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6/21/2014 to 6/30/2014
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June 30, 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

Doctor Love: Mothers and Fathers
Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length. Dear Doctor Love, When my boyfriend and I first got together his mother seemed to like me very much. She went out of her way to […]

Having been in on the San Pedro Lobster Festival from its beginning seven years ago, it is without a doubt one of the most challenging, rigorous, and fun event in San Pedro. Since its inception by a few of us seven years ago, we managed to be creative, make do, stretch the limits, and fill in the blanks to make it all happen. What many of us know and often forget to acknowledge is: The integral part of the San Pedro Lobster Festival is Rebecca Arceo. She does not get paid, she manages, somehow to make all the cogs fit the wheel, to orchestrate the best concerto written, to line up people, places and things that make the event fun for locals, families, and tourists alike. She is batting 1,000 since that first year when she needed to figure out how to light the booths, how to get businesses interested, how to block off the street, how to clean up the mess and a multitude of other jobs that no one but the committee knows about.

Wolfe’s Woofer: Sportsmanship
“Davin is playing soccer today,” she said. “Do you want to come watch the game?” “I’m his grandfather.” I said. “Of course I want to go the game. What kind of team is he on?” “It’s little boy’s football,” she said. “They are all between the ages of seven and ten years old. The match is at five o’clock.” I was late getting away from home for the game and then I had a flat tire. By the time I got there the players were just breaking for half time.

Letter to the Editor: San Pedro Lobster Festival Committee say Thank You!
The San Pedro Lobster Festival and San Pedro Business Association would like to take this opportunity to thank each and every sponsor, business, individual and participant that made this event successful this year. Our Grand Sponsors were Bowen and Bowen Ltd and the Belize Tourism Board in conjunction with the Honorable Minister of Tourism and Civil Aviation Manuel Heredia Jr and other major sponsors include Tabony Industries, NICH (National Institute for Culture and History) and the Border Management Agency, Sandy Point Resorts and the San Pedro Town Council. The businesses that hosted the events for the Lobster Crawl Passport were El Divino Restaurant at Banana Beach Resort, Caribbean Villas Hotel, Pirate’s Treasure Restaurant and Chill Bar, Hol Chan Marine Reserve, Crazy Canucks at Exotic Caye Resort, Sunrise Realty, Pineapple’s Restaurant at Ramon’s Village Resort, Belize Chocolate Factory, Pedro’s Pizza at Pedro’s Hotel, Mesa Cafe, Fido’s Courtyard, Bar & Restaurant, Wayo’s Beachside Beernet, Wet Willy’s Bar & Smokehouse Grill and Seaduced by Belize. The Lobster Crawl Passport crew being Christine Syme and Emilse Marin deserve a big pat on the back for being at each and every event selling t-shirts and stamping passports.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Fundraiser: Go Big for Biggs!
On June 24th in San Pedro Belize, boat Captain Biggs noticed 2 tourist in the water struggling with the current. He went in to save them and in turn his boat capsized, was destroyed and he lost evetything including his livelihood. I think we all knew Biggs would give his life for anyone, now he has proven it! I am reaching out to those who can help a man who put his life on the line to save total strangers. Lets give Biggs back his life, just like he did for the 2 people he saved. I can't think of a more deserving man to help in his time of need.

Pitbulls kill man
Pitbulls reportedly killed a man in Independence Village, Stann Creek on Friday night. The incident happened at around 11:30 p.m. and an elderly man reportedly found the victim barely hanging onto life. The man, whose name is still unknown, was rushed to the Independence clinic […]

North America warns against travel to Haiti
The United States and Canadian governments have warned their nationals against traveling to Haiti on grounds that there has been a reported increase in crime in some parts of the French-speaking Caribbean country. “You should exercise a high degree of caution due to high crime […]

Traffic accident leaves man seriously injured
Gilbert Henry, 34, is in the Western Regional Hospital with head and leg injuries following a road traffic accident. The incident occurred at around 10 p.m. on Friday at the intersection with Constitution Drive and Forest Drive in Belmopan. According to Elder Paredes, 32, he […]

Patrick JonesPJ

Belizean wins Houston Caribbean Pageant
A Belizean woman has won the inaugural Houston Caribbean Queen pageant. Rheisha Shol, originally from Punta Gorda town, captured the title on Saturday night during the event which was held at the Stafford Civic Center in Stafford, Texas. Shol beat out seven other contestants to win the title which was billed as “a cultural, educational and festive event that seeks to celebrate the talent and intellectual abilities of young Caribbean women.” Congratulations Rheisha Shol.

Vehicles crash on the “Benque Road”
At least one person was injured in a road traffic accident this evening on the George Price Highway in Cayo. According to preliminary information, three vehicles were involved in the crash which happened near mile 21 on the George Price Highway near the village of San Jose Succotz. The particulars of the incident and the condition of the occupants of the vehicles are not yet know. Police from San Ignacio town were on the scene shortly after the incident which happened sometime after 6 o’clock this evening.

Roaring Creek and Ontario teams thrill softball fans with exciting game
The Roaring Creek Grace Kennedy and Ontario Rebels softball teams played one of the better softball matches of the 2014 campaign in the Senior Cayo Women’s Tournament on Sunday. The game was played in Las Flores, Belmopan and Roaring Creek needed 8 innings to overcome the Ontario Rebels and take home the victory. (Softball games are normally 7 innings.) But on Sunday, the Ontario Rebels tied the game in the bottom of the 7th inning at 8-8. The Ontario Rebels came close to winning the game by forfeit after catcher Lisandra Guy was seriously hurt on a close play at home plate. Guy, clearly could not continue behind the plate, and with no bench player available, the coach decided to have Guy play first base and brought in his left fielder to the catcher’s position.


Day 4: Welcome to San Pedro, Belize
Lindsay and I woke up in our Belize City Hostel, the Sea Breeze Guesthouse, after a solid night of sleep. I actually woke up about an hour earlier than Linds and wrote in my travel journal on our balcony. Our balcony shared a door with our next door neighbor. He came out and we chatted a bit. He’s from Los Angeles and comes to Belize for a week or two every year in May. The sky was a cloudy and looked like impending rain. Other than that it was a decent day, aka less humidity! We hopped on the boat and enjoyed the 1.5 hour ride to San Pedro. The boat was nice and basic. There was plenty of room for everyone, but I can imagine that it is more crowded during the high season. We arrived on the San Pedro dock around 10:30 and hit the first cafe we found for breakfast. Right across the water taxi dock is a little cafe called Licks. It was a great little breakfast place and we both had the traditional Belizean breakfast of fried jack, eggs, beans, and cheese. It was yummy!

Placencia, Belize’s Lobsterfest is One Giant Beach Party
Even though I live on a gorgeous beach in Ambergris Caye, Belize, travelling south to Placencia always feels like a beach holiday. Placencia Village is set at the end of a long, very narrow peninsula…for most of its development, it was accessible only by boat (or a tedious long drive down a very bad road). It has a very distinct feel. Summer vacation. One I’ve likened to Cape Cod or Montauk in the states. Pretty pastel wooden houses, a long sandy beach, a lazy pedestrian main street (“the Sidewalk”), funky bars, art shops and restaurants plus a fantastic ice cream shop. They even have super cute Creole sidewalk names.

Statement on Population and Development in Belize
By: Ms. Judith Alpuche CEO Ministry of Human Development, Social Transformation and Poverty Alleviation Mr. Chairman, Excellencies, Distinguished Delegates Belize wishes to align itself with the statement made by the distinguished delegate from Costa Rica on behalf of CELAC. Mr. Chairman, let me begin by expressing sincerest thanks to the Secretary-General for his three excellent reports that have assisted greatly in informing this important session of the Commission on Population and Development. This 47th session of the CPD provides a good opportunity to pause to assess the gains we have made under the Programme of Action, but more importantly to agree on how to advance our efforts to ensure sustained,equitable economic growth and sustainable development for all our people. We also wish to thank the UN System as a whole and the UNFPA in particular, for their partnership and support to Member States during the global survey process and the regional reviews which have informed the “Framework of Actions for the follow-up to the ICPD beyond 2014”. For Belize the preparation of our responses for the global survey provided us with an excellent opportunity to reflect on the meaning of human rights in the context of our own population dynamics and national development. The process enabled a stocktaking of government’s and civil society’s efforts to make human rights real and meaningful for Belizeans.

Banana Cinnamon Bread
Ingredients 1/2 cup lukewarm water 3 teaspoons yeast 1/4 cup sugar 1/4 cup Greek-style yogurt 1/2 cup mashed overripe bananas (about 2 bananas) 2 3/4 cups (12 3/8 ounces) bread flour 1 teaspoon kosher salt 1 teaspoon vanilla 1 tablespoon olive oil 1/2 cup brown sugar 1 tablespoon cinnamon Procedures 1 In the bowl of your stand mixer, combine the water, yeast, and a pinch of the sugar and set it a aside a few minutes to get frothy. 2 Add the remaining sugar, yogurt, bananas, bread flour, salt, and vanilla. Knead with the dough hook until the cleans the sides of the bowl and start to get elastic.

Photo Essay: The 2014 Caye Caulker Lobster Festival
The 2014 Caye Caulker Lobsterfest happened this weekend and it was huge success. I went to this event a few years ago and it was much smaller than now. I am happy to see a lot more Belizeans partaking in local travel since it is great for the economy. Here are a few of the best photos of the event. 10 Photos of the Caye Caulker Lobster Festival

Photo Essay: The 2014 Placencia Lobsterfest
Every summer the tiny Southern village of Placencia hosts their annual Lobsterfest to commemorate the beginning of the lobster season and this year the festival was bigger than ever, drawing crowds from all across Belize and the world. Highlights included the 2014 Placencia Lobsterfest official raffle, live jam sessions, food competitions, the Panerrifix Steel Drum Band, the Benque Viejo Marching Bank, and the eagerly anticipated Lionfish tournament . 10 Photos of the Placencia Lobsterfest

Top Ten Reasons to Visit Belize
What draws thousands of visitors every year to this small Caribbean/Central American destination? We suggest plenty of reasons you might want to visit Belize, although once you have visited you may be able to think of many more. Come stay with us here on Southwater Caye at the Blue Marlin! 1. A touch of luxury: At Blue Marlin we are in the heart of nature with pristine coral reef and white sand beach at our doorstep, but not lacking of modern conveniences. Our comfortable rooms offer air conditioning, warm showers, flat screen TVs, and fine linens. Offering a host of water sports in the warm sea, the outdoor life beckons at Blue Marlin Beach Resort. We also have an onsite restaurant, bar, water sports amenities,and entertainment, making this a truly relaxing holiday in paradise. 2. Island hopping: If you think staying on a small island might give you cabin-fever, think again. There are a lot of surrounding islands in our Southwater Caye marine reserve where you can explore the beautiful barrier reef, offering opportunities for fishing, diving, and snorkeling.

The June 29th 2014 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE

This Week's Stories:

  • Guerra GoesTo Jail Again:
    A troubled Santa Elena man was today remanded to prison on gun and ammunition charges. Residents of Carmen Street in Santa Elena got a scare of their lives on Monday when Rodel Guerra, 27, busted out of his father’s #14 Carmen Street house brandishing a 16 gauge shotgun and a pocket load of cartridges. The matter was reported to the police who promptly arrived on the scene just in time to see Guerra ridding himself of the shotgun and cartridges before fleeing the scene.
  • Getting Our Share Of The National Development Pie:
    As the unprecedented building of the nation continues, San Ignacio and Santa Elena are getting its fair share of the national development pie. A new cemented round-about is now in full operation at the junction of the George Price Highway and La Loma Luz Boulevard in Santa Elena. We can hardly remember what the area looked like prior to this major improvement. The entire length of La Loma Boulevard is properly paved complete with cemented sidewalks on both sides. Steel light poles with underground wiring have replaced those old and leaning wooden lamp posts with their spider web of crisscrossing overhead high tension electrical cables that once dangerously hung overhead along La Loma Luz Boulevard. Construction is now underway for the first ever two lane bridge across the Macal River connecting La Loma Luz Boulevard in Santa Elena to Joseph Andrews Drive in San Ignacio. A new roadway has been constructed through the Golden Orange orchard linking the new bridge with Joseph Andrews Drive.
    By Leonides Sanchez, Punta Gorda, Toledo. The domestication of a people and how can we turn this dilemma around: In town where I live there are several cats around my house and yet I don’t really own none. What I have observed is that while I am aware of the natural skills of a cat to be able to feed itself by hunting, they prefer to resort to begging and eventual stealing your food. I brought this up because our people are in a similar situation. The human being was gifted with a brain to be able to think and skills to be able to survive and overcome obstacles but somewhere along the way domestication interfered with the natural process. Now instead of our people resorting to their natural skills to do the feed themselves, they chose instead to resort to begging and eventually deprive others. This is a real situation. My question now is how do we turn this around so that our people can regain back their natural instincts to do for themselves? I believe that a new kind of education has to be introduced to the children.
  • Rotary Club is Refurbishing Park in Santa Elena:
    The Rotary Club of San Ignacio is planning ahead for the traffic on the by-pass coming to San Ignacio soon. Just a short block away from the new traffic circle in front of the La Loma Luz SDA Hospital,there is a community park sponsored by the Rotary Club. Club members raised concerns about the safety of children and families using the park since there will be a great deal more traffic on the Loma Luz Boulevard. The long term goal of the Club is to give the park a new look and upgrade the play equipment and features. The first step for the makeover of the park was safety. The park now has a sturdy chain link fencing around three sides of the area. This will keep children away from the busy highway of the future. This effort was funded by money for the Rotary District. The Belize Fence company gave the Club a very helpful discount on the fencing material and the Rotoract Club of San Ignacio members participated in put the fence in place.
  • Office of the Prime Minister Responds to Attacks on Justice Awich:
    The Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) has noted with concern the continued attacks by some lawyers on Justice of Appeal Mr. Samuel Awich. These attacks, using the Belize Bar Association Resolution as their springboard, are contemptuous and contemptible. They seek to scandalize the Belize Court of Appeal by alleging bias on the part of a member of that court, and may well be actionable by the Director of Public Prosecutions. Indeed, even from the English common law, it is considered contempt to “prejudice mankind [by speech or writing] in favour of or against a party before the case is heard” and the same principle is reflected in the laws of Belize where it is stated to be an offence to write or do anything “with intent to excite any popular prejudice for or against any party to [court] proceedings.”
  • Mother, Daughter and Son On Dishonesty Charge:
    A 16 year old boy was today remanded to prison on burglary and handling stolen goods charges. San Ignacio police reports that at around 10:00 am on Wednesday, June 25, Esperanza Village resident Maybelline Flores visited the police station in San Ignacio where she reported that her house was burglarized two days earlier. The complainant informed that between 12:30 pm and 3:00 pm on Monday, June 23 someone entered her house as a trespasser and stole there from a black Nikon brand digital camera with serial number 4234359 along with an extra lens and battery charger.
    The lack of opportunity for the youth of Belize has been recognized for quite a while, yet results from efforts to deal with this problem are struggling and lack support. Whilst the economy of Belize shows little capacity to offer much, sport has an almost inexhaustible ability to bridge the gap between education and employment. In fact, sport can and frequently does open doors to successful careers, for those who grasp what’s on offer. * Guided and directed youth can have significant impact on the success of communities, as well as on the future of the youth themselves * Using sport, as the basis for engaging with youth at community level, is a recognized model for promoting healthy lifestyle and producing successful adults and leaders of the future.
  • Sickle-Cell Anaemia:
    Sickle-cell disease (SCD), or sickle-cell anaemia (SCA) or drepanocytosis, is a hereditary blood disorder, characterized by red blood cells that assume an abnormal, rigid, sickle shape. Sickling decreases the cells' flexibility and results in a risk of various life-threatening complications. This sickling occurs because of a mutation in the haemoglobin gene. Individuals with one copy of the mutant gene produce a mixture of both normal and abnormal haemoglobin. This is an example of incomplete dominance. Sickle-cell disease may lead to various acute and chronic complications, several of which have a high mortality rate.
  • Public Advisory on Use of Specific Health Products:
    The Ministry of Health has received a public notification from the Unites States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), through the International Health Regulations of the World Health Organization, on health products that consumers are advised NOT to purchase. Consumers are advised not to purchase or use the following products that are promoted and sold for weight loss on websites or in retail stores: Dr. Ming’s Chinese Capsule, 7 Days Herbal Slim, Sliming Diet Berry Plus, Asset Extreme, SlimEasy Herbs Capsule and Meizitang Citrus.
  • Luis Suarez bite: Uruguay striker banned for four months:
    Uruguay striker Luis Suarez has been suspended from all football-related activity for four months for biting Italy defender Giorgio Chiellini. In addition, the Liverpool player, 27, has been banned for nine international matches, ruling him out of the rest of the 2014 Fifa World Cup. He will also miss the first nine games of the Premier League season. Uruguay say they will appeal, calling it an "excessive decision" for which "there was not enough evidence". Uruguay Football Association president Wilmar Valdez added: "I have seen more aggressive incidents recently.
  • Mexican Tijuana Cartel Boss Sanchez Arellano 'Captured':
    The Arellano Felix clan is one of the most feared criminal families in Mexico The Mexican army says it has captured the leader of the once-powerful Tijuana cartel, Luis Fernando Sanchez Arellano. In the 1990s, the cartel controlled much of the drugs flow from the northern Mexican city of Tijuana to the United States. But it was dealt a severe blow after the arrest of four of the brothers leading it and the killing of a fifth. Luis Fernando Sanchez Arellano is the nephew of the Arellano Felix brothers who originally founded the cartel. An army official said Mr Sanchez Arellano was captured on Monday afternoon shortly after the Mexican football team reached the last 16 of the Fifa World Cup by beating Croatia.
  • No Arrest In Venus Burglary:
    Five days later, almost four thousand dollars worth of items stolen, three persons interviewed, Zero arrests made. San Ignacio police informed of the receipt of a burglary report from Teresita Silva Johnson proprietor of Venus Store located at #6 Hudson Street in San Ignacio. The complainant informed that the store was secured at 9:00 pm on Saturday, June 21 and that upon checking at around 5:30 am the following day, the store was found to have been burglarized. Entry was gained through an opening pryed into the metal shutter attached to the front entrance.
  • STAR Humor
  • Your Weekly Horoscope and Lucky Numbers
  • Letters to the Editor
  • Public Notices

International Sourcesizz

Belize true paradise for outdoors enthusiasts
HOPKINS VILLAGE, Belize - Permit, bonefish and tarpon beckoned from mangrove-flocked cays dotting glistening saltwater flats, but our bountiful reward had nothing to do with recompense gained via measured swings of a fly rod. In reality, the true treasures of this small country nestled below the Yucatán Peninsula in Central America are its people, culture and distinct places, including some of the most diverse ecosystems in the world featuring an abundance of amazing species. My new bride, Michelle, and I spent our honeymoon based out of a private residence on what certainly was a quiet and splendid beach. But getting off the beaten path provided so much more to marvel at, allowing us to partake in activities we otherwise never would have enjoyed. It sounds cliché, but there literally is something for everyone, especially if you enjoy outdoors pursuits, including all-day treks involving multiple stops or shorter journeys spanning a couple of hours. The saltwater locales, protected by one of the world’s longest coral barrier reef systems, not only are gorgeous but also teem with a grand amount of angling targets. In addition to the shallow-water species above, there also are offshore trips for marlin, sailfish, wahoo, mahi mahi, sharks and more. The rates also are more reasonable than many typical blue-water trips out of any Texas port.


Video: Belize April 2014, 6min.
Compilation of footage from diving in Belize April 2014. Sites were Glovers Reef, Gladden Spit, and Lighthouse Reef. Filmed with a 5dmkiii in a Nauticam housing - Canon 16-35mm wide angle lens. All footage filmed in natural light. Diving services provided by Hamanasi Resort.

Video: Belize: termites, 2min.
Eat em up! Yum!

June 29, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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

Photo exhibit showcase San Pedro fishing history
On display are old photos of the founders of the Caribeña Producers Cooperative and some of the staff members. Also pictured are well known fishermen on the island, some of whom are deceased, and even stages of development in San Pedro that are tied with the fishing trade. Of particular interest is perhaps the first few photographs of an airplane on the island in the late 1940’s. The seaplane was used to transport conch and lobster from San Pedro to Miami, USA and was referred to as “Catalina” by the locals back in the 1940’s. Catalina was a type of seaplane used in World War II by the US military.

Schools across the Island hold Graduation Ceremonies
Four island primary schools and three preschool held graduation ceremonies over the past weekend. First up to celebrate 2014 Commencement Exercise was New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School who held their ceremonies on Thursday, June 19th at the school’s campus. The ceremony was held under the theme “God’s love and education are our treasures”. Giving […]

Island Cup Tournament set to begin
Football teams on Ambergris Caye are being invited to be a part of the first ever Island Cup Tournament. The competition is open to male football teams in San Pedro Town and they will be competing over the course of several weeks for cash prizes, trophies and medals. Local coordinator of the tournament, Ernildo Jones […]

The Belize Airport Authority has new board of directors
The Belize Airport Authority (BAA) has a new board of directors after it was dismantled six months ago following a major scandal. Even though no official announcement was made by the Government of Belize (GOB), The San Pedro Sun can confirm that the new board has been meeting, and that two of the new board […]

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Tourism Eco Camp Promo
The Cayo Tour Guide Association has released an epic promo for their upcoming Summer Tourism Eco Camp. It shows a little from the different places they'll be taking the students. Black Rock Lodge, Belize Botanic Gardens, Chechem Ha, and Xunantunich are all on there. You can still get raffle tickets and help out. Thanks, CTGA! "Sure enough, here we are. It is amazing the level of energy needed to do the logistics for the camp. First of all, we needed the finance and after a few letters were sent out to the local business community, places like Bancaneaux, Turtle Inn, Cahal Pech Resort and Banyan Bay Villas contacted us willing to help. They gave us lodging for 2 nights for 4 persons, so raffle tickets were done. Our second raffle is still available for purchase for $5.00 a chance, for which the single prize is 2 nights at Cahal Pech Resort and 2 nights at Banyan Bay Villas, both are for 4 four persons. "

The Reporter

Man shot
Information reaching the Weekend Reporter Online is that a man was shot at around 5:30 on Saturday evening in Belize City. Unconfirmed reports are that the victim, Malcolm Wagner, was shot to the back in the Saint Martin de Porres area of Belize City.

Luke Palacio says ROC will address national concerns
The Rod of Correction (ROC) comprised of representation from a cross-section of the various unions and social partners, was present at Thursday’s court proceeding of former government minister, Elvin Penner. President of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize, Luke Palacio, said that ROC has a number of concerns and the BNTU, Belize National Teachers Union, of which Palacio is also the president, had called for a thorough investigation of the passport/visa scandal. Palacio explained to reporters that ROC feels the government has been disrespectful. “This organization was born out of the fact that a number of our civil society organizations are experiencing the same thing that COLA is experiencing”, he said. “The matter of the disrespect and abuse that continues to happen, we are saying that yes, we are beginning a movement that has no political partisan act that has to do with national issues,” he continued.

Police suspect foul play in man’s death
Belize City police are investigating the sudden death of a man whose corpse was discovered on Saturday morning on Orange Street. Police suspect that foul play was involved in the death of Samuel Miguel, 22.

Corruption charges filed against Argentine VP
Amado Boudou, Argentine Vice President faces up to six years in jail following charges of corruption. Mr. Boudou is accused of using his influence when he was Argentina’s economy minister to ensure that a contract to print that country’s currency was given to a company he controlled. Earlier this month, a judge questioned him for more than seven hours in a private session. The judge ruled that Mr. Boudou would remain free while awaiting trial. In addition to Mr. Boudou, Argentine authorities have charged five other suspects. Mr. Boudou has denied any wrongdoing and has rejected demands to step down.

Patrick JonesPJ

Participants of road safety training get certification
A graduation was held on Friday afternoon for participants of capacity building training course on road safety. Nineteen young men and women from across the country completed the Youth for Road Safety capacity building workshop and received their certificates during ceremonies held at the George Price Center for Peace and Development in Belmopan. Among the dignitaries present at the graduation were Minister of Education Patrick Faber and Caribbean Development Bank representative Glen McCravel.

Body found in open lot in Belize City
Police in Belize City are investigating the death of a man whose body was found early this morning. It is not certain if foul play was involved. The body of the man was found in an open lot just off Orange Street, across from Lin Chi Wholesale, formerly Xtra House, around 6 o’clock this morning. The name of the person has not yet been released by authorities and a police investigation continues.


From Ambergris Caye to Placencia the EASY WAY For Day One of Placencia’s Lobsterfest
If you follow on Facebook, you are probably sick of my excitement about this weekend but to me, it’s exciting. Belize’s two oldest Lobster Festivals, Placencia and Caye Caulker – opposite sides of the country, in one weekend. And, if you’ve follow my blog, you’ve seen how I usually make this north to south Belize journey. Just like I did it about a month ago. Water taxi from San Pedro to Belize City and then a 5 hour bus ride south…and so on and so forth.

A Life On The Beach In Corozal, Belize
Kyler and Gerard Cordts relish living in the home they designed for themselves on their personal beach. Their expansive living room affords a view of the sparkling, tranquil bay. Just a few steps beyond their doors they can enjoy a quick dip…or take their Hobie Cat out for a spin. “We rarely see a boat go by. We have total privacy here,” says Kyler. Before moving to Belize, the Cordts lived quite a different lifestyle in New York and New Jersey. They owned several successful clothing boutiques in New York and were involved in the local Greenwich Village scene. Their historic home, in nearby New Jersey, was a 15-minute commute from work. They were engrossed in the hustle and bustle of a metropolitan lifestyle, surrounded by 9 million others. Over time, the cost of the high-end Manhattan lifestyle took a toll. With four daughters, the college and wedding bills eroded the Cordts’ nest egg. Kyler says, “We realized that we couldn’t afford to maintain that same lifestyle once we retired.”

