their delicacy. Caana, the sky palace, is to this day the tallest building in Belize. This was once the administrative building of the king. The climb is steep, and the descent is perilous.

International Sourcesizz

Loan recovery management featured in CDB training programme for the first time
Caribbean Development Bank’s 2015 training programme for development finance institutions, which was held in collaboration with the Development Bank of St Kitts and Nevis, closed on Friday in St Kitts. The four-week, four-module, training programme opened on November 16, with the last module being ‘Loan Recovery Management with Focus on Legal Issues’ which, according to the module’s organiser Tyrone Jones, is the first time it had been offered, based on the demand and the feedback from CDB’s borrowing institutions.

Strong mag. 6.5 earthquake - Near Coast of Chiapas, Mexico on Thursday, 17 December 2015
Includes lots of "I felt it" reports from Belize.

Students performing service in Belize over winter break
A group of 14 Cornell College students will travel to San Pedro, Belize, from Jan. 2-9, 2016, to perform service at an elementary school visited in the past by Cornell education students. This is the second Alternative Winter Break sponsored by the college’s Career and Civic Engagement Center. In March Cornell students will participate in a 12th year of Alternative Spring Break trips. Cornell currently ranks 3rd among Breakaway Spring Break Chapters nationally for percentage of students participating, with more than 100 students on spring break service trips in 2015. Students organize and lead the trips. The Belize group will be working with Ambergris Caye Elementary School, which is one of the schools students visit during education professor Jill Heinrich’s courses on comparative education in Belize. “We will be teaching lessons in science, goal-setting, theater, and computer science, as well as aiding teachers in their classrooms,” she said. “We will be running our own after-school program and putting on family nights as well.”

The Cave of the Crystal Sepulchre
It sounds like a quest straight out of Indiana Jones. Lost in the jungle of Belize is a mysterious cave that contains several sets of human remains, including the crystalised bones of the “Crystal Maiden.” The site is called Actun Tunichil Muknal, literally “Cave of the Crystal Sepulchre”. Locals sometimes call it Xibalba, the Mayan name for the underworld. It’s an apt sobriquet, as the cave is home to more than a dozen skeletons — some of them children. The reason for the presence of the skeletons is uncertain, though many believe that they were human sacrifices, possibly made to appease the rain god Chac or the gods of the underworld. Other theories suggest the remains are of those accused of witchcraft, whose bodies were left unburied in the cave so that their spirits would remain trapped inside. The youngest skeleton is of a one-year-old infant. The other infants are interred in the cave, ranging in ages from one to three years old. Some of them are entombed in crevices in the walls or in narrow adjoining chambers. Additional children skeletons include a child of about seven and a teenager who seems to have been bound before being killed.

El Salvador Ready to Host Summit of Central American Integration System
The foreign ministers of the Central American Integration System (SICA, in Spanish) continue preparations for the summit of the organization to be held tomorrow in San Salvador. The first activities of the event took place yesterday with the Meeting of the Council of Foreign Ministers of SICA in order to follow the progress of projects of regional nature, reported Prensa Latina sources of the organization. During the meeting, the ministers talked, among other aspects, about the reports resulting from the analysis on the future of the Central American Regional Integration and the strengthening of the criminal investigation, it was added. They also followed up today the programs to be developed, in meetings with the Minister of Foreign Affairs of Chile, Edgardo Riveros, and the observer countries in the System.

Videos

  • Road Trip through Mexico Guatemala and Belize, 4min.

  • Ep 156 - Belize and back again, 3min. A couple more things to do in the city before returning to the lodge to re-group myself. After which back to the city for a couple meetings which might just help put gas in the tank. Also, I learnt one does not have to go back to the border to renew passport stamps and Bike permits! Great news!

  • BEL Assists St. Mary's Feeding Program, 1min. After learning of recent challenges faced by St. Mary's Feeding Program, BEL committed its support by making a donation to ensure that 170 children receive a daily nutritious meal in a comfortable setting.

  • Exploring the Ruins of Caracol, 9min.

  • Belize and Guatemala, 4min. We started out our trip renting a car in Belize City and driving over the border (which was a huge process) to Tikal National Park in Guatemala. We made a pit stop in San Ignacio, Belize and visited the Mayan ruins Cahel Pech. We started out our Tikal trip with a guided tour at 4 A.M. and hiked to the top of the tallest temple to watch the sunrise. The best part was hearing the jungle wake up. We spent the entire day climbing and exploring all of the Tikal temples and wishing that there were more uncovered already. Then we made our way back to Belize and took a water taxi to San Pedro, which is part of Ambergris Island. We rode bikes to Secret Beach, ate lobster burritos, slid down the best waterslide over and over and best of all....we went scuba diving! I loved it so much and Belize happens to be a scuba diving mecca. We also swam with sharks, which was pretty cool. This trip was un-BELIZE-able!

  • Belize Audubon Society Bird Guide Training Draft, 9min.

  • Belize: Diving Mini Elbow, 14min. Throw Back Thursday!! Rewind to our first dive in Belize at Mini Elbow. Enjoy!

  • Sergio Garcia and Leeroy Banner Continue the Conversation on Importing Rice from Guyana to Belize, 35min.

  • Belize Trip, 13min. Hanging out with friends in Caye Caulker, Belize

  • Travel to Belize - Western Belize, 1min. Travel to Belize and discover the magic of the beautiful Central American country. In Western Belize, you can find warm local people, incredible biodiversity, ancient cultures, and astounding Mayan Ruins. Discover Belize. Discover how to be!

  • Travel to Belize - Southeast Belize, 1min. Travel to Belize and discover a worldly paradise of white sand beaches, welcoming local people, and one of the world's best coral reefs. In Southeast Belize, you can take life slowly and discover just why its people are considered some of the friendliest on Earth.

  • Travel to Belize - Northern Islands, 1min. Travel to Belize's Northern Islands and discover the true essence of the Caribbean: amazing beaches, beautiful coral reefs, friendly locals, and unforgettable cuisine. Discover Belize. Discover how to be.

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