International Sourcesizz

Mayans and Mennonites
One of my favorite experiences while traveling through Campeche was seeing the many Mennonite communities along the way. As a German I was curious. Persecuted for their beliefs, the Mennonites had left the German speaking parts of central Europe hundreds of years ago. And up until now, I had never encountered them. Walking through a local market, I found myself being transported back in time. In the sea of short Mayans, there were tall, pale women in dark floral-print dresses and men in black overalls, plaid shirts and straw hats. It was surreal. Although I couldn’t stop staring at them, I was mostly curious about their Germanic language. After all, they were my people (or so I thought). A few days later, we finally had a chance to talk to them. While visiting an archaeological site near Hopelchen, we met a young Mennonite couple who had just emigrated from Ontario. In fact, many of the 100,000 Mennonites in Mexico today are descendents from Canadian Mennonites who started settling in Mexico in the 1920s. Surprisingly, the couple opened up to us quickly. They had obviously experienced major culture shock and were not yet “trained” in handling corrupt Mexican officials. In addition, they had to deal with the not-so-friendly-welcome by the locals who fear that Mennonites are buying up all the land.


Video: Tourism Eco Camp, 1min.
Cayo tour guide association presents Tourism Eco Camp.

Video: Belize - Reef Puppies, 4min.

Video: The Prisoner Belize pt 1, 9min.
Belize Central Prison

Video: The Prisoner Belize pt 2, 16min.
Belize Central Prison

Video: The Prisoner Belize pt 3, 15min.
Belize Central Prison

Video: Belize April 2014, 6min.
Compilation of footage from diving in Belize April 2014. Sites were Glovers Reef, Gladden Spit, and Lighthouse Reef. Filmed with a 5dmkiii in a Nauticam housing - Canon 16-35mm wide angle lens. All footage filmed in natural light. Diving services provided by Hamanasi Resort.

Video: Belize & Guatemala 2014 | Caye Caulker | Flores | San Ignacio, 4min.
A short and sweet trip to Belize and Guatemala with Gladys. May 2014.

Beautiful driving in Belize, 18min.
Driving from Belmopan to Placencia Village - A Beautiful way to look at Belize is by Driving. Driving from Belmopan to Placencia take pass many Villages, Rivers and streams. This video capture made 40% of what you will see on your drive. As you get closer to placencia you will notice to Banana and orange fields.

Video: Hol Chan reserve/Shark Ray Alley-Belize, 3min.

Video: Caye Caulker, Belize, Rommy, Born To Be Wild!, 6min.
Rommy, Rainy, James, Allie, Scott & The Barrier Reefers Band 2014, Born To Be Wild!

Video: 061814 Belize, 53min.
Cruise ship expedition from the Carnival Legend

Video: Belize Caves, 3min.
Cave tubing, large group

June 28, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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

San Pedro welcomes New Deputy of Police Henry Jemmott
Senior Officer Henry Jemmott is the new Deputy of the Belize Police Department Coastal executive Unit, in charge of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker. Deputy Jemmott has 16 years of experience and is looking forward to working with the community to improve the islands’ safety. Originally from Dangriga, Deputy Jemmott most recently served three years at the Violent Criminals Apprehension Program (VCAP) in the Investigation Branch of the Belize City Police Unit. He also has 13 years of working in the special patrol unit. Deputy Jemmott promotes exceptional customer relations and believes all officers should behave with discipline, honor and respect. “I want to change the image and the present perception between the community and the police. We need to inform the public that the police are here to render a service and have the community reassured that San Pedro will be a safer place for the residence and visitors,” said Deputy Jemmott.

Costa Maya Festival® presents Miss Belize!
The Costa Maya Festival organization is pleased to announce that Belize’s representative for the Reina de la Costa Maya pageant is the lovely Grisel Rosseli Carballo. Grisel is from the northern district of Orange Walk, and is no stranger to pageantry. In 2011 she was the first runner-up in Miss Orange Walk, and followed it up with a triumphant win of the title of Miss Diosa Maya 2013. The 22-year-old stands at 5’ 4” and has burgundy hair and brown eyes. She is an enthusiastic community activist, and is presently the Director of Public Relations for the Rotaract Club in Orange Walk Town. She loves playing football, enjoys modeling and she champions causes aimed at improving the lives of women and children. She is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management at the University of Belize, and on the side, hosts “La Voz Kareoke” on the local television network in her hometown.

New US Ambassador Carlos Moreno present credentials to Belize’s Governor General
The new United States of America (US or USA) ambassador to Belize His Excellency Carlos Moreno has presented his letters of credence to the Governor General of Belize His Excellency Sir Colville Young. The US diplomat arrived in the country accompanied with his wife Christine on Saturday June 21st from California, US and on Tuesday June 24th he presented his credentials. President Barrack Obama appointed Moreno as the US Ambassador to Belize last year but it took the US Senate ten months to approve his appointment. “The Government of the United States and the Government of Belize have an outstanding, longstanding relationship. I look forward to improving that relationship in so many ways,” said Ambassador Moreno in an interview with a local television station.

Boat capsizes after captain rescues two tourists
Authorities on Ambergris Caye have confirmed a boat accident that occurred on Tuesday June 24th in the Hol Chan Marine Reserve. The incident occurred around 12:10PM when boat captain Nisan Zuniga of San Pedro Town was trying to rescue two drifting tourists. According to several reports, Zuniga was out with family members when he noticed two Caucasians who seemed to be in distress and losing the battle against strong currents and drifting into the main channel. Without hesitation, Zuniga left his family in shallow waters inside the reef section of the reserve and proceeded to rescue the two drifting tourists. Authorities say that the boat flipped over outside the reef when a large wave hit the vessel, sending Zuniga and the two rescued tourists into the water.

Congratulations to Britany Ysaguirre, Miss Caye Caulker Lobster Fest 2014-15!!!

Ambergris Today

Miss Belize Contestant Announced for Costa Maya Festival
Grisel Roselli Carballo has been chosen to represent our beautiful Belize as Miss Belize Costa Maya at the Reina de la Costa Maya Pageant that will be taking place during the International Costa Maya Festival in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize on Thursday, August 7, 2014. At 22 years of age and standing 5’ 4” tall, Grisel Carballo has brown eyes and burgundy red hair. She has an Associates Degree in Economics and is currently pursuing her Bachelors in Business Management at the University of Belize; she loves dancing, working with children, doing community service and is a show host. Grisel was 1st Runner Up at the Miss Orange Walk 2011 pageant and won the title of Miss Diosa Maya 2013 pageant held in Merida, Yucatan. Grisel says that she will proudly represent her beautiful country at the International Costa Maya Festival.

Social Security Grants SP Police Two Motorcycles
Through grant funding provided the Social Security Board of Belize, the San Pedro Police Department was able to purchase two new motorcycles and a power washer. A special appreciation ceremony was held on Thursday, June 26, 2014, by the Police Department for the Social Security Board. Officer in Charge of the SP Police handed out certificates of appreciation to Ariel Mitchell and the Social Security Board for the kind donation and thanked Mr. Steve Perera for his assistance in the process of receiving the grant. OC Castellanos stated that the motorcycles will be used to patrol Northern Ambergris Caye and areas with the highest crime rate on the island. On hand to accept the certificates on behalf of the Social Security Board was Mrs. Miriam Requena.

Belize Conch Season to Close July 1st
This is your last weekend to enjoy those delicious conch ceviche, conch soup, conch fritters and all those delicious conch dishes as the conch season is set to close for three months effective Tuesday, July 1, 2014. The Belize Fisheries Department issued a press release informing the general public that the conch season will be closed effective July 1st and it will remain closed until midnight of September 30th. As a reminder, we note that failure to comply with the close season will result in prosecution in court under Regulation 3 (1) (b) of the Fisheries Regulations, Chapter 210 of the Subsidiary Laws of Belize R.E. 2003.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

6th Annual Tres Pescados Slam Tournament Announced for July in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye

Our Lady of Guadalupe Graduation
Congratulations to the graduating class from Our Lady of Guadelupe primary!

Canadian corporal deploys to Belize for dental mission
Entering the makeshift dental clinic in Belize City, Belize, you’ll notice a swarm of U.S. Air Force dentists and dental technicians busying around the clinic at a dizzying pace. You’d see the effortless teamwork and think that all of these professionals must’ve been training together for months to be able to keep up with the workload of seeing 700 patients in two weeks. But, you would be wrong. Only upon close examination would you would realize that a few of the uniforms are not like the other and that they just joined the dental team eleven short days ago. Canadian Army Cpl. Glenn Keefe, a dental training support corporal at Canadian Forces Health Services Training Center, is in country working side-by-side with his U.S. and Belizean counterparts to provide dental care to patients in Belize in support of the U.S. Southern Command sponsored New Horizons exercise.

Dental resident hones skills while deployed to Belize
Following in her father’s footsteps, she met with an Air Force recruiter while she was in dental school and joined the military. Now, during her first year as an Air Force dentist she’s deployed to Belize. U.S. Air Force Capt. (Dr.) Marie Cross, a dentist in the Advanced Educational and General Dentistry Program from the 99th Dental Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, is in the country supporting the U.S. Southern Command-sponsored New Horizons exercise. A significant part of New Horizons exercise is the collection of Medical Readiness Training Exercises, better known as MEDRETES, which are designed to provide humanitarian assistance and medical care to people in the local area while helping improve the skills of U.S. military medical forces and those of military medical professionals of the host nation.

Chiclero Park Clean Up
CACHE is having a clean up at the Chiclero Park this Sunday. In related news, they are asking for proposals for the CACHE Cafe. "CACHE is not limited to our Centennial Park, we want to beautify the whole community so join us this Sunday morning at the Chiclero Park!!!!!"

In Bloom at Boat Wharf
In Bloom will be playing at the Boat Wharf tonight. Emendo will also be there. "Come out for a great night of music courtesy of In Bloom and Emendo at Boat Wharf Rest. & Bar located on the ground floor of the Manzanero Building In San Ignacio Town (to the left of Heritage Bank!!!)"

D Catch Lobster Fest
No need to travel for Lobster Fest. Celebrate tonight in the Cayo Welcome Center at D Catch. Carlos Landero will be playing. "D Catch presents to you the First Ever Mini Lobster Fest in San Ignacio. Taking place tomorrow June 28th, 2014. We will be having a Lobster Cookout with Music and Cold Drinks! Later in the night we will be having Carlos Landeros and his Band on stage at the Welcome Center. Get your Lobster on at D Catch tomorrow. Gona Be Great! U can't afford to miss this!"

San Ignacio Online Map
There's a new website in Cayo, and they have a convenient online map for all to use. It loads a little slowly, but the map is there quickly. Thanks, Artemis Glass, for the great map. "The San Ignacio Online Map is an effort to allow tourists, as well as locals and Belizeans, to find their way around San Ignacio Town, in the Cayo District, Belize. The map pinpoints Prime Businesses of San Ignacio, with essential information on how to reach any of these."

Channel 7

Laverne "Antichrist" Gets A Reduced Sentence
Lavern "Anti-Christ" Longsworth, who was serving life in prison for killing her common-law husband, will only spend about 4 and a half more years in jail. That's the decision that the Court of Appeal handed down this afternoon when it announced that her conviction in the Supreme Court for murder will be reduced to manslaughter, and her life sentence will be quashed. As we reported, her attorneys submitted to the court that she should be afforded a defence of diminished responsibility because she was suffering from battered women's syndrome after years of physical abuse by the late David White. They were able to show with professional reports from a forensic psychiatrist that she was under duress when she doused him in kerosene and lit him on fire in July of 2010. It's an important victory for Longsworth, and we spoke with her attorney outside of court about it:

Lawmen Will Be Re-tried for Landing Drug Plane
And there was another big decision coming out of the Court of Appeal just about an hour and a half before news time. As we told you on Tuesday, the Director of Public Prosecution made an application to the Court of Appeal. She's trying to get the 5 law men accused of facilitating the landing of the drug plane on the Southern Highway to be re-tried. As we told you, the 5 lawmen Police Corporal Renel Grant, Corporal Nelson Middleton, Sergeant Lawrence Humes, Customs Boatman Harold Usher, Sergeant Jacinto Roches, and civilian Victor Logan were all charged of abetment to commit a crime. The accusation was that they facilitated the landing of the plane, which resulted in the biggest drug cargo on record to enter Belizean soil, 5,704 pound of compressed cocaine.

UDP and PUP Take Hits From Immigration Scandal
The fallout from the Immigration scandal is affecting both major mass parties. On the UDP side, we are reliably informed that two time councilor Eric Chang has been told by party higher-up he will not be allowed to run because of his association, whether real or perceived with the Citizen Kim debacle. In 2008, Chang became the first Taiwanese Belizean to gain elected office – and he has consistently performed at the top of the polls.

Was Kimmie's Club Questionable?
Tonight, questions persist about the massive blaze at Kimmie’s Club on Wednesday morning. It gutted three buildings, and cost the life of 21 year old mother of three Jacqueline Arteaga – who was living in an apartment atop Kimmie’s club.

Okeke Smashes TV Ramos Sculpture
In March we told you about Stephen Okeke's unveiling of his TV Ramos Sculpture. He said it was his homage to the cultural icon and founder of Garifuna Settlement Day. The sculpture was dazzling, but it lacked one thing: sponsorship: meaning Okeke had to get forty thousand dollars before it was placed in Dangriga. We predicted at the time, that it would end badly - because that's what always happens on these artistic venture projects that Okeke embarks on. And sure enough one month ago, he angrily put it up for sale to anyone, and then last week some supporters said they had a rescue plan. But it all mounted to naught…yet, still, we never expected what we saw on Facebook this morning: Okeke destroyed the sculpture! Smashed it to bits!

Leptospirosis A Real And Active Threat
Last night we told you about the Chikungunya virus, known as Chik-V – and all that’s being done to minimize its impact in Belize. But one illness that’s been with us, is Leptospirosis. That’s a bacterial infection caused – in the urban setting - by exposure to rat droppings and rat urine. Currently there’s one serious case in Belize City – and the Director of Health services discussed it yesterday:..

The Immigration Enterprise and the Passport Product
On Wednesday, activist group COLA released the Auditor General’s preliminary report into irregularities at the Immigration Department. And in our first segment we told you how its disclosure has already caused tremors in the PUP.

Deon Bruce Gets A Break
Wanted Fugitive Deon Bruce, who the US Government is seeking for grand jury charges of murder and attempted murder, has been taking major losses in his fight to resist his extradition to the United States.

Prosecutor Remanded For Weapon
33 year old Joseph Nunez, a prosecutor at traffic court, and an employee of Belize City Council, is at prison tonight, after he was taken to court for a firearm offence Early on Sunday morning, Nunez was with a friend who works as a security guard for Elite Security and when the friend got into an argument with his girlfriend, Nunez suggested to him to hand over the licensed 9 millimeter pistol to avoid getting into trouble. Nunez received the firearm and got on his motorcycle and drove off. He hit a bit of bad luck when a police mobile spotted him. The rear lights for his motorcycle weren't working and Nunez was not wearing a helmet. The police vehicle began to pursue him and caught up with him on West Collet Canal. Nunez then declared that he had the firearm.

Harvest Picks Rice
For the past two years, we’ve been showing you the unusual events organized by Harvest 4 Kids. Alex Perez gets farmers to commit huge tracts of lands, and gets sponsors to pay for corn to be planted and fertilized, and then gets urban youth involved to give them the farming experience. This year, it was rice and he went to Blue Creek to plant 20 acres. It was harvested on Wednesday and he told us that they got a bumper crop:..

"Legal Hustling" Stopped On Sidewalk By City
This morning there was a commotion in front of the Novelo’s Bus Terminal – after special constables shut down business for street side vendors selling from off the sidewalk. 7News was quickly called to the scene and we were told that the officers roughly ordered them off the sidewalk. This means no income for these sellers who say that what they call a “legal hustle” is their only means of income. And even if it is illegal, they want someone to help them.

Alleged Gun Thieves got Beaten Up By Cops
Two young men 28 year old Phillip Samuels and 19 year-old Aymon Flores, who allegedly stole a firearm from Carl Butler, were charged with robbery when they appeared today before Magistrate Herbert Panton. The crime took place on Wednesday. Butler reported to the police that two persons accosted him and stole his 9 millimeter pistol that had 8 rounds of ammunition in its magazine. Samuels said in court that he and Flores were taken to mile 4 on George Price Highway and they were beaten by the police. Samuels said that they beat him until he lost consciousness and some of his ribs are broken.

Cops Not Horsing Around
Have you ever seen a horse under arrest? Well we hadn't either, but we came upon a scene yesterday that sure looked like it! We saw a police mobile on Mahogany Street leading a horse down the street. The horse didn't have on...what would you call it?....hoof-cuffs - but he was tied to the pickup. But don't worry, he wasn't under equine arrest; this horse had been stolen by some children who were trying to sell it. Police rescued the horse, which had a few cuts to return to his owner.

Soca Queen Destra Does Belize Again
The carnival season has officially opened and what better way to begin celebration than with a soca concert. Trinidadian Soca superstar Destra will be hitting the stage at the ITVET tomorrow night alongside Belize's very own soca queen, Ernestine Carballo. Today 7news caught up with Destra at the Radisson - where she told us it is her second time in Belize and she is ready to mash it up again. Doors open at 10pm.

Increasing HIV Awareness
Today, the National AIDS Commission took its mission downtown; they offered free and rapid HIV tests to the public in the open air.

The Coming of Cayo Boxers
The renovated BTL Park is a hub for all kinds of public engagements, form movies to concerts - and tonight they are putting on a boxing show. A contingent of boxers from the Lion's Den in Cayo are in the city tonight - and we found at YWCA getting ready for the evening of bouts:.. The night of boxing will be starting shortly.

Tonight's I am Belize Teacher profile is about Dr. Lorna McKay - the principal of Gwen Liz High School. Tonight she tells the profile how she entered the teaching profession, and became a Doctor:..

How to Make It To 96 And Still Have Money In the Bank
Belmopan resident Alfred Pandy got a gesture of appreciation from Scotia Bank yesterday when they threw him a party for his upcoming 96th Birthday. Pandy's story is that he visits the bank several times a month, and because he walks without any assistance, and unaccompanied the employees were pleasantly surprised to find out that he's their oldest customer who does business with them regularly. The bank invited the media to celebrate Pandy's party with him, and we stopped in to get a few tips on staying active - and still having money in the bank - going on a century. Here's what he told us:

Channel 5

Court of Appeal determines the fate of Lavern “Anti Christ” Longsworth
Four years after being behind bars for dousing and setting her husband on fire, Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth heard her fate. This afternoon, she smiled on the docks as President of [...]

6 men charged with the largest drug bust get a retrial
One year and a half after the charge of facilitating the landing of a drug plane was struck out against six men by Justice Denis Hanomansingh, the Court of Appeal [...]

Deon Bruce granted stay of execution from being extradited
The extradition appeal of Deon Bruce was also before the Court of Appeal. Back in January of this year, Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith granted an extradition request on twenty-eight [...]

Cause of horrific and tragic fire still unknown
It’s been two days since the horrific fire on Newtown Barracks gutted two massive wooden buildings and tragically ended the life of twenty-one year old Jacqueline Arteaga. After days of [...]

Court prosecutor finds himself behind bars for a good deed
An ex-police officer, who is prosecuting cases for the municipal court, finds himself in big trouble with the law after being busted with a firearm loaded with live rounds. While [...]

Auditor General Report says Immigration Director obstructed investigation
On Thursday night, we took at brief look at the twenty-seven page interim Auditor-General’s report. The document chronicles an attempt at an intensive investigation into the corruption at the Immigration [...]

Martin Cal taken off P.U.P. slate after name surfaces in Auditor General’s Report
The Auditor-General’s report has had no visible repercussions on the man at the front and centre of the scandal, former Minister of State Elvin Penner. But it has had serious [...]

Darell Carter in court for failure to make Social Security contributions
  Businessman Darrell Carter was back in court today. This time he was there to answer to a single charge of failure to make Social Security contributions payments in respect [...]

Late evening robbery – Mark Anthony Pelayo is nabbed
There are details available of a late evening robbery on Thursday.  Three persons were robbed after five o’clock in the evening of their cell phones and keys by an armed [...]

Tourist dies on diving trip at the Blue Hole Natural Monument
A tourist collapsed and died while on a diving trip at the Blue Hole Natural Monument. The U.S. visitor, Larry Smith, was along a group of nineteen tourists who left [...]

The winning theme of the National Celebrations
One of the events by which you can tell that the national celebrations are upon us, is the selection of the theme that guides the festivities. This year to mark [...]

A Labor Education Seminar
There is no shortage of disputes in the work place that involve employers and employees. This morning at the auditorium of the Belize Elementary School, representatives of the private sector [...]

B.D.F. volunteers join US Army for jungle warfare training
A battalion of four hundred and fifteen volunteer soldiers attached to the Belize Defense Force and the Louisiana National Guard is currently on an annual military training exercise in the [...]

Mayan woman from the south is called to the Bar
A historic ceremony was held at court today when Monica Coc was called to the bar. Coc is from the Toledo District and is the first Mayan woman to ever [...]

54 young men graduate from the Southside Youth Success Project
A graduating class of fifty-four young men has successfully completed the Southside Youth Success Project.  During a brief commencement exercise on Wednesday afternoon at the UWI Auditorium, the Belize Police [...]

Police officer makes clarification to story
We have been contacted by the Attorney for Sergeant Octavino Victorin of the San Ignacio Formation in respect of a story aired earlier this week. Sergeant Victorin is requesting that [...]

F.F.B. promises to pay players by July fifteenth
On Thursday, we showed you the results of a two-million dollar facelift on the football field and facilities at the F.F.B. headquarters in Belmopan. The works are scheduled to be [...]


Standard Four Student Goes Missing
A standard 4 student from Louisiana Gov’t School has been reported missing. According to her aunt, Maria Lucia Carrillo, her 15 year old niece, Luz Clarita Carrillo went missing on Tuesday morning. Fearing the worst, Lucia reached out to us for help. Maria Lucia Carrillo – Aunt of missing teen “I send her to school on Tuesday at 8:15am and she said she was going to school and since then I haven’t heard of her.” Maria Novelo – Reporter “Is she a person to do this all the time, or is this the first time she ran away?” Maria Lucia Carrillo – Aunt of missing teen “She is doing it the first time but I feel she ran away because when I send her to school I rail up with her because I told her to do the domestic work and she doesn’t want to do anything and she not even help us doing the domestic work and I told her how is she going to learn and she is getting older an older and she got mad and I think that is why she ran away.”

Unemployment Rate Sees A Slight Dip
Yesterday the Statistical Institute of Belize held a press conference in Belize City where they released a number of findings including the Consumer Price Index and External Trade which we spoke to you about in last night’s newscast. What we did not touch basis on is the information released on the Labor Force Survey. The report shows that unemployment rate reduced slightly from 11.7 percent in April of 2013 to 11.1 percent in April this year. This means that as of April this year, there are approximately sixteen thousand seven hundred men and women who are unemployed. That’s six hundred and seventy five less unemployed persons compared to April of 2013 when 17,375 were jobless. According to the report, only the Belize District experienced a higher rate of unemployment in April this year when compared to the same month last year. The increase was due mostly to workers entering the labour force at a much faster rate than jobs were being created in the district. It is believed that the heightened construction activity in Belize City may have made many residents more hopeful about obtaining employment.

Minor Traffic Accident On Riverside Street
And closer to home on Riverside Street around 2:00pm today, a minor traffic mishap disrupted the flow of traffic on that stretch of road. The driver of a cargo truck was reversing when he backed up into this small white Camry which was behind him. Driver of the truck was advised of the offence since he did not have any rear view mirrors to notice the bystanders signalling him to stop. No one was hurt but the Camry suffered minor damages.

MOE Rectifies Uncommon Mistake And Awards Second Top Performer
Last week we reported on the story with Louisiana Gov’t School student Jose Arciga who was not initially included in the list of top ten performers for the Primary School Examinations issued but the Ministry Education earlier this month, despite getting 365 out of 400 points overall. This grade should have placed him fifth in country and as such a complaint was lodged by the administration of the school to the Ministry and soon it was rectified. He was recognized for his accomplishments yesterday in Belize City and was also present in today’s North awards ceremony. But while Minister of Education Patrick Faber has indicated that efforts have been made to lessen the errors, he also considers them not to be uncommon. But what does Arciga think? Today he shared his sentiments with reporter Victor Castillo.

Belize On High alert for Chikungunya Disease
A painful mosquito-borne virus called Chikungunya, which is common in Africa and Asia has advanced quickly throughout the Caribbean region in a span of several months, raising the prospect that a once-distant illness will become entrenched throughout the region including Belize. The closest suspected cases were confirmed in neighboring El Salvador. And as such, health officials have stepped up their prevention measures and heightened their preparedness. Today officials of the Ministry of health gave the media an update on the disease. Reporter Maria Novelo reports. Maria Novelo – Reporting Following the continued regional outbreak of the chikungunya or Chik-V virus, local health officials and personnel are on high alert here in Belize. While there are no known cases of Chik V in the country, neighbouring El Salvador has seen an emergence in suspected cases. Dr. Michael Pitts is Director of Health Services for the MOH.

Unity Is Strength With Harvest or Kids
Unity is strength; we’ve heard that chant before and however cliché, there is much truth to this. And there is no better example to prove it than the consorted efforts of farmers and missionaries who have worked together to give underprivileged children an opportunity to not only have fun but spend quality time with others their age in an annual camping experience. They are Belize Camping Experience and in an effort to ensure that the program is held every year, the organizers have been working with farmers to grow crops that are sold and all profits are directed to the program. This year, Belize Camping Experience worked with rice farmers and has harvested their product. Here is a look at the success of that initiative.

MOE Award Outstanding PSE Students Form The North
Yesterday the Ministry of Education hosted its annual awarding Ceremonies at the Biltmore Plaza in Belize City where students from across the country gathered to be recognized as the top students for this year’s PSE results. The Northern part of the country had representation among the top 25 students. At a forum today at the Corozal Community College Auditorium, 20 students from Both Corozal and Orange Walk were awarded for their exceptional performance in this year’s examinations. Reporter Victor Castillo was among the invited guests and filed the following report. Victor Castillo – Reporting Meet the top twenty primary school students whom after their dedication achieved the highest scores in the Primary School Examination for the Corozal and Orange Walk Districts. The smiles and excitement this morning were the most notable expression at the CCC Auditorium as each of the 20 student’s received an award from the Ministry of Education, Youth and Sports in recognition for their accomplishment.

Dates Set For The Closure Of 2013/2014 Crop Season
When plans were being made for the 2013/2014 crop season it was estimated that one million two hundred and seventy one thousand tons of cane would be delivered to the factory. That of amount of cane was expected to produce 130 thousand tons of sugar at a TCTS of 9.5. But the 2013/2014 crop season experienced a delay of two months to be exact due to an impasse on the negations of Bagasse between BSI/ASR and the BSCFA. With crop coming to an end the effect of that standoff is about to be felt as this year’s target will not be meet. A date has been set for the closure of crop, July 8th which is less than two weeks away. If the weather holds up BSI/ASR expects the factory to mill 1.2 million tons of cane. That’s just above last year’s amount of one million 78 thousand. But all is not good news.


Tourist Dies at Blue Hole Natural Monument
A tourist died while on a dive in Blue Hole Natural Monument. According to Marcus Alamina, Belizean Boat captain, Dive master and Tour Guide , Thursday morning at about 6:25 a.m., he and three other Dive masters accompanied by 19 tourists, left Ramón’s Village dock en route to the Blue...

Is Rawell Pelayo Still a Member of FFB Executive?
Who could forget the very stellar performance of Belize Jaguars in the Gold Cup Tournament last year, but what is also quite unforgettable is the very embarrassing arrest of Football Federation of Belize’s Vice President Rawell Pelayo. In July 2013 while travelling with the delegation, Rawell Pelayo was detained...

Belize Youth and Road Safety Capacity Building Project Graduates 19
The Belize Youth and Road Safety Capacity Building Project known as YOURS saw 19 young men and women graduate from the two weeks training program this afternoon at the George Price Center in Belmopan. The Program which is being jointly funded by the Caribbean Development Bank and the Government...

The Financial Woes of the Football Federation of Belize
In an interview with Ruperto Vicente yesterday he told Plus News that the current financial state of the federation does not permit them to pay off all their bills. However they should be getting monies from FIFA sometime soon and this will allow them to pay the National Team...

Traffic Prosecutor Charged with Unlicensed Firearm
Thirty-three year old Joseph Nunez, a prosecutor at traffic court, became an inmate of Belize Central Prison today when he appeared before Magistrate Herbert Panton and was arraigned on charges of kept firearm and ammunition without a gun license. Nunez’ plead was ‘not guilty’ to the charges.  He was...

Deon Bruce Given Stay of Execution
Deon Bruce remains under threat of being extradited to the United States on murder charges following a decision of the Supreme Court upholding that of Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith. However, he was given a reprieve today as Justice Courtney Abel granted a stay of execution so that the decision...

 Belmopan Infrastructure Work Continues
The second phase of the Belize Municipal Development Project is well underway as works are near completion at the Belmopan Civic Center. Apart from the Civic Center and parking lot, which will be occupied by the Tuesday and Friday Market Vendors,  phase two of the development project also entails...

It’s a Rice Harvest for the Kids!
Harvest for kids has become one of the largest summer camp programs in the country. To sponsor the large event the organizers embark on a harvest program hence the name Harvest for kids. Last year the Belize Camping Experience, BCE, after a good corn harvest, reached approximately 2,000 children...

Growing the Future Projects
Growing the Future Projects, a School Boost Program kicks of this summer. The program which has been operating since 2004 has now branched off to 6 different areas in the country. They are to function in Corozal, Orange Walk, Belize City, San Pedro, San Ignacio, and now in Belmopan....

Lavern Longsworth Sentence Reduced by Court of Appeal
Convicted murderer Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth has appealed her conviction, citing that at the time she killed her partner David White she was suffering the effects of battered woman’s syndrome. The Court of Appeal has accepted that defense and reduced her charge to manslaughter.  However, there was disagreement between Longsworth’s...

Six Men to be Retried on Drug Plane Case
The case of six men accused of aiding in the landing of an alleged drug plane on the Southern Highway in 2012 concluded in the Court of Appeal late this evening. The attorneys for the accused, Senior Counsels Hubert Elrington and Simeon Sampson and Anthony Sylvester, urged on the...

Darrell Carter in Tax Trouble Again
Businessman and former PUP politician Darrell Carter was charged with failure to make Social security Board contributions for the period February to May 2014 when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. Carter’s plead was “not guilty’ to the charge. His case was adjourned until August 12 for...


$11,150 in cash and personal items, including a gun, stolen
The Precinct 1 police of Belize City are on the lookout for a thief or thieves who burglarized the home of a woman, 35, of, Queen Charlotte Street, Belize City, sometime between 11:40 Friday night and [...]

Sandhill man remanded for threatening wife with shotgun
He allegedly caught his wife with another man in their home A Sandhill man was remanded to prison after he was arraigned on charges of aggravated assault with a firearm, threat of death and harm upon [...]

Attempted murder charge lands George McKenzie, Jr., 19, in prison
George McKenzie, Jr., the 19-year-old son of deceased gang leader George “Junie Balls” McKenzie, narrowly escaped being remanded to the Belize Central Prison in mid-April when police fingered him for a homicide despite his alibi, which [...]

3rd suspect in Canadian’s murder may face charges
2 suspects have been murdered; the other is in jail on a committal warrant The murder of Brian Townsend, a Canadian Adventist missionary who was residing in the Valley of Peace, last Christmas, was later coupled [...]

Police nab 2 young thieves
The thieves, 15 and 16, were running out of the store they had just robbed Two young thieves, 15 and 16, both of Belize City, are in police custody pending charges of aggravated robbery, handling stolen [...]

Robbery in Belmopan area – again!
The D-Mundo company of Belmopan is out of $547 in cash after their collector was robbed by a thief who punched him in the left side of the face and escaped with the company bag containing [...]

The murder case of Vinnie Garbutt, 21, adjourned to August 27
Vinnie Garbutt, 21, of the Kontiki area of Cayo, accused of kidnapping and killing his girlfriend, Kayla Burgess, 23, a student of the University of Belize who lived in Independence, was returned to his cell at [...]

Man remanded for burglarizing a police officer’s home
A Mahogany Heights resident was remanded into prison after he was arraigned on charges of burglary and use of threatening words when he appeared before newly appointed Magistrate, Herbert Panton, in his Court #3 this afternoon. [...]

Wilbert Carcamo, 24, released on $5,000 bail
Out-of-control driver allegedly beat victim with wheel iron Wilbert Carcamo, 24, a driver of Libertad, Corozal District, who was wanted on charges of aggravated assault and dangerous harm, has been released on a bail of $5,000 [...]

Santa Elena man busted with shotgun and cartridges
Rodel Guerra, 27, of Carmen Street, Santa Elena, has been remanded to the Belize Central Prison on charges of “kept firearm and ammunition without a gun license” after he was busted with a 16-gauge shotgun and [...]

Venus Photo and Records burglarized
The popular Venus Photo and Record Store, of Hudson Street in San Ignacio, was burglarized by thieves, who stole a quantity of electronic items and assorted jewelry, all to a total value of $4,909. The incident [...]

“Vanessa” refuses to press charges against thief
A thief who was shot by police after he robbed a cross-dresser on a Belmopan walkway in the area of Ambergris Avenue has been released from the Belmopan Hospital and from police custody after the transvestite [...]

Cane cutter, 60, fined and confined for drug and gun charges
August Pine Ridge resident, Matilde Ku, 60, a cane cutter, has been sentenced to 15 years imprisonment and fined $11,500 after being found guilty of drug trafficking and keeping an unlicensed firearm and ammunition. He was [...]

He was almost killed because he owed $2
Denver Stuart, 18, of Sandhill, is recovering at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital from head injuries after he was beaten with a piece of wood by a 16-year-old boy at about 3:30 Tuesday afternoon in the [...]

PG machete and knife fight
Two young men of Punta Gorda are presently hospitalized – one in the Punta Gorda Hospital and the other at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital – after they chopped and stabbed one another respectively while fighting [...]

Corozal money changer escapes death
Martin Guerra, 47, a money changer of San Joaquin, Corozal District, escaped serious injury when his ear was grazed by the pellets from the gun of an unknown gunman who shot at him. He was treated [...]

Police operations nab 1,583 grams of weed, a gun and ammunition
Police on anti-drug operations in Punta Gorda, San Pedro, and Belize City, collectively found and confiscated about 1,583 grams of marijuana and 2 grams of cocaine, along with a .22 Smith and Wesson pistol loaded with [...]

San Pedro Tigersharks
San Pedro Tigersharks are first NEBL champions The inaugural National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) 2014 tournament climaxed over the weekend with Game 2 and Game 3 of the best-of-3 games championship series culminating with the San [...]

“Mr. Bigs”
Ephraim “Mr. Bigs” Banner, man of principles I’ve been noticing for some time now, most small villages have one or more individuals who are great help for the villagers who live there or people who visit. [...]

Weekend Warriors Tour
Weekend Warriors Tour and Criterium results Below are the results from the Belize Bank/Stationery House/Stag Beer Tour held from Friday, June 20, to Saturday, June 21. Also following that are the results from the Anglican Diocese [...]

Belizean athletes
Belizean athletes compete at Central American Senior Championships in Honduras Returning to Belize today was a delegation of the Belize Athletics Association (BAA) who represented Belize at the XXV Central American Senior Championships hosted in Tegucigalpa, [...]

Smart Football
Smart Football Summer Camp kicks off on Monday at ITVET The Smart Football Summer Camp 2014 takes place from Monday, June 30, to Friday, July 11. Activities will be held daily from 8:30 a.m. to 11:30 [...]

Imports up, exports down
Consumer prices edge up 1.6% as imports reach a record $800 mil for first 5 months of 2014 Belize has become heavily dependent on imports from the United States, China, Mexico and the European Union – [...]

CWU reinstated as NTUCB member
The Christian Workers Union (CWU) underwent sweeping changes in late 2013, after the National Trade Union Congress of Belize (NTUCB) made a controversial decision to axe the union after revelations that it was not participating in [...]

H.E. Carlos Moreno, new US Ambassador, presents credentials to Governor General of Belize
Ambassador says there is no LGBT agenda Retired California judge Carlos Moreno, who arrived in Belize over the weekend, took over the United States’ Belize mission from Charge d’Affaires Margaret Hawthorne today, after he presented his [...]

Justice Abel to rule on BCB Holdings’ challenge to JA Awich appointment
Perhaps no other judicial appointment in the history of independent Belize has generated so much controversy as that of Justice of Appeal (JA) Samuel Lungole Awich, who was elevated from the Supreme Court bench two years [...]

Top ten PSE performer boycotts school graduation
Although he placed 1st for the entire southern region, his mother says that a school “practice” did not allow him valedictorian honors Today, Larry Palma, 13, received the award for obtaining the highest PSE score in [...]

SICA presidency to be handed to Belize
Prime Minister Dean Barrow departed the country today to attend the handing over of the SICA (Central American Integration System) Presidency to Belize for a 6-month period commencing July 1, 2014. The SICA Summit will be [...]

Court of Appeal will rule on DPP’s appeal of acquittal of lawmen accused of landing drug plane
Submissions concluded late Tuesday evening in the Court of Appeal, which heard from attorneys representing five police officers who were charged with facilitating the landing of a drug plane, and from the Director of Public Prosecutions [...]

Girl, 6, abducted from Benque school
A conflict between the parents of a 6-year-old girl has resulted in the kidnapping of the child from her school in Benque Viejo yesterday, and her whereabouts are now unknown. Police said that the parents of [...]

Orange Walk Town student, 14, missing
The mother and family of Bianca Miriany Guerra, 14, a student of Altun Ha Street, Orange Walk Town, are very worried after she went missing on Monday, June 23. The girl’s sister told police that Bianca [...]

The Reporter

Uruguayan coach to resign in protest
Oscar Tabarez, Uruguay coach has threatened to resign from two Fifa posts in protest of what he terms as the “excessive severity” of Luis Suarez’s ban. Tabarez said Suarez was made a “scapegoat” following his punishment for a third biting incident. The 67-year-old says he will leave his roles on Fifa’s technical study group and strategic committee. Suarez bit Giorgio Chiellini during Tuesday’s game in which Uruguay beat Italy 1-0. He has been banned from all football-related activity for four months and is also suspended from Uruguay’s next nine internationals. In addition, he was fined£65,680.

Guatemalan family dispute turns Belizean kidnapping
Efforts are ongoing to locate a six-year-old girl who was kidnapped from in front of her Benque Viejo school on Tuesday. Jermary Yony Cancinos, who lives in Melchor De Mencos, Guatemala, was forced into a blue Kia brand vehicle in front of Hills of Promise […]

Public Standards Bureau to investigate Cop assault on civilian policemen
The Public Standards Bureau is currently conducting an investigation to determine whether two policemen, a sergeant included, are criminally and are answerable to a complaint of assault upon a civilian. The investigation follows a formal report last Thursday night by Ernesto Chan, 39, a […]

Boy 15 stabs farmer at graduation party Belmopan police say rival groups at odds
Belmopan police are looking for a 15 year-old boy after he allegedly stabbed Moses Ruiz, 22 on Saturday at a graduation party in Valley of Peace community, Cayo, located six miles off the George Price Highway at mile 45. A source at the Belmopan […]

Court Reporters! A simple solution for a persistent problem
By Kenneth Gale Belize prosecutes defendants under a law and under procedures that are manifestly unjust. Such unjust prosecutions can result in the convictions of the innocent and long periods of punitive imprisonment while an innocent defendant awaits trial. Such inappropriate procedures have resulted in low conviction rates and the […]

Slight decrease in unemployment
Belize’s unemployment rate as of April 2014 is 11.1 percent, down slightly from 11.7 percent in April of 2013, according to recently released statistics from the Statistical Institute of Belize. As of April 2014 there were 16,730 unemployed persons in Belize, which according to […]

Belizean government must pay American couple for damage to property
BELIZE CITY, Mon. June 23, 2014 The Government of Belize is at fault for allowing Toledo villagers to destroy a crocodile sanctuary while searching for two missing children nearly four years ago, a court has decided. The Court of Appeal on Monday dismissed the appeal […]

Fire kills woman, guts four buildings, leaves seven homeless
Jacqueline Arteaga, 23, a mother of three children under ten years old, died when she reportedly became trapped in a fire that totally destroyed three buildings and partially gutted another on Newtown Barracks, Belize City, early Wednesday morning. Arteaga, reports say, was an employee […]

Protest greets new US ambassador
BELMOPAN, Tues. June 24, 2014 Five persons, led by Belize Can’s President Patrick Menzies, protested the arrival of United States’ newest Ambassador to Belize, His Excellency Carlos Moreno. The protesters objected to Moreno’s arrival on the grounds that believe the ambassador is in Belize to […]

Exams are a useful tool which allows us to gauge the competence and performance of our students and of our teachers. But it would be wrong to conclude that teachers alone are to blame because more than 40 percent of students under-perform in PSE examinations. The problem goes much deeper […]

Penner bound for trial; ROC supports COLA
The trial date in the private prosecution against Elvin Penner, former junior minister in Barrow administration, is set for July 24. That is when evidence will be presented and witnesses will testify on behalf of the Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA), which is […]

FIFA invests $2M on FFB field

The football field at the Football Federation of Belize compound in Belmopan is getting a facelift in time for the opening of the champions’ league next week. The season opens on Tuesday and according to FFB President, Ruperto Vicente, the field will be finished by Monday. Vicente explained that the […]

KHMH penalizes staffers for abandoned fetus
The Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, KHMH is in the process of administering penalties to those members of staff whom it deems responsible for the abandoned fetus found under one of its beds last month. The Reporter has confirmed with the hospital’s Public Relations Manager Sheena […]

AG Preliminary Report: Officials uncoorperative!
The Preliminary Auditor General’s report on the Penner-Passport Scandal reveals that the AG’s office met resistance from key government officials from the onset of the investigation. The report, which the activist group Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) shared with the media this week, […]

The Belize Times

Fire On The Barracks!! – Pregnant mother killed in blaze
21 year old Jacqueline Arteaga, who was pregnant for her third child, perished in a fire that destroyed three business establishments on Newton Barracks. The fire started at Kimmy’s Bar and Club in the wee hours of Wednesday morning. The downstairs of the establishment housed the bar and club, while the upstairs were rooms where the employees resided. Around 4:30 on Wednesday morning, neighbours woke up to the sound of crackling, thick smoke and a huge fire. The building, an old wooden structure, was ablaze. Reports are that all the residents evacuated, except for Jacqueline, who was trapped inside. Reports are that she was told to jump through a window to save herself, but she refused, saying that it could pose a threat to her pregnancy. She remained inside the building throughout the fire and perished. The fire was intense and eventually spread unto the building next to it, which housed computer hardware store Business Computer Systems Limited, owned by Lourdes and Giovanni Smith. Within minutes the fire swelled and consumed both buildings totally. Residents say that had called the Fire Department but the fire fighters took 45 minutes to respond. Upon arriving on the scene, they seemed disorganised and poorly manned.

Check Yourself!
Political philosophy explores topics such as politics, justice, rights and the enforcement of laws. It is a study of the duties owed to a people by its government and the duties (if any) owed to that government by its citizens. It also looks at when a government might be legitimately overthrown. In political philosophy, revolution is considered not only a right but the duty of a people whose government acts against their common interests. The “right of revolution” dates as far back and was first articulated as part of an official state philosophy of the Zhou Dynasty which ruled China from 1122 until 256 BC. The Chinese believed that Heaven gave emperors the right to rule based only on their ability to govern well. This was referred to as the “Mandate of Heaven”. The Chinese also believed that if a ruler did not rule well or became despotic, then Heaven itself would withdraw the mandate which would then result in the overthrow of said ruler and regime. In fact, the Christians of Jesus day, actually believed that he was sent to lead them in a revolution that would overthrow the oppressive Roman regime. The philosophy has been used throughout history to justify various rebellions, including the American Revolution and the French Revolution.

This Barrow administration is sitting on a powder keg. Its arrogance, its greed, its corruption, its nepotism, its mockery and hypocrisy towards the poor and dispossessed, its indifference to the voices of dissent AND of reason and its overall ruthlessness, are no longer palatable to the masses-certainly not to the majority of this small multi-ethnic population. The voices of discontent are slowly becoming a crescendo. There are frightening signs that the attitude of the Prime Minister is to take no prisoners and to vanquish any opposition and dissent, even within his own encampment of crooks, hustlers and thieves. It would seem that not one single member of the Cabinet is now above reproach. There is strong evidence that money laundering is one of the many favourite crimes of choice. It appears that the Financial Intelligence Unit, which falls within the Prime Minister’s portfolio in his role as Minister of Finance, has its head in the sand while people in the international business of following money, sees Belize as a money laundering haven.

Premium Gas increases by 36 cents!
Belize City, June 25th, 2014 The price of Premium gas increased at midnight on Tuesday, June 24th 2014 by a whopping 36 cents! The new price per gallon, which now is $12.03, surprised drivers across the country as there had been no announcement of the hike in price by the facey UDP ...

Auditor General fingers Elvin Penner in Report!
BELIZE CITY, Thursday, June 26th, 2014 It wasn’t that much of a surprise that disgraced ex-Minister of Immigration Elvin Penner has long been believed to be at the center of the. But now, with the ...

US places Belize on Human Trafficking Watchlist – “Police Officers provide security for sex trade establishments” – Trafficking In Persons Report, 2014
Belize City, June 25, 2014 Belize’s anti Trafficking efforts have worsened according to a report by the United States Department of State, which announced that the country has been placed on a “Watch list” along with countries with Governments that does not fully comply with the minimum standards of elimination of ...

City Boys & Collet Strikers lead SMART Mundialito
Belize City, June 21, 2014 The City Boys and Collet Strikers are leading the 2014 SMART Mundialito into week 7 of the tournament held at the Yarborough Green. Carlston FC and Heights FC played to a nil-zip ...

Belize Bank Bulldogs clobber Customs 11-4
Belize City, June 21, 2014 The Belize Bank Bulldogs posted their 4th win over Customs/Central Bank in the Belize City interoffice softball competition at the Rogers Stadium last Saturday evening. Bulldogs took a bite out of Customs ...

Tigersharks are 2014 Elite Basketball Champs!!
San Pedro Town, June 22, 2014 The San Pedro Tigersharks will go down in history as the first National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) champs. The Tigersharks were very hungry for the win as a heated Game 3 unfolded against the Cayo ...

Green Tropics’ proposal doesn’t cut it, says attorney for Valley of Peace farmers
Belize City, June 23, 2014 A proposal pitched by Green Tropics Limited to a group of Valley of Peace farmers to end a dispute over land ownership has been deemed as unacceptable by the farmers’ attorney Senior Counsel Andrew Marshalleck. The farmers have accused Green Tropics of destroying hundreds of thousands of ...

St. Matthews Government Primary School graduates 27
27 proud young and promising Belizeans said farewell to St. Matthew’s Government Primary School at a special graduation ceremony held today, June 25, 2014. The graduating class was led by Valedictorian ...

Belize lags behind in Internet Use & Affordability
Belize City, May 27, 2014 Belize sits at the bottom of the ranking in the area of internet use in the Caribbean region. A recently-released World Development Indicators report shows that Belize and Haiti are the countries with the lowest levels of ...

HOME ECONOMICS – The Great Forestry Opportunity
by Richard Harrison The economy of Belize once depended heavily on forestry-based industry, especially during the second half of the 1800’s and first half of the 1900’s. It provided most of the jobs in what was then a British colony. Logwood for production of dye….and mahogany for furniture production….were the principal contributors ...

Lying in the House of Representatives and Independence of the Judiciary – A Case of Déjà Vu
By Andrew Marshalleck SC Last week the President of the Bar Association Mr. Eamon Courtenay SC directly accused the Prime Minister of lying in the House of Representatives. The language of the accusation was colourful, thoughtful and measured; no doubt a ...

Lost Dreams
By Gilroy Usher Sr. A careful view of the on-going massive sale of homes by the commercial banks and other lending institutions in Belize reveal a number of interesting things. This week alone, over 120 homes have been lost by various individuals and are being sold away. The vast majority of ...

By Dolores Balderamos Garcia In this piece I wish first of all to commend the writer of “Think About It” for his entry on Lavern Longsworth which appeared on page 30 of the Belize Times for June 22, 2014. Lavern is the Belizean woman who was harshly convicted and sentenced for the ...

REFLECTIONS ON THE PUBLIC SQUARE – Wilfred Sedi Elrington- The Real “Charade”
By Francis W. Fonseca Last week in an interview with the media, Attorney General and Minister of Foreign Affairs Hon. Wilfred Elrington described the COLA private prosecution of Elvin Penner as a “charade”. Elrington went to great lengths to disparage and belittle the efforts of COLA, and its young, dynamic, and patriotic ...

PUP condemns the press release issued by the Office of the PM
June 25th, 2014 PRESS RELEASE The People’s United Party condemns the press release issued Tuesday June 24th 2014 by the Office of the Prime Minister in which it responds to perceived “attacks” on Justice of Appeal Awich. The press release was personal in nature, intimidating and threatening in tone and reckless and ...

Patrick JonesPJ

Deon Bruce given stay of execution in extradition fight
Deon Bruce faces extradition to the United States on murder charges following a decision of the Supreme Court upholding that of Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith. However he was given a reprieve today as Justice Courtney Abel granted a stay of execution so that the decision can be appealed […]

Court of Appeal reduces Lavern Longsworth’s prison sentence
Convicted murderer Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth has appealed her conviction, citing that at the time she killed her partner David White in 2010, she was suffering the effects of battered woman’s syndrome. The Court of Appeal has accepted that defense and reduced her charge to manslaughter from murder. However, […]

Retrial ordered for alleged facilitators of drug plane landing in Toledo
The case of six men accused of aiding in the landing of an alleged drug plane on the Southern Highway in 2012 concluded in the Court of Appeal late this evening. Police officers Corporal Renel Grant, Corporal Nelson Middleton, Sergeant Lawrence Humes, and Sergeant Jacinto Roches; former Customs boatman Harold […]

First indigenous attorney called to Bar
Monica Coc Magnusson, the sister of noted Maya rights activist Christina Coc, made legal history today as the first member of the indigenous Maya community of Belize to be called to the Belize Bar. Today she was formally admitted by Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin at the Supreme Court […]

Traffic prosecutor charged over unlicensed firearm
Thirty-three year old Joseph Nunez, a prosecutor at traffic court, went to Belize Central Prison today after he appeared before Magistrate Herbert Panton on charges of kept firearm and ammunition without a gun license. Nunez pleaded not guilty to the charges but was remanded into custody until August […]

Youths charged with firearm robbery
28 year old Phillip Samuels and 19 year old Aymon Flores, who allegedly stole a firearm from Carl Butler, were charged with robbery when they appeared today before Magistrate Herbert Panton. They pled not guilty to the charge and they were denied bail after the prosecutor objected to […]

Darrell Carter in tax trouble again
Businessman and former PUP politician Darrell Carter is in trouble with the court again. This time Carter was charged with failure to make Social security Board contributions for the period February to May 2014. He appeared today before the Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith and pled not guilty […]

Senior police officers undergo criminal justice training in the USA
Five senior Belizean law enforcement personnel have completed a training course in criminal justice and are headed back to Belize ready to utilize the acquired knowledge in their daily work. The graduation took place today. The Belizean attendees of the training were: Senior Superintendent Deziree Phillips, Superintendent […]

Major discontent among staff at Faith Nazarene Primary School
The 2013-2014 academic year ended on a very sour note for teachers at the Faith Nazarene Primary School in San Ignacio town. And the principal of the institution, or to be more precise – her attitude, is at the heart of the upheaval among the staff. The […]

Major decisions handed down by Belize Court of Appeal
The Belize Court of Appeal closed its second session of the year with two major decisions today. In the appeal of Lavern Longsworth, the Court of Appeal substituted a conviction of manslaughter and handed down a sentence of 8 years in prison retroactive to the date she was […]

September Celebrations theme chosen
The September celebrations are still a good two months away, but the National Celebrations Commission today announced the theme for this year’s festivities. According to a press release issued this morning the theme is: “Industrious hands, intelligent minds, together for Belize.” The theme will be used as […]

Man assaulted, teenage boy detained as suspect
A man remains hospitalized in stable condition after being knocked unconscious in what authorities describe as a case of aggravated assault. Denver Stuart was the victim of the assault which happened on Tuesday near the junction of the old Northern Highway and the Phillip Goldson Highway. According […]


Dia De San Pedro Festival Goes Into Full Swing Tonight…As Do Belize’s Two Oldest Lobsterfests
Long before Lobster Festival in San Pedro (started in June 2007), there was Dia De San Pedro. The week before June 29th is a combination of culture, religion and fun celebrating the patron saint of our town, St. Peter. A fishermens’ breakfast. A art exhibition – Check out Bob’s blog on the Art & Photo Exhibition and a gorgeous picture of Wilema from Island Academy. Lecture on the Caste Wars (I wish I attended that…it’s something that really brought many of the San Pedrano families to the caye and something I know next to nothing about.) All interesting stuff… The front street is aflutter with red, green and white flags to celebrate.

“People” in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
It’s taken me nearly week to get this edition out. I tried to start it when I was sitting at Estel’s Dine By the Sea on Monday morning waiting for breakfast. But I just sat there looking at the Caribbean Sea wondering what in the hell I was going to write about. I had gone through the same fruitless process earlier when I was out on the veranda -the western one on the first floor – from around 05.00 hours taking my caffeine fix. I could have taken the easy way out and produced another edition on Lobster Fest .I’ve got loads of photos that I took on Saturday night that I could have used but I decided not to. Lobster Fest has, after all, been ‘done to death’ by anyone who has a blog. And I include myself.

Igniting a Cultural Renaissance and avoiding temptation
Anyone who has ever been to San Pedro knows how easy it is to get temped by food and drink here. Since I have a couple of special events coming up where I plan to indulge a bit, I am doing my best to eat well and give my body a rest with super healthy food and drinks. As a result, yesterday was all about avoiding temptation from the get go starting at breakfast. I totally wanted to chow down on bacon and eggs instead I opted for a yummy pineapple and banana fruit smoothie and enjoyed the view with Shirlee and Frank. My first errand brought me to another strong temptation that ranks right up there with fried eggs and bacon, fine chocolate. I managed to get away from the treats counter with a quick glance at the artistic chocolate lobsters and fish while I was paying for my favorite chocolate mint body spray. It smells so yummy and is my secret way to substitute sweet treats when I am eating low sugar.

Farewell Belize!
Travel is by far one of the best teachers we should all allow ourselves to seize. I found that the world does not actually conform to all the snazzy theories we read about in books or online. The world runs on people. Even though history teaches us that there are geo-political differences among us, I have learned that human beings all over the world are fundamentally the same. Many friends and family who are closet to me describe my living philosophy established in a free spirit mindset. Being free-spirited means having the courage to not only follow your dreams, but to also take the time to figure out who we really are – which is arguably a very difficult and soul searching journey. It involves taking the time to unearth secret passions that maybe you didn't even know you had – and then taking the plunge to follow those passions.

Belize in Photos

International Sourcesizz

Mount Everest in 3D
You can climb Everest and look around from the summit in virtual reality. also take note of the avalanche tragedy that befell 16! sherpas ....... amazing chance to see what incredible lengths it takes to climb this far, this high

New US Ambassador to Belize
New United States Ambassador to Belize Carlos Moreno presented his credentials to Governor General Sir Colville Young on Tuesday. Moreno expressed his desire to work with the government on “matters of mutual interest, issues relating to youth, culture education, health and commerce.” He said there was “great potential” for continuing strong relations between the two countries. Belize’s Governor General said he was particularly interested in building relations as it relates to “youth.” Moreno is a former Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court.

Inequality poses Central America’s most daunting challenge: Dominican leader
President Danilo Medina Thursday night said the huge inequality gap among citizens, where a few have it all and the vast majority has nothing, is the main challenge for the countries that form the Central American Integration System (SICA). Medina, speaking to journalists at the SICA Ordinary Summit of Heads of State and Governments, said in Central American and Caribbean countries a small group has it all and the vast majority little or nearly nothing. He said the challenge for those countries is to raise their people’s standard of living, as integration wouldn't make sense if people don’t feel that it’s in their personal interest.


Video: Belize Zipline and Cave Tubing, 5min.
Cruise ship passenger....

Video: Oh Barracuda, Belizean Style, 6min.
Kids went fishing with me near San Pedro, Belize. We had an excellent Captain by the name of John Murray along with deckboss San. The handled the Kelly J and treated us just right. Thanks for a wonderful day of fishing the Caribbean.

Video: Driving along the Northern Highway, Orange Walk, Belize, on June 26, 2014, 3min.

Video: "The Future", 15min.
Sanctuary Belize Owners Update Trimmed Version- April 2014

Video: Discover Kanantik Belize, 2min.

Video: Belize - Ambergris Caye - 2014, 5min.
My wife and I took a trip to Belize in June 2014. Cave Tubing, Zip-lining, Spear Fishing, Snorkeling, Diving, I dove the Blue Hole. The video has a little bit of everything. We stayed on Ambergris Caye. All of the video was shot using my GoPro 3 Silver. Enjoy.

Video: Lasell College Ecotourism Trip 2014, Belize, 10min.
A documentary following Lasell College's HEM214 Ecotourism class on their service learning trip to Belize.

America Mia

America Mia

Video: Family Vacation to Belize, 5min.

Video: Feeding Barracuda Upclose in Belize, 1/2min.
Feeding Stingrays, sharks and a barracuda up close in Belize with Cleis Chloe mazden Max mason and Michelle

Video: A Year in Belize, 7min.
The Video story of a year in Belize. Read the blog at

June 27, 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

Kaj Expressions Raises Awareness and Hairs at Design Caribbean
Belizean jewellery designer Khadija Assales may have raised a few eyebrows with her collection crafted from the tails of the notoriously ravenous Pterois or Lionfish but she was also successful in raising awareness about the devastating effect that the carnivorous species have been having on the aquatic ecosystems of Belize and the rest of the Caribbean region. Assales launched her line of Lionfish jewellery as part of the Design Caribbean pavilion during the Calabash Literary Festival in Treasure Beach , St. Elizabeth , Jamaica from May 30th to June 1st. The Design Caribbean project was the brainchild of the Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) in sponsorship of the Calabash Festival. It was conceptualized as a means of showcasing the rich and varied talent which the region has to offer while opening up a new market for the creative entrepreneurs who may not otherwise been able to take advantage of the opportunity which Calabash provides.

Island students receive certificate from GREAT Program
21 students from New Horizon Seventh Day Adventist School (SDA) and nine students from Holy Cross Anglican School (HCAS) have received certificates marking the completion of the Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) Program. The program was instructed by Police Constable (PC) Juan Chuc and is part of a country wide police initiative to educate children on the consequences of gang violence. The GREAT program began in Belize in 2010 when police officers travelled to San Salvador, El Salvador for a two-week training on how to integrate the program into the school curriculum. The program is divided into training for both children and adults, and the 13-lesson course provides knowledge on gang resistance and healthier ways for children to express their frustration. PC Chuc stated that one of the main reasons children join gangs is to release frustration that is sometimes fostered at home. “The GREAT program gives the students a variety of choices they can make in life to better themselves instead of falling into criminal activity,” said PC Chuc.

Justice Oswell Legall ruling upheld in Court of Appeal; GOB must compensate ACES
The Belize Court of Appeal has upheld a 2012 ruling that the Government of Belize (GOB) is liable for the destruction of the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES), property of Vince and Cherie Chenot-Rose. The Appeal Court ruling was handed down on Monday June 23rd after three judges heard arguments from attorneys from both ACES and GOB. The Roses’ property outside of Forest Home Village in the Toledo District was burned down in September of 2010 by a mob of over 100 Maya villagers from San Marcos. The angry mob stormed on to the ACES compound after a “witch doctor/psychic” indicated to the indigenous villagers that the Roses, who were on Ambergris Caye at the time, had two missing children, nine year-old Benjamin Rash and his 11 year-old sister, Onelia. The Roses were notified that a mob was heading to their property and had called the police for assistance. The police did show up, but only after they heard that the property had been set on fire by the mob.

Reina de La Costa Maya #TBT – Where are they now?
As we draw near to the arrival of the International Costa Maya Festival®, and the highly anticipated Reina de La Costa Maya pageant, we are looking back on the beauties who have graced the stage. Many of the lovely young ladies have gone on to fabulous careers and excelled in their endeavors. We have tracked down some of the ladies, including past winners, and will be sharing a little bit of their lives since the pageant! We begin with the FIRST ever Miss Reina de La Costa Maya. She is Maria del Socorro Retolaza. Maria represented Mexico at the pageant, and took the crown and new title proudly back to her hometown of Veracruz in 1996. We located her, and spoke to her recently about her participation and how life has been since.

Coral Reef Ed-Venture is back!
Six students from Smith College in Northampton, Massachusetts in the United States of America (USA) are on Ambergris Caye working along with other island students as part of the annual Coral Reef Ed-Venture program. The program is being held at the San Pedro High School, and is a collaborative effort between San Pedro’s Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Smith College. Every summer, the US students host the two-week camp promoting conservation in which the participants are divided into groups: advance (ages 13 to 18) and junior (ages 7-12). Kayla Clark of Smith College explained that, the camp has an emphasis on mangrove, ocean and reef conservation. “The purpose is to connect students with people who are doing research and conservation in San Pedro year round, so that if they are interested in conservation they can continue in that area. It is also geared for the participants to foster an excitement about the ocean and learn about conservation and to provide tools and skills they might use.”

Appreciation Ceremony for the donation of two motor bikes
The San Pedro Police Department is holding an Appreciation Ceremony for Belize Social Security Board for the donation of two motor bikes and a power wash system. Present at the ceremony was Officer in Charge Luis Castellanos, Deputy Henry Jemmott, Eastern Division Assistant Commissioner of Police Miguel Segura, Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Social Security Branch Manager Miriam Requena.

Ambergris Today

Miss Earth Belize leaves for Nassau, Bahamas
A total of 15 Miss Earth Queens who participated in the 2013 Miss Earth Pageant in Manila, Philippines last December were invited to visit Nassau, Bahamas, Miss Earth Belize being amongst them. Amber Rivero, twenty two years old, was away for five weeks last year November as she represented Belize in the 2013 Miss Earth International Pageant in Manila Philippines. Amber is currently pursuing her bachelor degree in Business Management at the University of Belize. Special thanks to her parents Indira Samuels and Javier Rivero, Armando and Eva Moguel, J’adore Boutique, and all friends and family who have supported her along her journey and help made this trip possible.

Successful HIV Testings by The National AIDS Commission
Throughout the month of May the National AIDS Commission (NAC) / Country Coordinating Mechanism (CCM) Island Committee along with the Pan American Social Marketing Organization (PASMO) and the Dr. Otto Rodriguez Polyclinic II realized several outreach activities throughout the San Pedro community. Reaching thousands, and testing nearly one hundred individuals, the team’s efforts spread sexual health knowledge, made individuals aware of their HIV status and established contact with both the general population and at-risk populations. Sexual health education presentations were given at six distinct bars and construction sites. With the help of nurses from Dr. Otto Rodriguez Polyclinic II the committee made fast, free and confidential HIV testing available to anyone who wanted to know their status.

San Pedro Dance Academy Summer Camp Intensive
The San Pedro Dance Academy teamed up once again with the Wisconsin Dance Factory to bring 12 days of summer fun for all children on La Isla Bonita. Many talented dancers gathered at the SPDA Studio to learn some new dance moves which they will showcase at their final dance show coming up Sunday, June 29, 2014, at the San Pedro Lions Den. Mrs. Tina (Teacher at the Wisconsin Dance Factory) commented to Ambergris Today that they have been doing this exchange program for many years with the San Pedro Dance Academy. This program was created for the students to learn about each others countries, cultures and lifestyles. Kudos to these two dance companies for their hard work in the community of Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Sersland and Reasa Wedding Nuptials
On her 46th birthday and 7th anniversary of her first date, Dr. Renae Sersland married David Reasa in a private ceremony held at the Courthouse in Belize City. She took along her two children and witnesses Charlene Woods and Sylvia Eiley who had been sworn to secrecy and had a lovely family dinner at the Wood’s residence in Palm Lane, Belize City. Such a pleasant surprise to family and friends of Renae and David, we cannot get upset with the lovey newly weds for keeping it a secret. We at Ambergris Today and community of San Pedro congratulate and wish them a happy life together as Mr. and Mrs. Reasa.

Diamante Belize to Host Service Industry Appreciation Night
“Let's stop for a minute to think about how big of an achievement it is to beat out islands like Bora Bora, St. John, Turks and Caicos, and Easter Island for the first (2013) AND second (2014) annual Travelers' Choice Awards by TripAdvisor! We understand that this would never have been possible without YOU, the service industry employees! With that said, we hope you join us in celebrating this achievement on Saturday, July 5 at our Service Industry Appreciation Night! From 9:00PM until 10:00PM, Diamante is giving away draft beer. Yup, you heard correctly: FREE BEER! Share this with your friends and help us spread the word to any and all friends you have that work in the service industry!

Mix Delicious Cocktails with Belize’s Baron Gin, New to Travellers Liqours
Ambergris Today took to the hard task of sampling some great tasting cocktails made from the Baron Gin provided to us by Travellers Liquors Ltd. and prepared to us by the newest beach bar in town located at the Ocean Tide Beach Resort. The results were very tasty and we ended up enjoying a great-tasting Belizean products at the great lounge ambience by the beach that is Ocean Tide. The gin is excellent with tonic water and lime for a nice ‘Gin & Tonic’, great for martinis and the classic Gin and Pink Grapefruit Juice. We share with you the recipes of four cocktails made with Travellers Baron Gin so you can try them for yourself or request them at your favorite hangout.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Dental admin NCO brings smiles to Belizeans
She’s the first person you see when entering the makeshift dental clinic in Belize City, Belize. Tech. Sgt. Shirere Carter, a dental admin non-commissioned officer from the 99th Dental Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, is in the country supporting the U.S. Southern Command sponsored New Horizons exercise. During the exercise, medical practitioners are receiving training that helps them prepare for overseas deployments by providing care to people who may not have had easy access to healthcare in the past. In two short weeks, Carter has checked in and documented records for more than 700 Belizean dental patients. This is her first deployment. “It’s been so rewarding just to see the patients,” she said. “The Belizean people are so humble and thankful.”

Biomedical tech keeps dental mission running smoothly
Picture this. You arrive in Belize for a dental exercise, open your shipping containers, test out your equipment and find out that six out of twelve generators are broken. Ordering and paying for six more generators for a mission that’s already begun is not an option. Time is of the essence and supplies are limited. So, what do you do? You call on Staff Sgt. Michael Muschong, a biomedical equipment technician deployed in support of the New Horizons exercise from the 99th Medical Support Squadron at Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, to come to the rescue. He performs preventative maintenance calibration and repairs on all medical equipment. So, what did he do when half of the generators came in broken? He pulled a “McGyver,” scrapping one generator to make parts to fix the other five. “You have to work with what you have,” said Muschong. “It’s important to think on your feet and be very ingenuitive.”

Caribbean Export Creates Opportunities
The Caribbean Export Development Agency (Caribbean Export) hosted a Business Forum on June 25th, 2014 for private sector firms as well as other key stakeholders from CARIFORUM, the French Caribbean Outermost regions (FCORs) and EU Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) in the Caribbean, with the aim of facilitating greater trade between the territories on the island of Grand Cayman. Despite their being part of the wider Caribbean region and the existence of the Economic Partnership Agreement (EPA), trade and economic cooperation between the French Caribbean Outermost regions (FCORs) and EU Overseas Countries and Territories (OCTs) in the Caribbean and CARIFORUM territories remains under-developed. The exception to this is Trinidad and Tobago who exports large quantities of energy and energy related products to FCORs and OCTs.

Celebrate the growth of your business with learning tools!
2014 Workshop Calendar

Cayo Classifieds - Issue 22
This week's But and Sell Weekly. Read about the Black Hole Drop, the Saturday market, and the Green Iguana Conservation Project.

Planning to attend the BAAS?
Check out the schedule to find out which papers would be of interest to you. We hope to see you there!

Channel 7

Penner Back To Court; COLA Lives To Fight Another Day
Last night, we showed you a few of the eye-catching excerpts from the leaked Auditor General's preliminary report into the irregularities at the Immigration Department. COLA was the first to get the document to help their private prosecution of Elvin Penner. The only problem is that the report isn't very useful as evidence in a trial because it is considered hearsay. So, COLA was still searching for first hand evidence when they went back before the Belmopan Magistrate's Court today. Of course, the time for securing evidence had passed, because today was the date that COLA should have handed over all materials they intended to use against Penner. So, would they get another extension - or would the case be dismissed for want of evidence. 7news was in Belmopan for the hearing, and Daniel Ortiz reports: Daniel Ortiz "Mr. Penner, you are expected to come back here one last time for trial, what's your expectation?" Hon. Elvin Penner - On Trial For Immigration Charges "No comment at this point in time." Daniel Ortiz reporting Today was the very first time since he's been coming to court that Elvin Penner actually responded to questions from the awaiting media. Perhaps, he chose today knowing that so far, COLA hasn't provided much by way of evidence to convict him for the crimes he's currently accused of.

Jacky Arteaga's Strange Living Situation Explored
What or who started the fire at Kimmy's Bar on Newtown Barracks on Wednesday morning? That's what fire investigators are still trying to find out. The area on Newtown Barracks remained closed to traffic today - and fire teams are still combing through the rubble. And while the physical losses are one story, the tragedy is the death of Jacqueline Arteaga. The Belize City resident was living in Copper Bank village, but when her relationship there ended, she came to live in Belize City. That was three months ago, and she had been living at Kimmy's for the past month. We got that information from her mother who agreed to an interview at her home in the Lake Independence Area today so that she could set the record straight. First, she says her daughter was not 24, as has been widely reported; she was 21, the mother of 3 children, ages 6, 4, and 2 - and she wasn't a prisoner inside Kimmy's - she asked to appear of camera:.. VOICE OF: Maria - Mother of Jacqueline Arteaga "I want to thank everybody what they are feeling with me the pain that I am going through and next thing that I want to say is that she was not 24, 25 or 23, she was 21 years old and she was a nice young girl, friendly and always like to party and things like that. I don't want anybody to be saying that she was forced to work there because that is not true. She works wherever she wants to work. She had just work one week and then about one month after she told me that she is going to work another week. She went to work another week and then she stop and then afterwards she came and tell me that Ms. Merlyn was going to rent her a room there."

Chik-V In Mexico, Salvador, Surely Coming To Belize
The Chikungunya virus - also known as Chik-V for short has now been identified in Mexico. Today, international news reports said that the Mexican Undersecretary for Health confirmed that a citizen who travelled to Antigua and Barbuda got sick a few weeks after he came back. So, that means Chik-V has appeared in Salvador and Mexico - one a neighbor to Belize, the other nearby. In fact, in just a few months, it has spread from a single country to 28, and counting; there are 180,000 suspected cases, 5 thousand cases confirmed and 21 deaths. And, local health authorities say it's not if, but when Chik-V will come to Belize. But it hasn't come yet. That was underscored at a press conference at the Central Health region today:.. Dr. Michael Pitts, Director of Health Service "There is no known case of Chikungunya in Belize. We cannot say that we will prevent Chikungunya from coming to the country. Our goal is to try and reduce it to a small number as possible. It's not if, it will come here and because we won't be able to get rid of the vector we will have to continue manage that - those cases." And managing it means the ministry of health and you have to keep down mosquito populations. The Ministry says it will do its part: its fleet of vehicles for mosquito spraying has recently been increased - and they seemed ready to blitz the adult mosquitoes and the larvae:...

New Horizons Ends
For the past few months, personnel from the US Military's Southern Command have been in Belize. They've been working with the Belize Defence Force under the New Horizons program to provide training, and to build classrooms and medical facilities. This year's new Horizons effort led the construction of 4 new classrooms in the Belize District at Edward P. York High School, Hattieville Government School, Sadie Vernon High School, and Stella Maris School. also, under New Horizons, a brand new medical unit was built at the Western Regional Hospital, and the US SouthCom's doctors saw over 7,000 patients while here. This year's session officially came an end with a ceremony this afternoon at the newly built classroom building at the Hattieville Government School, and 7News attended. Brigadier General David Jones, Commander, B.D.F. "This is a project that we try to get from the US military as often as possible. In the past they use to come at least once every 4 years. We've had it back to back now and we are trying to it again at least by 2016. They have already confirmed they are going to come back. What New Horizon does is provide infrastructure projects specifically for schools and medical facilities. This year they did 4 schools; this one here at Hattieville, one at Edward P Yorke, one at Sadie Vernon and the other at Crooked Tree. They also did a hospital In Belmopan which is an excellent facility."

Joint Operations Center Operating Correctly
Another important venture between the US Government and the BDF is the new Joint Operation Center. It's supposed to be a facility on the BDF Price Barracks base where all the different law enforcement agencies in the country pool their resources and intelligence. The Join Operation Center has been operational for the past 2 months, and today the commander of the BDF told the media that it is working exactly as intended: Brigadier General David Jones, Commander, B.D.F. "We started off calling it the JOC; it has changed its name to JIOC. JOC means the Joint Operation Center; we've transformed it now to JIOC which is Joint Operation and Intelligence Center because we've combined intelligence personnel inside the building. That building has been operating for over two months from the time we inaugurated it. The B.D.F. was the first to get in, and then we had the coast guard, the police and sometimes the Customs and Immigration works with us. We've done a number of successful operations inside the Joint Operation Center. We had the marijuana eradication campaign that we did with the US Army where Joint Task Force Bravo came in from Honduras and we destroyed over twenty-nine million dollars worth of marijuana plantation. We've done two huge operation along the border destroying illegal plants, plantation and capturing people planting marijuana and capturing people doing illegal logging within the Chiquibul and also the Bladen Reserve. So that's center has been very operational. We are working along with other organizations, the Police and the Coast Guard, and we continue to plan operations and execute operations from there."

US Cites Belize For Human Trafficking
While we had the opportunity, we spoke with the New US Ambassador about Belize's recent downgrade by the US State Department. The country was placed in Tier 2 in the State Department's ratings because the Agency's assessment is that the authorities haven't done enough to combat human trafficking. In its 2014 Report On Human Trafficking, which was released last week, the US State Department claimed that there is, Quote "...failure to convict and punish trafficking offenders, especially allegedly complicit government officials…" End Quote. That's very strong language, and major allegations being made against the government. Today, however, when Ambassador Carlos Moreno was asked about it, he said that while it's cause for concern, Human Trafficking isn't a problem only in Belize: Carlos Moreno, US Ambassador to Belize "These assessments are merely that. By no means are they an indictment and I think it means that we just have to work together cooperatively to address the major issues that are raised in those kinds of assessments. In terms of the relationship between the two governments, I think it demonstrates a sense of openness and a desire to engage in constructive dialogue to work on a solution. The tip problem is not just a problem in Belize; it is a worldwide problem and the United States is also implicated. So I think that these reports are good for us to look at, to analyze and come about with constructive solutions."

Health CEO Wants Nasley Charged
As we showed you, Health CEO Peter Allen was also at the closing Ceremony, and we took the opportunity to ask him for an update on the inquiry into the misappropriation of public funds at the Southern Regional Hospital. The Auditor General has found that a sum of just over 366 thousand dollars was embezzled from the hospital's Maternal and Child Health account. Hospital Administrator Nasley Sommerville has been implicated, and she's under scrutiny from the Public Services Commission and the police department. CEO Allen told us afternoon that he's been trying to find out from Dangriga Police why no criminal charges have been brought against her: Reporter "In relation to Nasley Sommerville, can you give us an update? We understand that she was expected to be criminally charged by police but she hasn't. Can you say if you know why not?" Dr. Peter Allen, CEO - Ministry of Health "I don't I'm afraid. I actually try to contact the police in Dangriga just yesterday, but we were unable to contact them. We will be trying again today and tomorrow and will be happy to give you an update as soon as we know exactly what's happening." Reporter "Anything in relation to the public service commission having arrived at a decision?" Dr. Peter Allen, CEO - Ministry of Health "As far as I am aware the public service commission has not yet heard the case."

Allen Holding Off On Pharmacy Law Review
And finally from Allen tonight, he was asked about legislation meant to crack down on importation of pharmaceuticals. According to the Pharmacists Association, there have been 3 new pieces of draft legislation which have been sitting on the Health CEO's desk with no progress since it landed there. He told the media that it's only been delayed because he and other health officials want to make sure that when they are passed into law, they do the job for which they were intended: Reporter "They have been speaking about 3 drafts legislations, one which has already gone to the Solicitor General but that one has not been take to the House and then the other two seems to be lagging behind. Why is that the case? Why have these draft legislation not been passed? In terms of putting more penalties and restrictions in the sense of importing control drugs and stuff." Dr. Peter Allen, CEO - Ministry of Health "Well I know I just saw the electronic versions of these drafts just last week. The way we deal with it then is to socialize it. In this instance through our planning unit so that every member of the profession, every technical advisor get the opportunity to see what is the objective of the legislation. Normally, policies are drafted first and then legislation empowers policy. So I've ask the planning unit and the office of the DHS to review these and define the policies that we are trying to accomplish and then bring a group of people together to look through the drafts and see exactly how it can move forward from there."

The ROC Standing Solid For COLA
At the top of the newscast, we showed you representatives from BGYEA and the Trade Unions who stood in solidarity with COLA this morning at the Elvin Penner hearing in Belmopan. As a part of the Rod of Correction movement, COLA has the support of the 10 other pressure groups. But when the Prime Minister was asked about his opinion of the ROC, he wasn't the least impressed. He said that the pressure groups can't stir unrest against his Government because there is no crisis as they would have the public believe. Luke Palacio, BNTU's national president, was asked about the prime minister's comments, and he says that ROC chooses its battles carefully: Luke Palacio, President, Belize National Teachers Union "That's the Prime Minister's position that nothing is going on with ROC, but as far as we are concerned, this organization was born out of the fact that a number of our social partners, a number of our civil society organizations are experiencing the same thing that COLA is experiencing….the matter of the disrespect, the matter of the abuse that continues to happen and so we are saying that yes, we are beginning a movement.

Man Charged For Computer Handling Claims Police Brutality
Egbert Ferguson went to court today charged for handling stolen goods, specifically a laptop computer. That's a matter for the court, but today outside of the courthouse he told Monica Bodden that the police took justice into their own hands when they beat him up. He went to court with a massive bandage over his head:.. He got 15 stitches.

Cayo's Brightest Kids Celebrated
Last night, we showed you the 25 primary school students who were the top performers in this year's Primary School Examinations. So far, we've given you a chance to meet the top students in the Belize and Orange Walk Districts, but we've neglected Cayo so we went to San Ignacio today to speak with the top students there. Here's what they told us after their very own district Award Ceremony from the Ministry of Education: Andres Hung was tied for second place country wide, while Myles Coombs placed 7thnaitonally. The Ministry of Education also held award ceremonies in Northern and Southern Belize to honor the top students from the Corozal and Orange Walk, Stann Creek, and Toledo Districts.

BTL Experiencing System-Wide Problems
Today if you had trouble making cell phone calls on BTL - you weren't alone - tens of thousands of users experienced difficulties after BTL had system wide problems. What caused it? A release from the company says it suffered an unforeseen internal power outage at 4:00 am, today which caused a service interruption on its DigiCell Platform. The problems resulting from that included, dropped or one way calls from DigiCell to DigiCell, DigiCell to Landline numbers, and other networks), degraded voice service for BlackBerry users and inability to purchase PrePaid 4G services and SMS bundles. Tonight at 6:00, BTL reported that the DigiCell platform has since been restored and services are back up to 90% functionality. Calls from DigiCell to hardline numbers are still an issue though.

FFB Not Playing With Players Money
It's been almost a year since the Belize National Team, the Jaguars, made its first appearance in the CONCACAF Gold Cup. At that time, the team members pressed the executive of the Football Federation of Belize to sign contracts to ensure that they were paid no less than $5,000 each to play the games in the US. Right now, the Federation has paid them $3,000, and has promised that they will be paid the rest of their money after FIFA delivers a portion the proceeds from this year's World Cup: Ruperto Vicente - President, FFB "We still owe the each player $2,000 Belize dollars. We have paid them some of that money because each player was promised $5,000. As you all are aware the players had force the Federation into signing an agreement with them for them to be paid $5,000 each. The players were aware that the Federation does not have that kind of money and we still don't have it, but by the 15th July the Federation is going to be receiving some monies, so we are going to be able to pay the players all their monies." Reporter "Sir, your participation at the World Cup was paid by whom?" Ruperto Vicente "FIFA has its congress every year, so the 209 federation in the world FIFA sponsors 3 delegates. So FIFA pays for 3 delegates from Belize. I as the president have to be there, the general secretary has to be there and one other member of the executive, so FIFA pays the airfare, FIFA pays the hotel and all other expenses for the 3 delegates. The rumor that went around that the federation had used its own monies to get to Brazil that was untrue. We cannot afford it. If FIFA had not paid for us to be there to attend the congress we would not have been able to go there."

Rawel Pelayo Under US Indictment; FFB Exec Seat Almost Vacant
And who can forget that when FFB Vice President, RawellPelayo, was picked up by DEA officials when he arrived as a part of the football delegation representing Belize at the Gold Cup. Since then, he's been in detention for almost a year under indictment for narcotics smuggling, but he still holds an elected seat in the FFB executive. Today, we asked FFB President Vicente about what has been done to deal Pelayo's vacant seat. Here's what he said: Ruperto Vicente - President, FFB "Mr. Pelayo is a still a member of the executive of the Football Federation of Belize. We tabled the suspension at our last congress where congress members are of the opinion that Mr. Pelayo should be given more time on the Federation's executive because we don't know what will become of his case." Reporter "The criticism here is that he has been away for months and he hasn't really done anything here in Belize and with the FFB during his time away in the US." Ruperto Vicente "Well that is true. As an executive we cannot suspend Mr. Pelayo, it takes the congress to suspend. The congress is the ultimate authority of the Football Federation and so when the congress say no, it is no, so we cannot do anything about it." Reporter "During his time away, is he still getting paid?" Ruperto Vicente "No executive member gets paid. We are not paid, it's all voluntary."

FFB Stadium Will Be Ready for Champions
And another bit of good news for the football community, the Belmopan Bandits will be allowed to participate in the CONCACAF Champion's League. As we told you the FFB Stadium has been receiving a 1.8 million dollar upgrade funded by FIFA. This was in an effort for Belize reach the qualifying standards to play in the games, and after assessing the progress on stadium made so far, CONCACAF says that the Belize can now participate. Vicente told us that it's welcome news for the 2014 Premier League Champs, The Bandits: Ruperto Vicente - President, FFB "We have received the green light but we still have the pitch to get ready by the 2nd of July and that's going to confirm their participation. Yes there are in and all we need to do now is to prepare the pitch for them." Reporter "Did you meet the deadline that had been in place?" Ruperto Vicente "Certainly we met the deadline, but just they gave us an extension to complete the pitch itself."

The Fire Aftermath
At the top of the newscast, we told you about the aftermath of the human tragedy in the Kimmy's Fire on Wednesday morning. But apart from the loss of 21 year old Jacqueline Arteaga's life, there is also substantial loss of property. Geovanni Smith of Business Computer Systems told us he lost two hundred and fifty thousand dollars - and that's just for the items he had inside! The three-story, eighty plus year old building was owned by Buster Chavannes - which is a separate loss. Neither Smith's contents nor the Chavannes structure could be insured because the building is wooden. His neighbor, Pandora's Café who has been in that location for ten years is in the same situation. The building he rents wasn't insured and it wasn't destroyed, but just about everything he had inside was destroyed either by fire or water. Today we found him picking up the pieces. He asked to appear off camera:.. Wilson, Owner - Pandora's Cafe "The whole roof is gone, so t cannot be used for anything else right now. It happened so fast."

Channel 5

Late evening shooting at Fabers Road – police aim at burglars
There was a shooting a few minutes ago on Fabers Road and Whistling Duck Street. According to an unconfirmed report, police were in hot pursuit of two burglars who had [...]

Elvin Penner appears in court for private prosecution
Since last September, it came to light that there was gross corruption in the issuance of Belizean passports to person who clearly did not qualify. In the case of South [...]

More damning information in the Auditor General Report on immigration scandal
The interim report of the Auditor-General Dorothy Bradley was leaked to COLA two weeks ago and handed over to the media this week. It has now made its way before [...]

Still no charges against Southern Regional’s Administrator Nasley Sommerville
As much as three hundred and seventy thousand dollars was siphoned off from the Southern Regional’s Maternal and Child Health account over two years. Administrator Nasley Sommerville has been fingered [...]

US Ambassador Carlos Moreno on Human Trafficking report
US Ambassador Carlos Moreno has hit the ground running. The US head of mission arrived on Saturday and on Tuesday; he was greeted with an anti-homosexual protest as he presented [...]

An update from the Rod of Correction
COLA stood against Penner today but the organization didn’t stand alone. Representatives from the recently formed Rod of Correction were on hand. R.O.C. has come under fire from Prime Minister [...]

Belize clear of CHIKV, but remains on full alert
Since chikungunya fever became an emerging threat within Latin America and the Caribbean in April, the spread of the mosquito-transmitted infection has been closely monitored regionally.  The number of CHIKV [...]

Vector Control Unit outlines MOH strategy
According to Chief Operations Officer Kim Bautista, of the Vector Control Unit, the combination of two particular species of disease-transmitting mosquitoes is responsible for the rapid spread of chikungunya across [...]

Belizeans growing older and living longer
A recent study indicates that Belizeans are living longer if they survive the first year after birth. That’s what surveys by the Statistical Institute of Belize are concluding. In the [...]

Egbert Ferguson is arraigned for handling stolen good, but claims police brutality
Twenty-two year old Egbert Ferguson was charged today with handling stolen goods. The charge came following allegations that Ferguson was in possession of a Dell Laptop stolen, along with other [...]

F.F.B. field gets a two-million dollar facelift
The Football Federation of Belize facilities in Belmopan are getting a much needed facelift, to the tune of two million dollars. The upgrade includes a FIFA certified field with certified [...]

Basketball Champions to compete against Mexican ballers
Hard on the heels of the National Elite Basketball League championship, the San Pedro Tiger Sharks are preparing to take on a Mexican delegation of athletes this weekend in Corozal [...]

New Horizon Belize 2014 comes to an end
A closing ceremony was held today for New Horizons Belize 2014 after the completion of two projects in education and health. Personnel from the U.S. Southern Command were here for [...]

Joint Operation and Intelligence Center active and successful
The New Horizons initiative is a collaborative effort between both the US military and the B.D.F.  One of their projects is the joint operating center, better known as JOC, which [...]

PASMO debunks the myths of HIV testing on Healthy Living
The Caribbean Regional Testing Day was established in 2008 as a designated day in June to promote HIV testing. Throughout the Caribbean, Ministries of Health, Scotiabanks, and other local agencies [...]


Belize Considered With The Highest Murder Rate In The World
Belize made it on the list of ten world countries with the highest murder rate. Data from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime shows the most up-to-date available homicide rates per 100,000 people for the most populous cities of 137 countries. The Americas overtook Africa as the region with the highest murder rate in 2012 – with eight of the world’s 10 deadliest cities found there. As for Belize it was listed as the fourth country with the highest murder rate based on the 2011 figures which was 105.1 per hundred thousand. The report shows that the majority of the homicides take place in one particular area of Belize City mainly sought side where gang violence is rampant.

Same Mosquito Specie That Carries Dengue Virus Is The Same For Chikungunya
Yesterday we told you about the press conference that the Ministry of Health will be holding tomorrow regarding the emerging threat of the Chikungunya disease that is quickly spreading throughout the Caribbean. Reports show that the virus has recently spread to 17 countries in the Caribbean, including Haiti and Cuba, where the number of chikungunya cases now tops 189,000, according to the Pan American Health Organization. And as of last week, 80 cases of chikungunya have been reported in 13 U.S. States. The good news is that there has been no reported case in the country of Belize.

BSCFA Reports Poor Quality Of Cane And Urges Cane farmers To Deliver Fresher Cane
As mentioned in the weekly crop review report it took 12.06 tons of cane to produce one ton of sugar, this week. That’s not good news since it means that cane quality has dropped significantly. What makes matters worse, is that as we lean closer to the end of the 2013-2014 Sugar Cane Crop Season, deliveries of cane to the mill has been slow. Now, it is important to remember that cane famers get paid based on quality and not quantity thus they are being asked to deliver better quality cane to the factory. Alfredo Ortega– Vice Chair, BSCFA “En estos momentos quiero aprovechar a decirle a los caneros de que no estamos haciendo muy bien en la calidad de cana esperamos de ellos realmente cooperen en entregar cana más fresco al ingenio y que traten aquellos grupos que no han entregado cana para miembros de su grupo que lo hagan aunque sea una porción y que puedan aprovechar de entregar algo de su cana por ellos no hacen su dinero si no entregan sus cana entonces la Asociación les pide a los grupos de que por favor luchen de entregarle algo a todas esas personas para que así el peso no solo caiga en solo un canero.

Corozal Methodist Primary School Holds GREAT Program
The final leg of the GREAT program piloted in the Corozal District took place today at the Corozal Methodist Primary School with 30 more students forming part of over 5,000 certified GREAT participants. The Gang Resistance Education and Training program is an evidence-based and effective gang and violence prevention program with law enforcement officers instructing classroom courses. This marks the fourth year that the G.R.E.A.T program has been implemented in primary schools country wide. Dephane Augustine – W-Inspector Community Policing. “These students they made history today, because it is Corozal first year in being a part of this G.R.E.A.T. program, the join in the five thousand plus student that we had graduated from this program over the past four years.”

Miss Earth Belize To Represent In Nasua, Bahamas
Tomorrow Miss Earth Belize, 20 year old Amber Rivero and 14 other Miss Earth Queens who participated in the 2013 Miss Earth Pageant in Manila, Philippines last December will head out to Nasua, Bahamas. The women were extended the invitation by Miss Earth Bahamas, Vandia Sands, and the Bahamas Beauty Organization. All delegates will have the opportunity to tour the country. The main objective of the visit is or the beauty queens to build worldwide friendship. Rivero is expected to return home on Tuesday July 1st.

Pregnant Woman Caught Inside The Burning Establishment
The tranquil scenery of the historic New Town Barracks in Belize City was quickly disrupted by crackling noises emanating from a massive fire that gutted the Asian establishment known to many as Timmys Bar around 4:00 this morning. In its wake, one female person later identified as 24 year old Jacqueline Arteaga perished in the fire. Arteaga was one of four persons who were in the building when the fire started. The other three persons managed to escape unhurt through their room windows. The fire, which raged for hours, was fuelled by winds from the Caribbean Sea right across from the establishment which presented a challenge for fire fighters and other responders. Timmy’s Bar was on the ground floor and upstairs were dwelling apartments. Unconfirmed reports indicate that the rooms housed women believed to be sex workers who were trapped in their rooms because they were padlocked in.

Statistical Institute Of Belize Hold Press Conference
The Statistical Institute of Belize released their findings in the Consumer Price Index, External Trade and life expectancy rates in a press conference this morning in Belize City. And while the outlook is not good for Belizeans, the institute reported a steady increase of 1.6 percent for the Month of May compared to last year’s indicators. The single largest contributor to the increase were higher transport costs followed by housing, water, gas, food and insurance premiums. Outside of food and energy, there were widespread price pressures as well. Airline tickets were on average 24 percent higher than in May 2013. Prices in home rental also showed an increase of 1.5 percent compared to last year. Utilities such as water tariffs showed a rise roughly by 7 percent. Electricity showed a decrease from last year at 8 percent, this was due to the new tariff that came in effect this year.

Weekly Crop Review For Week Twenty Two
There are more stories ahead but first let’s take a look at the weekly crop review. Carmelita Perez – Reporting June 22nd 2014 marked the end of week 22 of the 2013/2014 sugar cane crop season. The report, provided by the Belize Sugar Industries Limited, shows that for week 22 the factory milled fifty one thousand eight hundred and ninety five tons of cane. To date, the factory has milled a total of one million ninety eight thousand thirty seven tons of cane. Last year the factory milled nine hundred and twenty nine thousand four hundred and sixty three tons cane during the same time frame. Taking a look at sugar production, four thousand three hundred and four tons of the sweetener was produced for week 22. An overall of one hundred and thirteen thousand six hundred and forty eight tons of the product have been produced so far. Last year, the factory produced ninety nine thousand nine hundred and seventy tons of sugar during the 22 weeks of crop.

BSCFA Faces Eight Non-Compliances
Like many other organization’s that fall under the umbrella of Fairtrade, the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association, which represents more than 6,000 cane farmers here in the north, sees a massive benefit. The association receives U.S$60.00 per ton of sugar sold to Fairtrade. This means they are paid the highest premium of all certified Fairtrade organisations worldwide. For the BSCFA, it is a welcomed benefit given that in a country of only 320,000 people, some 50,000 plus are dependent on the sugar industry for survival. When first certified in 2008 the association’s initial audit showed 28 non-compliances leading to an immediate suspension of Fairtrade Certification. Measures set in place to remedy those loop holes and the BSCFA was re-certified.


The Aftermath of the Newtown Barracks Blaze
Only charred remains can be seen following the blaze that consumed three structures in the early morning fire that occurred just after four o’clock on Wednesday morning. Today, about 36 hours later, the business owners are out making their last rounds to see what can be salvaged in the rubble. One of those business owners is Wilson of the popular coffee shop, Pandora. With the incident so fresh, Wilson says it still hasn’t sunk in and the way forward is still unknown. WILSON – Pandora’s Café “I have no idea, no idea at all. We are just waiting for what we can we’ll go from there. It happened so fast yesterday, there’s no plan we couldn’t have a plan. We were not planning on this. The building did not burn down but the whole roof is gone. So this cannot be used for anything else for right now.” RENEE TRUJILLO “Tell me about your loss in terms of assets that you lost; I know that the building wasn’t yours but the business was yours and there’s a lot of equipment and furniture. Was it ensured?” WILSON “We weren’t insured. Right now we don’t know if any of our equipment is usable. When we move in there we hope that some of them are still usable. Hopefully some of the things are still usable because that is a lot. Not just equipment but a lot of our stock is burned or damaged.”

The Life of Jacqueline Arteaga: More Questions Than Answers
It was an inferno that took down three business houses in the Newtown Barracks area in Belize City in the wee hours of Wednesday morning …….but in the wake of its blaze, the fire also claimed the life of a young mother of three children, 21-year-old, Jacqueline Arteaga. The aftermath, some 36 hours later, is seeing the presence of fire officials, police investigators and business owners trying to collect the remnants of what was once their bread and butter…….but for one woman, Maria, she is dealing with a different kind of grief…she is faced with the task of having to bury her daughter, Jacqueline. We spoke with Maria today to get the mother’s perspective and a behind the scenes understanding of who Jacqueline was. MARIA “I don’t want to say that anybody forced her to work anywhere because that is not true. She works whenever she wants. She just came to live here like three months ago. When she came, she came to live with me. She passed through a lot of things and afterwards she met Butchis Mandy and he and Marilyn asked her if she wanted to work, she told them yes and she started to work. She told me, ‘mom, I will work for a few days’ and sometimes when she worked, she only worked one week and then she stopped and then one month after she told me she would work another week. She worked another week and then she stopped and then she told me that Ms. Merilyn would rent her a room there at Kimmie’s Night Club. She used to rent rooms upstairs. She got a room and moved there.”

Trial Date Set For Former Minister, Elvin Penner
Attorney Ellis Arnold and his client Elvin Penner appeared in the court room of Magistrate Aretha Ford this morning in regards to a private prosecution brought by Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action, COLA. A trial date was set and the trial is to commence on July 24th. COLA is leaning heavily on the interim Auditor General Report which was leaked to them a few weeks ago. Penner’s attorney was provided with further disclosure on the matter. However COLA’s Attorney Kareem Musa says that they still are need of other documents from the office of the commissioner of police. Musa says they are still waiting to get their hands on the actual Won Hong Kim Passport which is yet to be brought to the country by Taiwan. HIPOLITO NOVELO REPORTING “COLA’s President, Geovanni Bracket, and Attorney Kareem Musa arrived at about 8:30am. Former Minister of State and the accused Elvin Penner appeared few minutes before 9 o’clock and his attorney, Ellis Arnold, came in a short while after. In the last court session, Musa provided partial disclosure and so today further disclosure was handed over to Arnold. Inside the courtroom, July 24th was set as the trial date. Exiting out of the court, like previous occasions, Penner had nothing to say.” HIPOLITO NOVELO “Mr. Penner can we have a comment?” LOCAL REPORTER “Mr. Penner you are expected to come back here one last time for trial date what is your expectation?”

Digicel Explains Faults in Phone System
BTL customers are experiencing interruption with their Digicell service. Officials of the company say they have been hard at work to ensure that services will be restored as soon as possible. Kevin Hope is the company’s Chief Technology Officer. KEVIN HOPE “Just before 4am today, we had an internal failure on one of our systems that provides power to one of our core network mobile switching equipment that is stationed in our offices in Belmopan. As a result of that, our equipment went out of service and our technical team of engineers and technicians responded and they have been working since then full time restoring service to our customers. So far we have been able to restore a number of the systems, we’re still working on some others to fully restore service and the work is ongoing at this time. Our engineers and technicians are currently fully supported by our external vendor Ericson and so as a complete team, we have all parties fully engaged working on this issue to bring back complete service to our customers. We believe we are taking the right steps at this point and very shortly we are hoping to have all services restored to our customers.” According to General Manager, Customer Service and Public Relations Dionne Miranda customers are being affected in a number of ways.

Thousands of Dollars Deemed ‘Misused’ at Southern Regional Hospital
Nasley Sommerville remains in suspense tonight after a detailed report by the Auditor General found that thousands of dollars were misused under Sommerville’s management at the Southern Regional Hospital. Sommerville is at the middle of the accusations and is expected to be charged. CEO in the Ministry of Health Dr. Peter Allen provided an update. PETER ALLEN “I was actually trying to contact the police in Dangriga just yesterday but we were unable to contact them; we will be trying again today and tomorrow and we will be happy to give you an update as soon as we know exactly what’s happening.“ LOCAL REPORTER “Is there any update in relation to the Public Service Commission having arrived at a decision?” DR. PETER ALLEN “Well as far as I am aware the Public Service Commission has not yet heard the case. My understanding of the particular case is that the concern of the Director of Public Prosecutions was to make sure that anybody else who may be involved or maybe responsible that that would be covered at the same time.”

Thieves Escape with Gold Chain After Store Robbery
A business establishment in the Stann Creek District was robbed on Wednesday. We get the details in this report from correspondent Harry Arzu. HARRY ARZU “A hardware store located on Stanley Drive in this municipality was robbed at gunpoint yesterday shortly after one o’clock. Inside the store at the time were the owner, Isabelle Miranda, his 16-year-old son, Christian Miranda and his 14-year-old daughter, Emily Miranda. Reports are that three men entered the business establishment and held up the owner and his two children at gunpoint. Emily Miranda spoke to Love News about the ordeal. EMILY MIRANDA “When they came in they asked for my dad to come and help them. I called my dad and he came; they then proceeded to ask him for a rake. As he pulled down the rake they pulled out a gun and said ‘’Relax big man’’. My brother proceeded to come with a laptop in his hand and said ‘’Take anything you want’. My brother signaled to me and I ran to my neighbor and started giving the news for everyone to come. By that point I heard a gunshot from which they were aggravating my brother. In the back room they grabbed him and put a gun to his head and the bullet grazed his head. My neighbor’s nephew chased after them on bike. One of their bike chains burst and they ended up double riding; by then they rode away. When I came I just saw my dad and my brother and they were both okay. All they went with was a chain. “

Farmers Want $10 Per Sugar Ton….ASR Says 51 Cents
After a delay of eight weeks for the start of the sugar crop finally on January 13 BSI and the BSCFA signed an interim agreement to resume and conclude a new commercial agreement between the two private entities and expand the scope to include negotiations for the payment for bagasse. The target was to reach an agreement before or by the end of the crop season. That date is fast arriving with the announcement that the crop season will close on July 8. For the most part during the time negotiations were being held we heard the position of the cane farmers who demanded payment of ten dollars for a ton of sugarcane delivered. That proposal was rebutted by BSI some two months ago when the milling company presented a counterproposal in which they claim the most they can pay per a ton of sugar is fifty one cents. As expected that proposition did not settle well among cane farmers. While the BSCFA negotiating team made itself accessible to the media to give updates on the negotiations, BSI only stated its position through a handful of press releases. That is until today, when Financial Director at BSI-ASR Belizario Carballo Jr. appeared on Estereo Amor’s morning show to explain why payment can only be 51 cents per ton of cane. Arturo Cantun reports. ARTURO CANTUN REPORTING BSI and Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association are two private entities. According to Belizario Carballo Jr., for this reason the matters discussed during the negotiations should have been kept private between the two. But because the BSCFA has been making several media appearance and in instances sharing wrong information, BSI decided to explain its position on how it arrived at 51 cents per a ton of cane. Carballo told us they were clear to cane farmers on their bases for their formula.

Isuzu D-Max Stolen From Belmopan Businessman
A businessman from Belmopan is asking the public for assistance in recovering his vehicle that was stolen. Correspondent Fem Cruz reports. FEM CRUZ “49-year-old Belizean businessman, Victor Perdomo, a resident of Belmopan reported that sometime between the hours of 9:30am and 10:45am on Wednesday, June 25, his blue 2003 4-door Isuzu D-Max pickup truck bearing license plate number CYC23058 valued at $55,000 Belize dollars was stolen. His truck was parked at Cardinal’s Hardware located on Cardinal Avenue in Belmopan City when it was taken. The Perdomo family is asking the public for their help by reporting any information they might have to the police or to contact them directly at 601-4743, 802-2221 or 629-1857.”


Penner will Go to Trial!
The Elvin Penner Prosecution is certainly not a smooth ride for the small grassroots organization COLA and their attorney Kareem Musa.  Prior to the leakage of the auditor general’s preliminary report, prosecutors had been scrambling for evidence in a legal maze with road blocks at every corner. In the...

Luke Palacio Responds to PM’s Comments that Palacio is Rude
Members of the newly formed NGO known as the Rod of Correction or ROC also showed their presence at today’s court session. Luke Palacio, president of the NTUCB, attended as a member of ROC. In a press conference on June 11th, the Prime Minister described Palacio as rude and...

Fire Service Defends Approach to Deadly Wednesday Morning Fire
The section of Newtown Barracks between Barrack Road and Wilson Street remains cordoned off today as investigations continue into Wednesday morning’s deadly fire that claimed the life of a pregnant mother of three, Jacqueline Arteaga. The 23-year-old was reportedly too afraid to jump from the top floor where she...

Armed Robbery Hits Dangriga
Three male persons entered a store in Dangriga and fired a shot but left only with a necklace. Dangriga Correspondent Harry Arzu reports. Harry Arzu- Correspondent for Plus TV “Police here are investigating a robbery that occurred at this hardware store located at #90 Stanley Drive in Dangriga.  The...

Statistical Institute Releases Latest National Indicators
The Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) on Wednesday held another in its series of press conferences, this time covering four major batches of statistics: the monthly consumer price index; external trade; news on life expectancy for Belizeans, and the twice-yearly labour force survey. We will start with the last,...

Bandits will Represent Belize in the 2014 Champion League
The Belmopan Bandits, after becoming the National Champions of Belize, have been awarded an opportunity to participate in the upcoming Champions League. However with no official club field, the Bandits relied on the FFB football stadium to meet requirements to participate in the tournament. However, up to the time...

FFB President Says the Federation will Finish Pay the Players
During the world cup selection tournament, the Belize Jaguars gave a stellar performance placing Belize on the football map; and though we’ve never made it to the Gold Cup, it did instill a sort of hope in all Belizean Football fans that someday we will. However, all fanaticism aside,...

Two Teenagers Apprehended for Robbery
Two teenagers, a 15 year old and a 16 year old, have been detained by police following an armed robbery in Belize City yesterday morning. 46-year-old Weibo Liang, a  businessman of West Canal, reported that at about 11:50 a.m., as he opened the door for his shop – Long...

September Celebrations Theme Announced
September Celebrations are not too far off, and so the theme for the 2014 celebrations has already been chosen. “Industrious Hands, Intelligent Minds, Together for Belize!” . That is the theme for Belize’s 216th Anniversary of the Battle of St. George’s Caye and the 33rd Anniversary of Belize’s Independence....

Top PSE Scorers in the West Honoured
The Ministry of Education honoured the top PSE performers for the entire country of Belize yesterday. Today the top performers for the Cayo District division were acknowledged at the Sacred Heart College school gymnasium in San Ignacio. After the ceremony,  we spoke with the top three performers who shared...

Infrastructural Works Continue in San Ignacio
The first phase of works on Burns Avenue in San Ignacio is now complete but the work is not over.  Works are now being done on the upper part of that avenue where BWS has begun to lay pipes on King Street up to the old Benque Road. William...

The Guardian

Young woman Perishes in Fire
An early morning fire on Barrack Road has left 3 business places in ruin, and a 21 year-old woman dead in the blaze. It happened at around 4 a.m. on Wednesday, June 25, 2014. The fire started at Kimmy’s Club which doubles as a bar on the lower flat, and an apartment building on the second floor. The bar had been closed for a few hours, when someone from the neighbourhood alerted Merlyn Moreira, the owner and her common-law husband that a fire was spreading on the lower flat. She had 2 other tenants in the upper flat, and they tried to warn everyone that the building was on fire. When they got out of the building everyone tried to look for Jacqueline Arteaga, who was trapped inside the burning building. The entire structure was wooden, and so by that time, the fire had already destroyed large portions of the building. She and another female tenant was coaxed by the owners and by concerned neighbours for her to jump out of the window, but she refused saying that she was pregnant, and that she didn’t want to hurt her unborn child.

Beggar’s Paradise
Nigel Petillo wants to be involved in just about everything that takes place and its things that happen all over the place. Well he was at it again this weekend as he wanted to make his way to Toledo. The problem is that Petillo claims to be broke. In fact he seems to be broke all the time, except of course when he takes those expensive trips to the Guatemalan side of the border- Flores Peten to be precise. But we are straying from the topic; this weekend Petillo wanted to go to the Toledo district. But broke as he always is, he resorted to his old tactic of begging on Facebook. He is known to beg for phone credits, so when we saw his mendicant ways surface again on the social media, we were not surprised. And because we know that the PUP is somehow behind Petillo, either covertly or overtly, we were also not surprised when the PUP chairman of the Stann Creek West Constituency committee promptly replied to the beggar. Emilio Zabaneh was quickly able to align the PUP's agenda with that of Petillo and offered to help. Of course Zabaneh first had to ask his Dad for the loot to be able to finance Petillo.

Unemployment Rate Falls from 14.2 to 11.1 Percent Women Cont
In every municipality of the country, people are working to develop their community. Therefore, it doesn’t take a statistician to figure out that unemployment is down in Belize. However, it is important to pay attention to the labour force survey conducted by the Statistical Institute of Belize because it tells us much more than unemployment figures. The labour force survey provides useful information such as who are working; where are the jobs available and what types of jobs are available. The Statistical Institute of Belize released its preliminary results for the April 2014 labour force survey on Wednesday, June 25, and it shows that the unemployment rate has decreased from 14.2 percent in September of 2013 to 11.1 percent in April of 2014. (Also down from 11.7 percent in April of 2013) The labour force is made up of everyone 14 years of age and older who is employed, available and looking for work. In April of 2014, 2,753 households were randomly selected to be a part of the survey and responses were obtained from 6,500 individuals 14 years and older. 63.8 percent of those individuals were in the labour force. The others are students, housewives and others who were not available for work. According to SIB, there are now 151,317 people in the labour force which is an increase of 1,883 when compared to April, 2013. There are 93,411 males and 57,906 females in the force. 3,003 more males joined the labour force in 2014 and 1,120 females fell out. The Belize and Cayo Districts are responsible for 57.5 percent of the labour force at 35 percent and 22.5 percent respectively. Orange Walk hosts 12.7 percent, Corozal 12.6 percent, Stann Creek 10.1 percent and Toledo has 7 percent. The Belize District has the highest unemployment rate at 14.3 percent and Toledo has the lowest at 4.1 percent.

More Roads for Belmopan
Residents in the nation’s capital, the City of Belmopan and surrounding communities will soon enjoy a safer and pleasant road infrastructure to serve both residential and commercial activities as a result of the signing of a contract for the rehabilitation/paving of Almond Boulevard and Chiquibul Street. The street infrastructure project, valued at BZ $417,802.00 is financed by the Government of Belize through a loan from the World Bank under the Belize Municipal Development Project (BMDP). Signing the Contract on June 19, at SIF’s headquarters, Belmopan was the Executive Director, Social Investment Fund Mr. William Lamb Jr., and the contractor, Mr. Jimmy Dueck of Synergy Construction of the Cayo District. Other officials present at the signing included the Deputy Mayor, Belmopan City Council, Ms. Anna Guy, Project Coordinator, Mr. Ernest N. Raymond, and the Consultant, Mr. Carlton Young of Young’s Engineering Consultancy. The current state of Almond Boulevard is that the street is unpaved extending 280 metres from Constitution Drive and from the East and intersects with Chiquibul Street that extends southward for 240 metres where it culminates at the intersection with Humming Bird Drive.

Court of Appeals upholds Supreme Court Judgement on ACES case
The Court of Appeal has ruled that the Government of Belize is liable for damages to American Couple Vince and Cherie Chenot-Rose because the Police Department did not do enough to protect their property in Toledo when a mob of Mayan Villagers burnt it to the ground. Readers may remember that on August 30, 2010, 8 year-old Benjamin Rash, and his 11 year-old sister, Onelia, went missing from their village in San Marcos, Toledo. They were selling fruits, and they were last seen in the Toledo District. After they went missing, the entire village joined the Rash family in the search to find them, and a few days later, a “witch doctor” Delfina Alvarez gave them information that they were at the Rose property. Up until September 5, 2010, the Rose couple, who are biologists and wildlife behaviourists, built and managed a sanctuary for problem crocodiles caught all over the country. This wildlife conservation post was called the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary (ACES), and it was located at Forest Home Village, Toledo – just outside of Punta Gorda Town.

Mother refuses to testify against man who injured her child
On Monday, June 23, charges of dangerous harm were withdrawn against Andy Cruz, 35 who was accused of injuring his 1 year old daughter. Cruz had been charged with dangerous harm upon the child on March 15, 2009. In court, prosecutor Leeroy Banner entered a Nolle Prosequi after the child’s mother refused to testify in the trial which was set to start in the court room of Justice Troadio Gonzalez. After the Nolle Prosequi was entered Cruz was set free of the charge.

DPP appeals acquittal of lawmen
The 5 law men who were accused and acquitted of facilitating the biggest drug cargo on record to land in Belize, are back before the courts to try to resist an attempt by the Director of Public Prosecutions to have their case reopened. DPP Cheryl-Lynn Vidal wants them to face a re-trial. In November of 2012, Police Corporal Renel Grant, Corporal Nelson Middleton, Sergeant Lawrence Humes, Customs Boatman Harold Usher, Sergeant Jacinto Roches, and civilian Victor Logan were all put on trial before Justice Denis Hanomansingh for the charge of abetment to commit a crime. They were accused of assisting in the landing of a twin Engine Beechcraft King Air 200 plane in the Bladden area of the Southern Highway on November 13, 2010. On that plane were just over 2,600 kilos of compressed cocaine, which was offloaded, but quick response from law enforcement led to the confiscation of the drugs and the securing of the aircraft.

Nolle Prosequi in Murder trial
On Monday, June 23, 27-year-old Marlon Foreman ran out of the Supreme Court after he was declared a free man by Justice Troadio Gonzalez. Foreman stood accused of the murder of Barney Cunningham which occurred on January 2, 2009. At the time Cunningham, then 20, was on Curl Thompson Street in the Jane Usher Boulevard area helping 42-year-old Edmund Castillo move his family from Baracat Street to Curl Thompson Street when a lone gunman pulled up in the area and opened fire at the group. Cunningham received a single gunshot to the left side of the head and died on January 6 while undergoing treatment. Also injured in the shooting were Edmund Castillo, 42, who was grazed under his chin, Enrique Alvarez, who was shot in the right foot, and Glenford Myers, who was shot to the leg.

Alleged Immigration Fraud Mastermind Released on Bail
The alleged mastermind of an immigration scheme, Marleny Elizabeth Castellanos, 45, and her common-law-husband, Alfredo Marcos, are out of jail after Justice Traodio Gonzalez granted them bail on Friday, June 20. Castellanos is being accused of arranging false immigration documents for herself and numerous others and is facing as much as 40 different immigration charges. She was being held on remand due to the uncertainty of her immigration status and the potential that she is a flight risk. On Friday, June 6, her attorney, Kevin Arthurs, applied for bail at the Supreme Court on behalf of Castellanos and Marcos. Justice Gonzalez ruled on Friday, June 20, that the crown had not provided sufficient grounds to show that the two accused are not Belizeans and that they remain a flight risk. Despite a strong objection from the DPP’s Leeroy Banner, Justice Gonzalez granted Castellanos bail in the sum of $20,000 plus two sureties of $10,000 and Marcos was granted bail in the sum of $10,000 plus two sureties of $5,000.

Jason Joseph Williams Convicted of Firearm Offenses
Jason Joseph Williams, 34, has been convicted of keeping firearm and ammunition without a gun license and handling stolen goods. The charges stem from a search police conducted on Williams on December 24, 2012 near the Princess Hotel and Casino. Williams was with a young child when he was pulled over by officers of the Gang Suppression Unit. According to police report, Sgt. Irma Anderson searched Williams and when she felt what appeared to be a gun in his pants she called Cpl. Daniel Pasqual to search further. Pasqual found a black and chrome 9 mm pistol in Williams’ pants loaded with 14 live rounds. Williams was detained and the child’s mother was called in to take the child home. Williams was charged with keeping a firearm and ammunition without a gun license. The gun, with serial number 317-05478, was traced to Orange Walk businessman, Walter Quinones, who reported his firearm stolen on February 13, 2012. Williams was charged additionally with handling stolen goods. Williams’ trial concluded on Friday, June 20, before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. Donelle Hawke prosecuted the case and called Cpl. Pasqual and Sgt. Anderson as witnesses for the crown.

Will Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth be Set Free?
Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth was convicted on November 1, 2012 of the murder of David White, her common-law-husband. According to reports, on July 15, 2010 White and Longsworth, who lived together at #12 Castle Street, got into an argument around 12 midnight and Longsworth allegedly threw kerosene over him from a bottle. She then lit a lighter and set him on fire. Reports are that White ran out of the house and was followed by Longsworth who tried to out the flames from his body. White was hospitalized for a little over two weeks before succumbing to his injuries at the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital on the morning of August 2, 2010. Longsworth, a mother of three children, was sentenced to life in prison by Justice Adolph Lucas on November 8, 2012. On June 10, 2014 Godfrey Smith appealed Longsworth’s convicition as Appeal Justices Dennis Morrison, Minnet Hafiz-Bertram and Samuel Awich allowed him to enter new evidence into file. Justices Dennis Morrison, Minnet Hafiz-Bertram and Samuel Awich will pass judgment on Friday, June 27.

PC Jesus Marroquin Granted Bail
Police Constable, Jesus Marroquin, is out on the streets after he was released on bail by Justice Traodio Gonzalez. Marroquin is accused of the attempted murder of 19-year-old Elston Arnold. Arnold claims that at about 11 p.m. on Sunday, May 25, 2014 he and three cousins had just left a wake for a friend in Ontario Village and were riding bicycles toward Mount Hope when they saw a brown Mahindra Police pick-up truck passing by. A few minutes later, as they were riding in front of Hill Top Bar, the police truck came back and four officers exited. The officers conducted searches on Arnold and his cousins but nothing illegal was found. Arnold said his cousin Calbert told officer Ricky Valencia that they are from the same Village and he shouldn’t be treating them badly. According to Arnold, Ricky Valencia then shouted something to Calbert who rode off on his bicycle.

FCD reports on Macaw Trafficking in Chiquibul Forest
Last year, during the scarlet macaw breeding season a total of 13 active nests were identified along the banks of the Upper Macal and Raspaculo branch, of which 11 were systematically monitored. The other two nests failed at an early stage of development due to tree structural failure and early nest abandonment for an unknown cause. The monitored breeding pairs laid a total of 24 eggs. Of the 24 eggs laid, 12 hatched; while only 5 chicks successfully fledged the nest. Of the monitored nest 63.63% failed. Nest failure was attributed to tree structural failure (9%), natural predation (27.27%) and poaching (27.27%). The poached nests contained 33.3% of hatchlings, while 16.7% and 8% of the hatchlings were lost due to tree structural failure and natural predation respectively.

PG Town Board finances worsen
The situation at the Punta Gorda Town board is worsening by the day. The Ministry of Local Government has taken steps to appoint a Financial Controller to try to get a grip of the situation in that municipality after the current PUP Mayor, Anthony Fuentes, has proven himself to be completely incompetent. Even as steps are being taken to rescue the situation, things are worsening. The garbage collection in that town is almost non-existent and the garbage that is actually collected is taken to the dump site and thrown in the middle of the road. Even the garbage truck itself leaves a lot to be desired. These days it is seen being driven around the town with one of its wheels missing. The town board does not even have money to buy a tire.

Office of the Prime Minister Responds to...
Belmopan. June 24, 2014. The Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) has noted with concern the continued attacks by some lawyers on Justice of Appeal Mr. Samuel Awich. These attacks, using the Belize Bar Association Resolution as their springboard, are contemptuous and contemptible. They seek to scandalize the Belize Court of Appeal by alleging bias on the part of a member of that court, and may well be actionable by the Director of Public Prosecutions. Indeed, even from the English common law, it is considered contempt to “prejudice mankind [by speech or writing] in favour of or against a party before the case is heard” and the same principle is reflected in the laws of Belize where it is stated to be an offence to write or do anything “with intent to excite any popular prejudice for or against any party to [court] proceedings.” And there are cases pending before the Courts having to do with both (a) the acquisition of BTL and BEL (which case is definitely not at an end) and (b) the Bar Association against the Government of Belize on amendments to the Constitution on appointment of Judges of the Court of Appeal.

Minister Longsworth refurbishing community basketball courts
The Hon. Herman Longsworth, Area Representative for the Albert Constituency and the Minister of State with direct responsibilities for Youth and Sports in partnership with the National Sports Council has started the process of refurbishing community basketball courts in Belize City. The courts that have been refurbished so far include the Yabra Basketball Court that falls directly under the responsibility of the National Sports Council and is also in the Albert Constituency. As part of the refurbishment to the court, the entire playing area was repainted with the official dimensions, free throw and centre line in place, along with a newly installed electrical system. The fence will shortly be repaired and that will add security to the playing surface. Also, the mini-basketball court through Lindo’s Alley also in the Albert Constituency was refurbished. The entire mini-court was painted and the lines for the mini court were also painted. The mini-court will be receiving a new basketball rim and backboard from the Hon. Herman Longsworth, the Area Representative.

San Pedro Tigersharks are National Elite Basketball Champions
The 2014 National Elite Basketball Championship came to an end on Sunday, June 22, out at the R. Angel Auditorium in San Pedro Town, where the home team and budding champions, the San Pedro Tigersharks defeated the Cayo Western Ballaz by the score of 60-52 in the third and final game of the championship series to capture the first ever National Elite Basketball Title. The top scorers for the San Pedro Tigersharks were Ashton Edwards with 22 points, 5 rebounds, and 4 steals; Darwin Leslie with 10 points, 9 rebounds, 1 assist and 2 steals, and Tyrone Edwards with 10 points, 3 rebounds, 6 assists and a steal. For the visiting Cayo Western Ballaz, their top scorers were Farron Louriano with 19 points, 12 rebounds, and 2 steals and Kurt Burgess with 10 points, 13 rebounds, 2 assists and 2 steals.

Katy Sealy captures Gold in Heptathlon at Central American Championship
Belize had participation by members of the Belize Athletics Association at the XXV Central American Senior Championships held at the Estadio Olimpico Palacio de los Deportes UNAH, in Tegucigalpa, Honduras, from June 20-22, 2014. Belize fielded five female athletes, which included Kaina Martinez who competed in the 100metres, 200 metres, 4 x 100 m relay and 4 x 400 m relay; Katy Sealy who competed in the Heptathlon; Gloria Serano who competed in the Shot Put, Javelin and Discus competitions; Alexia Neal who competed in the 100m Hurdles and the 400m Hurdles and Ajahney Carr who competed in the 200metres and 400metres competition.

Karate Federation holds National championship
The Belize Karate Federation held its National Karate Championship sponsored by Olympic Solidarity on Saturday, June 21, 2014, at the Sacred Heart College Auditorium in San Ignacio Town as part of Olympic Day Celebrations. The Federation held events in the Kumite (Fighting) category. In the female age group 12-13 years, 1st place went to Angely Zayden and 2nd place went to Trina Stephens. In the male age group 12-13 years, Caylon Dyck took 1st place, while Vincent Hulse captured 2nd place and in the age group 14-15 years, Ceasar Dyck captured 1st place and Basil Brown captured 2nd place. In the adult male category, in the 67 Kilograms category, 1st place went to Rafael Quiterio and 2nd place went to Christian Harrison. In the 75 Kilograms category, 1st place went to Ascension Hernandez and Peter Friesen took 2nd place.

Holy Redeemer girls and St. Martin’s De Porres boys are Belize District primary schools basketball champions
The 2013-2014 Belize District Primary Schools Basketball Competition came to an end on Friday, June 20, 2014, at the Bird’s Isle in Belize City. In the girls’ championship game, Holy Redeemer School defeated Belize Elementary School by the score of 20-15. The top scorers for Holy Redeemer School were Zaria Jenkins with 12 points and Leeza Russell with 4 points, while the top scorer for Belize Elementary School was Alyanna Musa with 12 points. In the first game of the day in the girls’ competition, Holy Redeemer School advanced to the championship round by winning over Pancotto Primary via the default route. In the second game, Belize Elementary School won handily over Guadalupe RC by the score of 32-13. The top scorer for Belize Elementary School was Alyanna Musa with 8 points, while the top scorer for Guadalupe RC was Shevaun Vaccaro with 4 points.

Softball Federation to host 6th Charles Solis Memorial tourney
The Belize Softball Federation is pleased to announce that the 6th Annual Charles Solis Memorial Softball tourney is scheduled for Sunday, July 6, 2014, at Rogers Stadium, the home of softball, in Belize. The tourney will include BTL the National Female Softball champions of Belize, Blazers the current leaders in this year’s Belize City Competition, along with the other leaders in the Cayo Competition, Belize Rural Competition and the Orange Walk Association competition. The Charles Solis Memorial Tournament will utilise the Double Elimination Format and will commence at 9:00 am. At the end of the tourney, one of Mr. Charles Solis’ sons will present the championship cup and the individual medals to the teams that finish 1st, 2nd and 3rd. The defending champions is Telemedia from Belize City.

BTL fumbles to victory
The 2014 Belize City Senior Female Softball Competition continued on Wednesday, June 18, at Rogers Stadium, the home of softball, in Belize between the defending Belize City champions BTL and the truly newcomer to the competition, the Beacon. BTL got on the scoreboard first when it scored a single run in the top of the 1st inning when second baseman Kimani Williams walked to open the game and later scored on two errors for a 1-0 lead. Telemedia in the top of the 2nd inning added another 5 runs on 2 hits. The inexperience Beacon committed a total of 5 errors. In the top of the 3rd inning, Telemedia then added a single run for a commanding 7 -0 lead. However, in the bottom of the 3rd inning, Beacon scored a three runs on 2 hits to cut the deficit to a 4 runs lead.

Patrick JonesPJ

September Celebrations theme chosen
The September celebrations are still a good two months away, but the National Celebrations Commission today announced the theme for this year’s festivities. According to a press release issued this morning the theme is: “Industrious hands, intelligent minds, together for Belize.” The theme will be used as […]

Man assaulted, teenage boy detained as suspect
A man remains hospitalized in stable condition after being knocked unconscious in what authorities describe as a case of aggravated assault. Denver Stuart was the victim of the assault which happened on Tuesday near the junction of the old Northern Highway and the Phillip Goldson Highway. According […]

Department of Environment prepares new strategy
The Department of the Environment continues to review its plans and strategies for the next decade and a second consultation with stakeholders was held at the Belize Biltmore Plaza today. Where the first consultation on the ten-year strategic development plan and five-year action plan was in broad and […]

Ministry of Health preaches continued awareness on Chikungunya
Chikungunya may have an unusual and funny name, but the pain it is causing in the Caribbean Basin and on the mainland is no joke. As of June 20 more than 175,000 cases have been reported in 29 territories, 5,000 of which were confirmed in 19 territories from […]

U.S. Ambassador touches down to protests
United States Ambassador to Belize, His Excellency Carlos Moreno, spent his first day in the capital responding to concerns from those who believe he has come to promote the rights of lesbian/gay/bisexual/transgender persons (LGBT) on behalf of the American government. On Tuesday of this week five persons, led […]

Teenage boys are suspects in aggravated robbery case
Two teenage boys are in police custody pending investigation of a robbery in Belize City. Police say that around 11:50 am on Wednesday, the proprietor of Long Lucky shop Wei Bo Liang was accosted by two men as he opened his shop door. Police say that the […]

Trial date set in Elvin Penner private prosecution
The private prosecution of Cayo Northeast area representative Elvin Penner by the group Citizen’s Organized for Liberty Through Action, COLA, today moved one step closer to reality. The prosecution, led by attorney Kareem Musa today handed over one final document in its possession and the Magistrate set July 24 for the Penner to return to the Belmopan Magistrate’s Court for hearing of the case. Musa, in a telephone interview, said that even though all of the files in possession of COLA have been handed over in the disclosure process, key files are still missing. These include the police investigation file, the Won Hong Kin file, which COLA claims is in the possession of Elvin Penner, and the actual passport that was issued to Kim while he was in prison in Taiwan.

The Great Forestry Opportunity in Belize
The economy of Belize once depended heavily on forestry-based industry….especially during the second half of the 1800’s and first half of the 1900’s, it provided most of the jobs in what was then a British colony. Logwood for production of dye….and mahogany for furniture production….were the principal contributors to this export-oriented business. In the second half of the 1900’s, pine lumber for the domestic construction industry became of importance, until the pine bark beetle wreaked havoc on our pine forest stocks in the late 1900’s. More recently, the prized rosewood has been in the news…and the mahogany is still the center of our national emblem. Since the middle of the 1900’s, with largely depleted forestry stock….and with the advent of the land reforms of that period….Belize moved away from forestry and towards a more agrarian economy. Did we miss the boat? Did we have to give up apples so that we can have oranges? Could we have had both? Is this question still relevant?


Cave Tubing in Belize
First you will arrive at Cave Tubing Belize’s headquarters to pay and possibly eat lunch or you may eat after the tour depending what time you depart. Then you will hop into one of their 16-passenger vans to head the few miles down the road to the park. Admission to the park costs $5 USD and is included in the cost of the tour. Here you will change into clothing suited for water. I wore my bathing suit with running shorts and a tank top. The water temperature is about 70 degrees Fahrenheit so don’t worry about wearing a ton of layers or even a wetsuit. Your guide will hand you your helmet with headlamp attached and your tube. To reach the beginning of the caves you must walk through the jungle on the nature trails. This is one main things that sets Cave Tubing Belize apart from the other tour companies. Cave Tubing Belize takes the time to show you the various wildlife and flora of the jungle. The walk can vary on time and distance depending on where you start on the river and how fast you walk. You definitely want to wear some sort of water shoes. No flip-flops are allowed. If you don’t have a pair of sandals or shoes that you don’t mind getting wet then you can rent water shoes for about $5 USD.

Limes, I LOVE Limes but Why Are There No Lemons in Belize? Oh Yes, And One Albino Pumpkin
But after seven years in Belize (great years, years that I am in NO WAY likening to prison), I think I am almost starting to get it. Sure I miss things more than lemons. Like my best friend TIVO (I still press the imaginary pause button on my remote control) or magazines and newspapers or book stores but your mind has a way of fixating on things it can’t have and making you want them. But lemons are just not really sold on Ambergris Caye. And they have a different distinct taste that just fits in certain dishes. So when I spotted a rare bin of them in Greenhouse yesterday. 75 cents each I bought 2…to flavor water with. And I walked out hell-bent on finding out why there are no (well…not many) lemons in Belize.

Good Neighbour Belize Takes Helm of SICA
Prime Minister Dean Barrow recently travelled to the Dominican Republic to assume the presidency of the Central American Integration System, or SICA as it is more widely known, in a move that furthers Belize‘s reputation as a significant player in the Central American region. The closer ties envisioned by SICA member states also bodes well for regional tourism, and especially throughout the Mundo Maya, home of the ancient Maya civilisation that encompassed Belize, Mexico, Guatemala, Honduras and El Salvador. In addition to ease of travel across today’s borders, we hope that closer ties also mean that Belize’s calls for strong environmental and responsible travel models are heard and acted upon. SICA, Sistema de la Integración Centroamericana,came into existence on February 1, 1993 as the economic and political organisation ofCentral American states. Its goals areto enhance cooperation and further the aims of peace, political freedom, democracy and economic development in the region.

Easy Recipes for Isla Bonita – Jalapeno Chicken
Brown chicken in oil on both sides. Place in a 9×13 baking dish. In a blender combine wine, sour cream, flour, garlic, salt, pepper, cumin, and peppers. Blend until smooth to make sauce. Pour sauce over chicken breasts, then sprinkle cheese over sauce and top with the onion rings. Bake covered at 325 degrees for one hour.

International Sourcesizz

BC High students build a house in Belize
Luke Tonry of Canton, Patrick O'Donnell of Duxbury, Hamza Jastania of Kingston, Brian Collins of Quincy and Brian Tung of Randolph, juniors at Boston College High School, recently returned from building a house for a woman in Belize. They were among 12 students and two teachers, Shawn Ahern of Boston and John Sullivan of Weymouth, who spent the first week of their summer vacation building a home for Josefina Garcia. The volunteers went to Belize to help the Hand in Hand Ministries build homes for residents in Belize City. Founded by two brothers, the group provides housing for people in Appalachia and Central America. The students also visited and delivered shoes to the Hand in Hand Outreach Center, which provides day care and preschool services for poor children. The shoes were bought with money raised from a bake sale and video game tournament.

Shrimp association secures funding for ASC certification
Thanks to funding from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH), the Belize Shrimp Growers' Association is preparing member farms for Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) assessment. The IDB funding is through Compete Caribbean, a programme to support private sector development and competitiveness in 15 Caribbean countries. The Belize Shrimp Growers Association expects eight farms, representing 89 per cent of shrimp farms and more than 95 per cent of total farmed shrimp production in Belize, to enter assessment against the ASC Shrimp Standard later this year. Independent, third-party pre-assessment against the ASC standard for a number of the shrimp farms was carried out by the certification body SCS Global Services. The Belize Shrimp Growers Association has been working with Mauricio Mejia, WWF Mesoamerican Reef programme officer for aquaculture, to help the farms develop better management practices and reduce their environmental impact.


Video: Project Serve Belize 2014 - director's cut, 1hr12min.
In Feb 2014, a historical basketball game was played at the King's Children's Home in Belmopan, Belize. This single game would become the defining moment for countless young people...but this epic moment almost never happened. Follow the journey of 24 Canadians as they attempt to give a priceless gift to a group of kids who deserve it more than anything. It is a beautiful story of love, adventure, risk, determination and service.

Video: Garifuna Collective -African Festival- Germany 2014, 10min.
Belize's Garifuna Collective onstage @ The African Festival 2014 in Germany... Here is the begining of that Festival Viel Temperament, schnelle Rhythmen und unbändige Spielfreude -- wenn die Band aus Belize in Mittelamerika loslegt, geht das sofort in die Beine. Mit ausdrucksstarkem, mehrstimmigen Gesang und breit angelegter Perkussion feiern Garifuna Collective die ganze Bandbreite ihrer Kultur. Als Nachfahren entflohener Sklaven aus Afrika und karibischer Inselvölker entwickelten die Garifuna ganz eigene Stilformen, die sie unabhängig und stolz gegen so manchen Kolonialherren verteidigten.

Video: Life in Belize Informational Webinar, 1hr4min.
How is healthcare in Belize? What about the QRP or Qualified Retired Persons Program? How about offshore banking? Our experts and community members answer these questions and more. Get to know the waterfront second home and retirement community of Orchid Bay, located in Belize's Corozal district.

Video: Matachica & Gaia Resorts, 4min.
Two sister resorts offer complete experience of Belize from beach setting to forest eco-destination Matachica & Gaia Resorts are two sister properties in Belize that provide very different Belizean settings and when paired together, offer a full 360-degree Belizean getaway, from active adventure to seaside indulgence. Matachica Resort & Spa is nestled on a secluded beach facing the world's second largest barrier reef and offers intimate villas and casitas vibrantly colored with thatched roofs and breathtaking views. Gaze at the Caribbean while swinging in a hammock, lie by the pool, dine at the award-winning Mambo Restaurant, hike, bike, scuba dive, and so much more. GAÏA Riverlodge is located in the scenic Mountain Pine Ridge Forest Reserve and has long been one of Belize's most celebrated eco-tourism destinations. Drenched in natural beauty, this resort overlooks spectacular waterfalls, brilliant green forests and beautiful gardens. Exotic, comfortable cabanas are situated throughout the grounds and there is a fantastic restaurant and bar, plus tons of Belizian adventure just minutes away.

Video: Shark Hole 1 Belize - June 2014, 1min.
110 feet cave dive in Southern Belize.

Video: Belize Scuba Trip 2013 Waynes 12 Min Ver FINAL, 12min.

Video: Holding Stingrays in Belize 2014 Cruise, 2min.
Holding Stingrays in Belize 2014 Cruise

Video: Supreme Court Belize Mediation (Spanish), 7min.
The Mediation Process (Spanish) by Supreme Court Belize

Video: Supreme Court Belize Mediation (English), 6min.
The Mediation Process. by Supreme Court Belize

Video: Fresh from Belize | Starfruit Mango Pineapple Juice | GMO Free, 6min.

June 26, 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

Belize receives funding to train guides in Birding
The Multilateral Investment Fund (MIF) of the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) has provided $2.6 million to be divided between the governments of Belize, Guatemala, Paraguay and the Bahamas as part of an initiative to promote Birding. As part of the project, tour guides will be trained in proper birding techniques and practices to promote ecotourism activities in their respective countries. The project was launched on Wednesday, June 18th at the Radisson Fort George Hotel in Belize City with representatives from the participating countries and IDB present. Belize Audubon Society will be overseeing the project, and Executive Director, Amanda Burgos was present to speak on the importance of the project. “The IDB bird-based tourism project is an opportunity to form stronger linkages between protected areas systems and the tourism sector. This project will demonstrate the economic value of our protected areas to local communities through job creation and other economic enterprises associated with an improved tourism product,” said Burgos.

Actress Denny Mendéz spotted in San Pedro
The San Pedro Sun has spotted actress and former Miss Italy Denny Mendéz vacationing on Ambergris Caye along with fiancé Oscar Generale (producer). Denny is enjoying the fine hospitality of Victoria House Resort. The newly engaged couple was spotted on Monday June 23rd taking an evening stroll on the dock of the resort and sharing laughs. Generale proposed to Mendéz last month at the annual Cannes International Film Festival with the help of friends John Travolta and wife Kelly Preston. Rumor has it the couple is considering tying the knot here on La Isla Bonita! One of Denny’s most noteable roles was in Oceans 12 (alongside Clooney, Pitt and Damon). Generale’s numerous producing credits include Casino Jack.

San Pedro Red Cross hosts HIV Prevention Workshop
On Friday, June 20th, the San Pedro Red Cross hosted an HIV prevention workshop as part of a “Street Beat” activity held at the San Pedro Lobster Festival on Saturday, June 21st. The workshop was held at El Divino Restaurant from 9AM to 4PM and was aimed to educate community members on HIV so that they can in turn educate others. Of the 11 people that participated in the workshop, eight were teens. San Pedro Red Cross members Shirlee Arnould and Mike Memeo officiated the workshop. Both had been previously trained at the Belize Red Cross Youth Agents for Change “Street Beat” Training and Activity back in December 2013. Throughout the workshop, participants received vital knowledge on how HIV is contracted and on ways to prevent the spreading of the disease. The group also shared common misconceptions of HIV. Participants had an open discussion on the stigma people with HIV suffer.

Ambergris Today

Carlos Moreno New U.S. Ambassador to Belize Presents Credentials
On Tuesday, June 24, 2014, at the Belize House, the Governor General of Belize, His Excellency Sir Colville Young received the letters of credence of the new United States of America Ambassador to Belize, His Excellency Carlos Moreno. In his presentation, Ambassador Moreno expressed his desire to work with the Government of Belize on “matters of mutual interest, issues relating to youth, culture, education, health and commerce”. He further stated that there is great potential for continuing strong relations between the two countries. The Governor General welcomed the Ambassador and thanked him for his kind words of friendship and cooperation. He also expressed particular interest in building relations as it relates to youth.

Hollywood Producer Oscar Generale Vacations in Ambergris Caye with Former Miss Italy Denny Mendez
The Hollywood producer, nicknamed the “King of Product Placement”, Oscar Generale, was recently caught vacationing on La Isla Bonita, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize with his beautiful girlfriend Denny Mendez. The couple was spotted romantically walking down the beach by Victoria House. Denny Mendez and Oscar Generale got engaged on May 22, 2014, at the Cannes Film Festival and it is rumored that the couple wants to wed here here on our beautiful Isla Bonita. Denny Mendez is a Dominican-born Italian beauty queen turned model and actress who was Miss Italy 1996 and represented Italy in the 1997 Miss Universe pageant. Denny has become a sensation in the modeling world, adorning the fine wears of Alberta Ferretti, Ferre and Roberto Cavalli, to name a few. Denny career followed into the likely path of acting and has landed multiple roles in Italy, as well as Ocean’s Twelve (starring George Clooney, Brad Pitt and Matt Damon).

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Dia de San Pedro Fishing Rodeo 2014
Sunday 29, 2014. Fishing time 6:00a.m. To 5:00p.m. Scale will be open until 6:00p.m. for more information call Jennie at 651-3850.

The U.S. Embassy Belmopan is now harvesting a free, renewable, sustainable and high-quality resource… rainwater
The rainy season is upon us and the final preparations are being made on the new water catchment system. The 10 tanks hold up to 1500 gallons of rainwater which will be utilized throughout the year for non-potable purposes. The project was launched this year in May. With an average yearly rainfall of 80” in Belize, we expect to capture an estimated 30,000 gallons per year. We are excited to see this project come to life at Embassy Belmopan. In addition to being environmentally responsible, conserving water will promote savings in utility costs and provide an excellent back-up source of water for emergencies. What are you doing in your homes and communities to conserve and live more efficiently?

Diamante service industry night at Fidos
July 5th at 9pm. No speeches, no promotions, no strings attached. Just free beer for an hour.

National Youth Orchestra rehearsing Tchaikovsky's 1812 Overture and Pirates of the Caribbean
Last Saturday at the Pallotti School of Music, Belize City. We are preparing for a concert with MUSAID on August 27, 2014 at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts. (5 photos)

Channel 7

Pregnant Mother of Two Perishes In Fire: the Timeline
Early this morning, a pregnant mother of two perished when the building she was living in caught on fire. Witnesses say she refused to jump to safety because she was pregnant. 24-year-old Jacqueline Arteaga lived upstairs of Kimmie's Club on Newtown Barracks. At 4:15 am a fire started and she was trapped inside. The story of how she met her death in the sea front apartment is the tragedy of tonight's news, but we begin first with the troubling part of the story: and that is the fire Department's response: was it adequate, and could more have been done to save property, or even her life? We have video of the earliest moments captured by a friend of the newscast and area resident, Leo Matute – and Jules Vasquez starts building the timeline from before the fire truck arrived: Jules Vasquez Reporting This is the fire at 4:48 am – it's already in free burn and the fire truck hasn't come yet. The Kimmie's building is engulfed as electrical wires crackle. Dawn hasn't broken yet, and the strong easterly wind is driving the flame unto the adjoining three story, Giovanni Smith building – which is also wooden.

The Ruinous Aftermath of a Deadly, Costly Fire
And that loss of life is the real tragedy in this costly blaze. Property can be replaced or rebuilt, but Jacqueline Arteaga's life cannot be returned. There are many questions surrounding her death in that apartment atop a nightclub. Today, Daniel Ortiz tried to find answers: Daniel Ortiz Reporting At 9 this morning, 5 hours after started, the Fire Department was still on the scene trying to ensure that the fire was completely extinguished. Police blocked off the section of Barrack Road in front of the remains of the buildings. Investigators from both the fire and police departments were on the scene until 4:30 this evening, still canvassing for evidence. Important evidence, important because in this fire, a person perished inside the burning wreckage of Kimmie's Bar. 21 year-old Jacqueline Arteaga was inside one of the rooms in the upstairs flat of the building, and when the blaze engulfed the entire structure, she was trapped. She was the only person out of 4 who didn't make it out in time.

Auditor General Prelim. Report Finally Leaked To Media: Some Eye-Catching Stuff
And changing subjects now – we turn to the Immigration scandal. Two weeks ago COLA had a press conference disclosing the major findings of the Auditor General's Investigation into irregularities at the Immigration Department. Well today, on the eve of what may be their last stand in the private prosecution at Belmopan Magistrate's Court, they released the document to the media. It is a 27 page document dating back to March of this year. We looked at the interesting parts of the preliminary report: Jules Vasquez Reporting The preliminary report from the Auditor General notes on the very first page, that they quote, "encountered challenges regarding lack of cooperation." It says the Director Immigration Maria Marin quote, "demonstrated blatant disrespect for my office" End quote. It goes unto say that she quote, "found ways to evade requests for the accessing or records", and when asked, quote, "she stated that the records were with the minister," end quote. On page 5 the report notes that quote, "Minister Elvin Penner signed several nationality certificates that were not recorded on the nationality register."

Unemployment Down, But Only Slightly
The latest unemployment figures were released today by the statistical Institute of Belize. It's called the Labour Force Survey and it's done every year in April and September. This year's survey sampled employment patterns from within a workforce of 151,317 persons. The survey found that sixteen thousand of them are unemployed – which is down slightly from last year April. The Deputy Director explained: Dr. Leopold Perriott - Deputy Director-General "In April 2014, there were 16,730 persons unemployed in the country of Belize. This is down from 17,375 persons in April 2013. So, the unemployed persons are down very slightly. The national unemployment rate is 11.1% as of April 2014, and that's down very slightly from April 2013. In April 2013, the unemployment rate was 11.7%. So, there is a slight decrease in the unemployment rate. The highest unemployment rate was recorded in the Belize District at 14.3%, which is up substantially from April 2013. In April 2013, it was 11.6%. The lowest unemployment rate was recorded in Toledo District as 4.1%; this is substantially down. In 2013, it was 8.0%, and so, it's down dramatically, but that's due mainly to people dropping out of the labour force, dropping out from the unemployed persons, just become not in the labour force. For the Creoles, it's 16.3%, which basically is what it was in April 2013. The Garifuna, the rate has gone up to 18%, from 12.8%, the Mestizo, 9.1%, down a little bit from 10%. It's virtually the same. The Maya, the rates have fallen dramatically, 4.5%, and I alluded to this. Perhaps, what happened was that the labour force, people just left the labour force and basically gave up. The unemployment rates for women is 19.4%, the unemployment rate for men is 5.9%, and this is basically what has been happening over the years."

S.C. Smith On Office Of Prime Minister's Defence of Awich
Last night we told you about the extraordinary press release on the controversial tenure of Justice Samuel Awich from the Prime Minister's Office. What made it unusual was the suggestion that contempt of court could be invoked by the DPP. Well today there was a lot of blowback on this – and the opposition led the way with a statement condemning the Prime Minister's release. IT calls the PM's release "bullying and intimidation" and says it is "ugly, divisive and unacceptable." This morning we spoke to the PUP's National Campaign Manager – who is also a big part of the anti-Awich legal movement, Godfrey Smith. His words were very similar to those on the press release: Godfrey Smith - Defends Bar Association's Resolution "I think it is embarrassing to the Prime Minister. I think it is irresponsible for what was said in that statement to have been said. I think it is wrong to use such a high office to issue not so veil threats of criminal action against individuals who speak out, who exercise their freedom of expression, to speak out about a particular issue like the continued tenure of the judge based on a bar Association resolution which went to the process strictly to the process of extending the judge. And I think again, the open threat - not veiled at all - that a course of action will be taken to effectively deal with the Bar Association, I think is something that can be characterised as a modus operandi of the Office of the Prime Minister. And it is divisive and, as I said, scandalous, embarrassing to that high office and plain wrong."

Opposition Leader on Office of PM: "Absolute Craziness"
The case was fully argued and the Supreme Court decision will be handed down at some point in July. Keeping it on Awich, this evening, the Leader of the Opposition made himself available to the media to discuss his party's position on the PM's statement. In that statement, reference was made to the 18 persons who attended the meeting of the bar – calling it a puny minority. The Leader of the Opposition referred to the statement generally as "crazy": Hon. Francis Fonseca - Leader of the Opposition "It's absolute craziness, at a time when people all across the country are calling on Mr. Barrow and his government to deal with the corruption in his Government, and to deal with Mr. Penner. That is the individual he should be talking to the DPP about, providing evidence and providing, ensuring that there is a successful prosecution of that individual. Instead, he's threatening and trying to intimidate the Bar Association of Belize. So, it's absolute nonsense; it's craziness. I understand in the release that the Government put out - the Prime Minister put out, he talked about a minority, and a puny number of people representing the lawyers of Belize.

Man Convicted For Firearm Offence
And going now from high court controversy to low court convictions, Twenty-nine year old Darren Dawson, a Brodies employee, was sentenced to 5 years today by Chief magistrate, Anne Marie Smith after she found him guilty of discharging a firearm in public. It happened around 5:30 p.m. on May 27, 2013. The main witness, Police Sergeant Keith Clarke, testified that he was standing on the back verandah of his house when he saw Dawson fire shots at another man on Neal Pen Road. The investigators retrieved 14 expended shells from the scene.

Conorquie Was Electrocuted Trying To Steal Electricity
Police have confirmed that 33-year-old Ernest Lincoln Conorquie died of electrocution. As we told you last night, he climbed a lamp-post beside his house on Rivero Street on Sunday night trying to steal electricity when he got a shock and fell into a drain. He was found dead in the drain on Monday morning. Police say a post mortem shows that he was electrocuted.

PSE Tops In Bze District Honoured
Two weeks ago, we showed you the top performers of this year's Primary School Exams. Today was finally the day when the Ministry of Education honoured the top 25 performers in the Belize District. Education Minister Patrick Faber told the media that he's encouraged by this year's results: The Ministry will hold award ceremonies for the best performers in the western, northern and southern regions tomorrow.

Hon. Faber On PSE Errors
In the north, Louisiana Government School's Jose Arciga should be front and centre. He's one of the top finishers in his district, but due to an error the original test results didn't even have him in the top 30. Today, when the Minister of Education was asked about it, he reiterated that the scores were preliminary, and every year there are few errors which are ironed out. He says that the Ministry allows a grace period for any challenge to the scores: Hon. Patrick Faber - Minister of Education "Every year we do have queries. I don't want anybody to run away with the idea that this is not normal. In fact, if you look at the press release - the release that came along with the grades of the Primary School Exams, not only this year - it says preliminary. The reason why we say preliminary is because we give the time period for the grades to be queried.

Hon. Faber On Teacher Redundancy
And while we had the opportunity we asked Patrick Faber about the consolidation of certain subject areas of study among three Belize City High Schools: Sadie Vernon, Maude Williams and Excelsior. As we've reported, all these 3 schools will pool their resources to streamline resources and maximize subject offerings. As a part of the streamlining, 12 teachers from the different schools were declared redundant. Today, when we asked about it, he said that it was a tough decision which had to be made: Hon. Patrick Faber – Ministry of Education "You will recall that we had a press conference on this, and that we made it quite clear that no teacher would be let go based on lack of qualification or qualifications even though at the time, I did lament that indeed the majority of the teachers teaching at these three schools in fact were not professionally trained. But that was not the reason on which we based our decisions. In fact what we did, we looked at the curriculum that is being offered and you saw that in great detail at the press conference and we tried to fit as best as we could the teachers of the sixty-one of them into the delivery of that curriculum. That as you now know caused the issue of us having to displace, as you put it, twelve teachers. But as we said these schools were in fact overstaffed from the beginning. I remind people. Sometimes, we want the system to be fixed, and we're shedding tears now and crying for - and I don't want to be unkind to the teachers because of course, they are probably very good at what they do in some respects, and every dedicated. But, if you are not trained, and if fact, if you're in this position where you're assisting the process of developing education and making it better, then we can't make omelettes if we don't break a few eggs. So, I want to remind people of that. When we talk about change, sometimes, change brings with it some unpleasantries.""

CWU and CPBL Sign Agreement
This morning in the Pomona Valley, the Christian Workers Union and Citrus Products of Belize Limited signed a collective bargaining agreement. According to a release, the agreement covers just under 100 workers at the peak of the citrus season at the processing plants operated by CPBL. Seen here signing are CWU General Secretary Floyd Neal, CWU President Audrey Matura-Shepherd, CPBL Chief Financial Officer Kent Herrera and CPBL Chief Administration Manager Nikita Usher.

Nessie Young Has Young Girl Money
She may be in her 70's but Nessie Young has young girl money, after she walked away with the Fantasy 5 Jackpot of $353,000 today. Today, she told us she never expected to win when she bought her ticket with the numbers, 3, 10, 19, 25, 30 – which are just a few of her favourites: After taxes, she'll get to keep 300 thousand and fifty dollars. Nessie Young's husband, Henry is the former UDP Minister and founder of Bird's Isle. At its next drawing, the Fantasy 5 jackpot reverts to $150,000 dollars.

Channel 5

Pregnant woman perishes in a massive fire in the City
A twenty-three year old mother of three tragically perished this morning in a massive fire which completely destroyed two large buildings on Newtown Barracks in Belize City. Jacqueline Arteaga, three [...]

2 businesses gutted to the ground – origin of fire under investigation
Following this morning’s blaze, the owners of both Kimmie’s Bar and Business Computer Systems looked through the wreckage to see if anything could be salvaged. That seems unlikely, because the [...]

Bucket brigade saves Hunter Lane house from burning down
While all attention was on the main blaze which engulfed the buildings and killed one young woman, there was much drama being played out in Hunter’s Alley beside and behind [...]

Opposition Leader blasts the Prime Minister for attacking the Bar
A release from the Office of Prime Minister Dean Barrow late Tuesday evening has stirred a hornet’s nest in the Bar Association. The release targets current and past presidents of [...]

Francis Fonseca says action of PM typical of U.D.P. government
While Fonseca vouched for the characters of all three attorneys named in the Prime Minister’s response, he says that the behavior is typical of government.  According to the Leader of [...]

Former Bar President says PM release is a distraction from real issue
  As we told you, former President of the Bar Andrew Marshalleck is specifically named in the release. Today, he told us that the release is just a red herring [...]

Andrew Marshalleck says appointments in judiciary are of concern
Three persons are named in the Prime Minister’s release – Eamon Courtenay, Andrew Marshalleck and Jackie Marshalleck. But whether or not that was an attempt to get personal, Marshalleck remains [...]

Attorney says PM’s attack is wrong in every way
Attorney Godfrey Smith also weighed in on the release from the Office of the Prime Minister, and he wasn’t bashful about it. Smith says that the PM deciding to enter [...]

Joblessness decreased in the City, but increased in the districts
The latest figures on unemployment were released this morning by the Statistical Institute of Belize. It shows a nominal drop in joblessness compared to the same period last year. The [...]

Attorney speaks on application before the court for appointment of Justice Awich
It is not often that judges’ names are bandied about in the public forum, largely because they are considered sacrosanct. Speaking on the conduct of those judges is a walk [...]

Belize City man electrocuted
Police are reporting a case of electrocution in the city. Despite warnings by the utility company against the practice of illegal connections, thirty-three year old Ernest Caniquie of Rivero Street [...]

Leroy Samuel Ruiz pleads guilty to fishing without a license
Twenty-seven year old Ladyville fisherman, Leroy Samuel Ruiz is in plenty trouble with the law; this morning he pleaded guilty to fishing in the Glovers Reef Marine Reserve without a [...]

Stabbing in the south leaves 2 men critical
In the south, two men ended in the Punta Gorda hospital following a stabbing incident. Twenty-four year old Eden Mejia was involved in a confrontation with twenty-six year old Jordy [...]

The National P.S.E. Awards
Young Ashton Tillett from Crooked Tree set the standards high this morning when he was honored as this year’s top scorer for the Primary School Examinations. It was not by [...]

Education Ministers speak on errors in P.S.E. results
As we said earlier, twenty-five primary school students from across the country were honored at today’s national P.S.E. Award ceremonies in Belize City. And that included Jose Arciga from Louisiana [...]

Minister says school boards determined 12 terminated teachers
Minister Faber was also asked about the plight of teachers who were dismissed as a result of the merger of three Belize City high schools.  It’s an unfortunate situation says [...]

If You Can Sing It Bring It!
If you can sing it, bring it…  our sensational new entertainment show premiered as promised on Tuesday night with recorded auditions of those artists who dared to step up to [...]


US Ambassador Arrives In Belize
US Ambassador to Belize Carlos R. Moreno has arrived in the country to take office for three years. He arrived on Saturday June 20th and today he presented his credentials at the Belize House, where the Governor General of Belize, His Excellency Sir Colville Young, received the letters. The new US Ambassador to Belize was born in Los Angeles on November 4th, 1948, and is married to Christine Moreno and has two children Keiko and Nicholas. He served as an Associate Justice on the California Supreme Court from 2001 to 2011. From 1998 to 2001, Ambassador Moreno served as a United States District Judge in the Central District of California, nominated to the bench by President Clinton.

BSCFA Falls Under Non-complaince
There is news emerging from the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association today after they were once again audited by the Fairtrade officials of FLOCERT. The association was found with eight non-compliances but officials at the association refrained from commenting on the matter today. By checking compliance with Fairtrade Standards, FLOCERT ensures that relevant social and environmental standards are met and that producers receive the Fairtrade Minimum Price and Premium. If the association does not meet compliance certification, their benefits may be withdrawn by Fairtrade. We will have more on this story in tomorrow’s newscast.

Six Year Old Kidnapped In Benque Viejo Del Carmen
A Jasmine Alert was sent out today for 6 year old Jermany Yoni Cancinos of Benque Viejo Del Carmen. This morning around 8:30 they received a report from the father of the six year old Guatemalan girl where he reported that his child was taken away by a female from her school at the Sevent Day Adventist in Benque. Reports are the child was taken in a blue Kia by force. Of note is that the Jermany’s parents are separated and she was living with her father who has custody. Police have interviewed a few students and the father of the child and have contacted the Guatemala Authorities who shared light on the situation. ASP Dinsdale Thompson, Officer Commanding Benque Viejo Police says the abduction reveals that it stemmed from a family dispute. ASP Dinsdale Thompson, Officer Commanding Benque Viejo Police “What we got from them is that the young lady who came to the school and took the child away is relative to the mom who is in the U.S at this present moment, she is not in Guatemala or in Belize. Where the child is we don’t know at the present moment and we do not know who has her.

Chikungunya A Threat To Belize
The Ministry of Health announced today that they will be holding a press conference on Thursday regarding the emerging threat of Chikungunya disease, which is now quickly spreading throughout the Caribbean. Reports show that the virus has recently spread to 17 countries in the Caribbean, including Haiti and Cuba, where the number of chikungunya cases now tops 189,000, according to the Pan American Health Organization. And as of last week, 80 cases of chikungunya have been reported in 13 U.S. states.

Weight Loss Products To Be Pulled Off The Shelves, Says MOE
If you are one of those persons who rely on weight loss products to lose those extra pounds, then we suggest you pay keen attention to the following report. Several weight loss and health products are currently being pulled off the shelves, according to the Ministry of Health. A release states that the Ministry has received public notification from the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on products that consumers are not advised to purchase. These items include; Dr. Ming’s Chinese Capsule, 7 Days Herbal Slim, Sliming Diet Berry Plus, Asset Extreme, SlimEasy Herbs Capsule and Meizitang Citrus. FDA laboratory confirms that these products contain Sibutramine, a controlled substance removed from the market in October 2010 for safety reasons.

Orange Walk Town Council Hold Neighborhood Meetings
By and large there have been a number of complaints and concerns from the public as it relates to the development and upkeep of the town. There is a platform for these matters to be tabled that is offered by the Town Council itself. That platform is neighborhood meetings that the current council has been holding even before entering office. They are about to hold their 26th meeting on Thursday and Deputy Mayor Ian Cal says it is one of the first of twelve meetings they plan to hold in this year in each zone within the town. Ian Cal – Deputy Mayor “We are holding neighborhood meetings in different areas in town, one to hear from the residence and to get their feed back to their concerns, suggestions even complains and we as a council don’t have all the answers so we believe it is important to keep in contact with the public, that is something we campaigned on, something that we promised the residence that we will do and we have been doing it.”

US Embassy Holds Training For The National Forensic Science Service Department Of Belize
The Belize Police Department has been riddled with challenges including lack of or limited resources, public relations, or worse, corruption. But perhaps one of their weakest links is the lack of capacitated scenes of crime investigators that has led to countless criminal cases to be thrown out of court and limited successful prosecutions. This may change to some level, or at least that is the hope, after all scenes of crime technicians in the country complete an intense one year training on Forensic Crime Scene Investigation. The Training is being hosted by the National Forensic Science Service Department and the US Embassy. The Executive Director of the International Crime Scene Investigators Association, Hayden Baldwin, will facilitate the course. Baldwin has an impressive resume after working as Master Sergeant at the Illinois State Police, Supervisor and Head of Crime Scene, trained at the La Salle University in Mandeville LA, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) and the Crime Scene International. With the assistance of our colleagues from Krem in Belize City, we bring you what Baldwin says the technicians will be focusing on during the course in this morning’s launch.


Retired Woman Claims Fantasy 5 Jackpot
A 76-year-old woman of Belize City claimed over three hundred thousand dollars this morning at the office of Brad’s Gaming Company after scoring the five winning numbers in the Fantasy 5 Jackpot Game. Love News met up with Nessie Young today where she shared with us her sentiments on her win as well as how it came about for her. RENEE TRUJILLO “What are you feeling right now?” NESSIE YOUNG “I don’t feel anything because I can’t believe it. I just choose the numbers at random, numbers I used to like to buy when it first started. I used to win three or four pieces. One time I won the four numbers and I couldn’t believe it.” RENEE TRUJILLO “When did you find out?” NESSIE YOUNG “This morning after I had my breakfast, I decided to call and ask the place what played, then I said, ’Let me go look at it to make sure’.” RENEE TRUJILLO “So, you said you had one ticket, which was numbers you selected and that the other one which was a quick pick. The winning ticket was the quick pick or your selected numbers?” NESSIE YOUNG “The one I selected.”

Mechanic Remanded for Aggravated Assault
Thirty-eight year old Ainsworth Dawson, a former auto mechanic for the Police Department, was remanded to Belize Central Prison today after he appeared before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith and was arraigned on charges of aggravated assault, threat of death and harm. Dawson pled not guilty to the charges. He was remanded into custody until July 29. The incident occurred on June 22 in Ladyville. According to the allegation, Dawson pointed a 16 gauge shot gun at his wife and threatened to kill her. It is further alleged that Dawson choked her until she lost consciousness. She was taken to the hospital where the doctor who examined her classified the injury to her neck as harm.

5 Years for Discharging Firearm in Public
Twenty-nine year old Darren Dawson became an inmate of Belize Central Prison today when he was found guilty of discharging a firearm in public and was sentenced to five years by the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. The main witness, police sergeant Keith Clarke, testified that at around 5:30 p.m. on May 27, 2013, he was standing on the back verandah of his house on Neal Pen Road when he saw Dawson firing shot at another person with black handgun. He said Dawson was dressed in a white t-shirt and black short pants. The police retrieved 14 expended nine millimeter shells from the scene. Dawson testified and claimed that at the time of the incident he was at home watching television. But under cross examination he said that he told the police that it was he who was being shot at.

Senior Counsel Points Out Flaws in Judicial System
This morning, Senior Counsel Godfrey Smith on behalf of BCB Holdings filed an application in the Supreme Court to Challenge a decision made by the Judicial and Legal Services Commission in regards to a complaint made against Justice of Appeal Samuel Awich in 2012. The nature of the complaint is in regards to allegations of misbehavior and inability by Awich. Smith says that the Commission should have submitted the complaint to the Belize Advisory Council which was not done. Here is how he explained it. GODFREY SMITH “In 2012 a complaint was made to the Judicial and Legal Services Commission about Justice Awich. The complaint was that the Judicial and Legal Services Commission ought to exercise its powers under the Belize Constitution to consider whether there was a sufficiently serious allegation of misbehavior and/or inability against Justice Awich and if it found that there was a sufficiently serious case made out, to refer the matter to the Belize Advisory Council who would then investigate whether or not the judge ought to be removed. The Judicial and Legal Services Commission did not refer the complaint, it in effect, dismissed the complaint and said the complaint was premature and misconceived because it raised complaints against the judge while he was a Supreme Court judge and the judge is now a Court of Appeals judge.

COLA’s Disclosure of Evidence Scheduled in Private Prosecution Against Penner
The Executives of Citizen Organized for Liberty through Action, COLA, will appear in the Belmopan Magistrate Court to continue their private prosecution against Former Minister of State Elvin Penner. Tomorrow COLA’s Attorney, Kareem Musa, will have to disclose all their evidence they have to Penner’s attorney in order for the Magistrate to decide whether or not they case is arguable. In past weeks, COLA had been complaining that they were being stonewalled by Government officials from obtaining necessary documents. However they got their hands on what they say is the Interim Auditor General Report on the Passport Scandal. At first COLA was hesitant in distributing the report to the media until today. We got and copy of the report dated March 19 2014. Investigations commenced on October 29 2013 and the audit team was slated to cover the years April 2011 to September 2013.


Where is the Cotton Tree Village Border?
Earlier this week,  the Attorney General of Belize and Area Representative for Pickstock , Hon. Wilfred Elrington,  made some interesting statements about the village of Cotton Tree, claiming that the village itself is exclusively located on the right hand side of the road when travelling in a Northerly direction....

Man Electrocuted While Stealing Electricity
33-year-old Ernest Lincoln Caniquie died earlier this week in Belize City. According to police reports, sometime between the hours of 10:00p.m. on Sunday night and 6:00a.m. on Monday morning,  Caniquie climbed the lamp post  at the corner of Rivero Street and Rivero Street Extension. Police say he was trying...

Stabbing Incident in PG
Two persons are recovering from multiple stab and chop wounds in the Punta Gorda Hospital. 24-year-old Eden Mejia was chopped seven times to his arms and head while 26-year-old  Jordy Flores also had cut wounds to his arms and head. According to police reports,  Jordy Flores and Eden Mejia...

Top PSE Scorers Awarded
The top 25 national performers and those of the Belize District were today honored by their peers, families and the Ministry of Education. It is an annual tradition with all the pomp and circumstance required, and it reminds that among all the bad things in this world there is...

PSE Score Glitches Fixed?
The Ministry of Education has come under fire for glitches in its scoring of the Primary School Examination that left some students wondering what their grades actually were. The scores released are preliminary, and as of last Friday which was the deadline for queries to be made, those with...

Young Woman Perishes in Belize City Fire
This morning just before 5:00 a.m. fire broke out in the Newtown Barracks area. When the last embers had been put out approximately three hours later, two buildings were completely destroyed and a third severely damaged. Sadly, there was also loss of human life.  A female bar worker and...

PUP condemns Office of Prime Minister’s Press Release on Bar Association
Yesterday we told you about the press release issued from the Office of the Prime Minister. That press release was in realtion to the Bar Association’s condemnation of the controversial continued tenure of Justice of Appeal Samuel Awich. The release says that  “the attacks, using the Belize Bar Association...

Man Given Five Years for Discharging Firearm
Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith has sentenced 29 year old Darren Dawson to five years’ imprisonment for discharging a firearm in public.  On May 27, 2013 around 5:30 p.m. Dawson allegedly fired shots from a black 9 mm. pistol toward another man on Neal Pen Road. The incident was witnessed...

Collective Bargaining Agreement Between CPBL and CWU Signed
Audrey Matura Shepherd is the new president of the Christian Workers Union (CWU). As we told you yesterday the NTUCB has officially reinstated CWU into its fold and CWU  is now moving forward. Today a long standing Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) between the Citrus Products of Belize Limited (CPBL) ...

Patrick JonesPJ

National PSE award ceremony honors top students
The top 25 national performers in the 2014 Primary School Examination (PSE) and those of the Belize District were today honored by their peers, families and the Ministry of Education. It is an annual tradition with all the pomp and circumstance required, and it reminds that among all […]

Man given five years for discharging firearm
Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith has sentenced 29 year old Haynes Street resident Darren Dawson to five years’ imprisonment for discharging a firearm in public. On May 27, 2013 around 5:30 p.m.Dawson allegedly fired shots from a black 9mm pistol toward another man on Neal Pen Road. The incident […]

Domestic dispute lands husband in jail
This afternoon a former auto mechanic for the Police Department was remanded when a domestic incident went too far. On June 22 38 year old Ainsworth Dawson allegedly pulled a 16-gauge shotgun on his own wife, threatened to kill her and then choked her into unconsciousness. He claimed […]

Judicial and Legal Services Commission challenged over Justice Awich
Today a two-day trial concluded between Dean Boyce, the British Caribbean Bank, and the Judicial and Legal Services Commission. The names are familiar and so is the legal scenario. Since he was on the Supreme Court, Justice Samuel Awich has been dogged by accusations of lagging judgments and […]

Pre-dawn fire kills woman, destroys several buildings
This morning just after 4:00 a.m. fire broke out in the Newtown Barracks area. When the last embers had been put out approximately three hours later, two buildings were completely destroyed and two others heavily damaged. Sadly, there was also loss of human life, as a female bar […]

Statistical Institute updates on country indicators
The Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) held another in its series of press conferences, this time covering in addition to the monthly consumer price index and trade statistics news on life expectancy for Belizeans and the twice-yearly labour force survey. Compared to April of last year, unemployment is […]

Chopping incident in PG leaves two men hospitalized
A Tuesday morning fight in Punta Gorda town has left two men hospitalized, one of them in serious condition in Belize City. 24 year old Eden Mejia sustained a large cut wound to both of his shoulders, left wrist, almost severed fingers on his left hand, a cut […]

Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association face challenges with Fair Trade funds
Just when things looked they were going good for the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association, today there are reports of irregularities that could lead to criminal investigations. It all surrounds the BSCFA’s participation in the International Fair Trade System. An audit conducted this year turned up 8 […]

Corozal students graduate from GREAT program
The Gang Resistance Education and Training, GREAT program today celebrated another graduation of young people who have completed training. Thirty students graduated today in Corozal and now joins over five thousand boys and girls from around the country who are certified GREAT participants. During the course of the […]

Woman dies in early morning fire in Belize City
An early morning fire in Belize City today has gutted two buildings and claimed the life of a woman. 23 year old Jacqueline Arteaga was trapped inside the burning building which housed Kimmie’s Bar on Newtown Barracks. The charred remains of her body was found by firefighters after […]


Lobsterfest’s Grand Prize Winner, Breakfast to Die For, A Walk South & And A New Bar…
Yesterday the Grand Prize Winner for the 2014 San Pedro Lobsterfest was announced. The prize is…well…amazing. Ridiculous in fact. I stopped into the Seaduced Tour office and saw the prizes fanned out on the table. (Check out the full list at the end of the post.) Hotel stays at Ramon’s, Xanadu and more. Tropic Air tickets to the island…lots more. And the lovely lovely LOVELY Rose, new resident of San Pedro, was the lucky winner! Go Rose! She moved here just last September with her equally talented husband Bob. He’s the writer (a real writer!) of my favorite San Pedro blog – Bound for Belize. (I wouldn’t be the least bit surprised if she got this giant pile of certificates home, promptly laid them out on the couch and rolled in them. It’s totally what I would have done.)

The Flor de la Feria Talent Show is this Saturday June 28th 2014
The Flor de la Feria Talent Show is this Saturday, June 28th, at the Cancha Marshalleck. On Sunday, they’ll have a sporting event for the ladies.

International Sourcesizz

A top ten list no one wants to be on but seven are located in the wider Caribbean
Drawing on the latest report from the UN Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC), Britain’s Guardian newspaper has published a list of the world’s top ten most populous cities in each country, ranked by the most up-to-date available homicide rates per 100,000 people, with the top five and seven of the top ten located in the wider Caribbean. The list comprises the most populous cities in each of 137 countries and is not necessarily the capital or the city with the highest murder rate in the country. However, somewhat unexpectedly topping the list is Basseterre, the capital of the twin-island federation of St Kitts and Nevis, with a 2011 murder rate of 131.6 per 100,000 – over two-and-a-half times that of Kingston, Jamaica, at number ten. The full list as published by the Guardian is as follows: 1: Basseterre, St Kitts and Nevis (murder rate: 131.6 in 2011). 2: Caracas, Venezuela (murder rate: 122 in 2009). 3: Guatemala City, Guatemala (murder rate: 116.6 in 2010). 4: Belize City, Belize (murder rate: 105.1 in 2011). 5: Tegucigalpa, Honduras (murder rate: 102.2 in 2011). 6: Maseru, Lesotho (Murder rate: 61.9 in 2009). 7: Cape Town, South Africa (Murder rate: 59.9 in 2007). 8: Panama City, Panama (Murder rate: 53.1 in 2012). 9: San Salvador, El Salvador (Murder rate: 52.5 in 2012). 10: Kingston, Jamaica (Murder rate: 50.3 per 100,000 people in 2011).

Airman supports task force in Belize
Senior Airman Mario Acevedo is one of the busiest airmen assigned to the U.S. Southern Command-sponsored New Horizons exercise in Belize. As the lodging representative, he makes room assignments, tracks personnel accountability and works with the host nation hotel to make sure things such as laundry, dining and housekeeping practices are meeting government standards. Acevedo, a services journeyman deployed here from the 820th RED HORSE Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, also plans morale trips, barbeques, movie nights and sports and fitness activities. He also issues packaged meals to more than 560 personnel, delivers breakfast to two engineering constructions sites in Belize City each morning and assists with switching out Belizean security guards at the end and beginning of their shifts. "I've enjoyed it," said Acevedo, who hails from Tucson, Arizona. "The best part of the deployment is working with a great team." Acevedo joined the Air Force four years ago. His great-grandfather and his grandfather served in the Navy, and his father served in the Army. "It was kind of a 'keep it in the family' thing," Acevedo said. "I wanted to do something that was noteworthy, and I had an urge to serve my country."

Development funds to help Belize farmed shrimp industry get ASC certificate
The Belize Shrimp Growers Association expects eight farms, representing 89% of shrimp farms and more than 95% of total production, to enter assessment later this year ....

10th Annual Scientific Meeting of the Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism Achievements
The Caribbean Regional Fisheries Mechanism (CRFM) Secretariat in Kingstown, St Vincent and the Grenadines, hosted the 10th Annual Scientific Meeting from June 10 to 17, 2014. Thirteen CRFM Member States: Anguilla, Belize, Grenada, Dominica, Guyana, Jamaica, Montserrat, St Kitts and Nevis, St Lucia, St Vincent and the Grenadines, The Bahamas, Trinidad and Tobago, and Turks and Caicos Islands, participated in this year’s meeting. The meeting benefitted from technical support provided by Professor John Hoenig, Consultant, Professor of Marine Science at the Virginia Institute of Marine Science; Nancie Cummings, Fisheries Expert at US National Marine Fisheries Service; Professor Hazel Oxenford from the Centre for Resource Management and Environmental Studies, UWI, Cave Hill campus; and Dr. Paul Medley, International Fisheries Consultant from the UK.

Using the Right Sunscreen Can Protect You and the World's Reefs
Summer is here and it’s got the temperatures to prove it. One excellent way to cool down during the summer months is to take a cool dip in a body of water. But have you ever thought about what is washing off of you and into the water as you cool down? Whether you are at a lake or at the beach, you need to be mindful of what you are putting into the water. You wouldn’t throw trash into the water, so why would you put harmful chemicals in the water through your sunscreen? While sunscreen is wonderful for protecting your skin, it can be really terrible for the environment.


Blessed to be able to take a much needed vacation aboard the Carnival Magic. Out of the thousands of pictures and lots of video I put together a summary of our Belize, Sharks and Rays excursion with Splash Wave. It was great!

Video: 1962 Belize-Guatemala dispute comments by a Williams ?, 3min.
Member of the Opposition in British Honduras and Belize

Video: Belize, 9min.
Scott & Jessie vacation in Belize 2014

Video:Elegant Flair Dancers, 10min.
Elegant Flair was founded in September of 1989 by Ms. Lorna Smith and Ms. Pat Warren, Associate Director. The group is comprised of fifteen men, women and children, who perform high energy dancing, set to a combination of powerful drumming and up-tempo band music. The movements are a blend of Punta Rock, Calypsonian Socca which is a cultural blend unique to Belize's ethnic population, as well as those of traditional African origin. Elegant Flair is well respected in the Caribbean and American Community. This group continues to be a strong force, dedicated to providing high quality shows that takes the audience away in a swirl of culturally based entertainment. Our goal is to facilitate a process of awareness that can encourage enlightenment and understanding of the differences and uniqueness that allow us to create hope and give respect to each other and the world through our music and dance.

Video: Lobster Lovers at San Pedro Lobster Fest 2014, 2min.
Another successful San Pedro Lobster Festival is in the books as an entire week of celebrations at select restaurants offering special lobster dishes and great entertainment kicked off last week with the opening of lobster season in Belize.

Video: Srta Flor de la Feria Slideshow, 6min.
The Flor de la Feria Talent Show is this Saturday, June 28th, at the Cancha Marshalleck. On Sunday, they'll have a sporting event for the ladies. "Talent Show to select Srta. Talento this Saturday at 7:00 p.m. It's a family event, so bring all members of your household! Sunday however, we have a much bigger sport event. At 4:00 p.m. Srta. Flor de la Feria 2013 will blow the whistle and the candidates will start a runathon from the town hall all the way to the football field where they will be doing a series of events: a 5 aside match egg & spoon sack race fill the bottle needle and thread easy dizzy who will stand victorious and get most points? Join us and see who wins Srta. Talento and Srta Deporte!"

Video: Victoria House Luxury Beach Resort - Belize, 3min.
Luxury Beach Resort Victoria House on the Ambergris Caye in Belize. This video shows the wonderful property from the air.

Video: Fruits of Belize, 6min.
Living in Belize now, Addie (9) and Ryland (8) wanted to share some of the fruits of their labor with their friends and family back home. So, we set out on a tour to show you some of the edible fruits in our little village of Placencia, Belize.

Video: Blue Hole - Belize 2014, 3min.
This video is about my trip out to Blue Hole National Park - Belize 2014

Video: If You Can Sing It... Bring It - Auditions (June 24, 2014), 60min.
BRING IT is Channel 5's newest show. BRING IT will be a battle between Belize's top vocal talents. We KNOW they can SING IT..but now they must BRING IT!

Video: Hurricane Ernesto arrives in Belize, 10sec.
Sitting out Hurricane Ernesto on Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Video: Fire on Newtown Barracks, Belize City, 7min.
Fire destroyed Timmy's Bar and another building and claimed one life on Newtown Barracks, Belize City on Wednesday, June 25, 2014.

Video: Javier Alegria, 2min.
Javier Alegria, a Belizean biology student and aspiring conservationist who will be joining our first ever Ridge to Reef Expeditions through the financial support of many generous individuals on our indiegogo campaign, joined us at TIDE this week to give back. He gave lessons to curious high school science students from his community about sea turtles and manatees, and how we can protect them. After the lessons, the students joined him on a beach clean up which he also organized. We have reached the half-way point with our indiegogo campaign to provide Javier with a full scholarship to participate in the first Ridge to Reef Expedition

Video: Travellers Liquors Introduces Baron Gin in Belize, 1.5min.
Travellers Liquors Ltd. of Belize just recently introduced their newest product in a line of great liquors by the distillery, the Baron Gin. It's been commented being an exquisite Gin that you will think that you are drinking an imported Gin.


Video: Monkey Falls - San Ignacio, Belize, 1min.
Hostel host took us to a secluded waterfall outside of town to do alittle swimming and waterfall jumping. This is Monkey Falls - San Ignacio, Belize

Video: You betta Belize it!, 6min.

Video: Belize 2014, 14min.
from Jody Tyner

June 25, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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

Tigersharks are first NEBL Champions
The San Pedro Tigersharks are the 2014 Champions of the first ever National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) hosted by the Belize Basketball Federation (BBF). The islanders claimed the much coveted title at game three of the finals on Sunday June 22nd at the Rafael Angel Nuñez Auditorium after they faced the Cayo Western Ballaz. The championship win was a rebound after a loss against the country’s western basketball powerhouse on Friday June 20th in San Ignacio, Cayo. The islanders travelled on Friday night for the second of a three-game series, with the hope of sealing the championship. But as destiny would have it, the Ballaz team came out in full force and dominated the entire game. The San Pedro Tigersharks’ mistakes were plenty and the Western Ballaz took advantage of islander’s inability to finish their plays. By the end of the night, it was 74 to 67 in favor of the Ballaz. With that win, the Ballaz forced a game three, which saw the San Pedro Tigersharks having home court advantage.

San Pedro Lobster Fest draws large multitude to the island
On Saturday June 21st, hundreds of residents and visitors flocked to the island’s Central Park for the annual San Pedro Lobster Fest Block Party. A total of 15 booths hosted some of San Pedro’s top restaurants, all offering lobster prepared in a variety of delicious ways. To complement the great food, visitors were also treated to a taste of Belize’s music with a bit of live steel band and punta music. From early in the evening, visitors swarmed the various tents to get their hands on some succulent and sweet crustaceans. There were lobster hotdogs, lobster empanadas, lobster risotto, lobster lettuce wraps, lobster burgers, lobster kebabs, lobster pizzas, lobster enchiladas and even lobster waffles; truly lobster was available every which way. Equally abundant were tropical drinks, even lobster margaritas. While offering an array of lobster dishes to customers, the booths also worked hard to convince a panel of judges who were tasked to select the Best Lobster Dish, the Best Lobster Drink and the Best Lobster Themed Booth. After satisfying their taste buds, the judges selected the following as the winners.

(Not) Working my butt off
It’s been over seven weeks. What I’ve learned: Abs are made in the kitchen, NOT the gym Alcohol has more calories than food. I love food. Alcohol means hangovers. I hate hangovers. Therefore, yup, I’m sticking to food. I’m the one not drinking. Have I become boring? If I have to do one more squat, my butt will turn to rock… Speaking of butts…I’ll tell you a story, but I don’t want you to vilify or believe that the person in the story is a monster. Some people just don’t know better. I’m adopted, and as such, my makeup is different from that of the parents who raised me. My birth mother was a Creole-Garifuna mix, and biological father is a Yucatec Maya. My body type is not typical of the Maya people I grew up around, and as such, I’ve been blessed with quite a bit of booty. I am more prone to pack on muscle, and will never have the tiny waist and slender, long, lean look. I’ve accepted that of myself, and know that I should revel in the fact that I’ve been built for strength, endurance, and will more than likely always be able to haul things twice my body weight if given half the chance. I am what I’m often called on the street: “Strong Gyal”. That’s fine. But to my Maya (adoptive) mother – the woman who raised me? I was such a different breed of person! As I hit puberty, my body morphed into the ‘big butt, broad shouldered, thick-waist” person I’ll be for life. My poor mother saw all my little Maya cousins running around being petite and skinny, and yes, I ran around too, but my legs were muscled, my calves were huge, and my butt…it was huge…

Maya Magic at Marco Gonzalez Site
And so it was on Saturday, June 21st when Maya priest Martin Choc, by invitation of site director Jan Brown and the Board of Directors, held a summer solstice ceremony and blessing of the Marco Gonzalez Maya Site located five miles south of San Pedro Town. Renowned flautist and musician Pablo Collado’s ethereal music captivated the guests as they arrived for the 10AM ceremony. With more than 40 people in attendance, and half as many participating in the ceremony, people from all corners of the earth stood shoulder to shoulder in a circle around an urn of burning incense and the demure, weathered man who spoke in his native tongue of Q’eqchi Mayan. Choc first blessed the area, fanning it with holy water using a palm frond while he walked around the Main Plaza where the ceremony took place. Then, holding candles and enchanted by his words, the circle stood silent, with only the sounds of birds, the burning incense and his blessings to be heard. After the ten-minute ceremony each person was asked to return their flaming candle to the burning incense urn, and the group was told that the vessel must remain there for three days, undisturbed. The ending ritual was punctuated with the soft drumming of Collado.

Public Advisory on Use of Specific Health Products
The Ministry of Health has received a public notification from the Unites States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), through the International Health Regulations of the World Health Organization, on health products that consumers are advised NOT to purchase. Consumers are advised not to purchase or use the following products that are promoted and sold for weight loss on websites or in retail stores: Dr. Ming’s Chinese Capsule, 7 Days Herbal Slim, Sliming Diet Berry Plus, Asset Extreme, SlimEasy Herbs Capsule and Meizitang Citrus. FDA Laboratory confirms that these products contain Sibutramine, a controlled substance removed from the market for safety reasons in October 2010.

Ambergris Today

Eat More Lobster at San Pedro Lobster Fest
The judges were delighted to savor two new lobster creations never before seen at Lobster Fest; Carlo & Ernie’s Runway Bar & Gill impressed with a savory Lobster Chimichanga while Cayo Espanto impressed with Lobster Waffles. The Best Lobster Dish went to Casa Picasso with their Lobster Risotto. And food was not the only thing the judges were sampling throughout the evening. Lobster inspired cocktails were also on the judging table. Pineapples came up with a Luscious Margarita garnished with lobster and olives, Hidden Treasure Restaurant had a sweet Mango Mojito, Cayo Espanto produced Lobsteritas and Casa Picasso had a fresh cucumber martini they called the Rejuvenate. The Best Cocktail award went to Hidden Treasure.

Isla Bonita Elementary School Receives 20 Tablets
The Isla Bonita Elementary School received a kind donation of 20 iPad tablets on Monday, June 23, 2014. The donation was made by an anonymous donor through the Northern Cross Foundation. The school received 20 – 16gb iPad (3rd generation) and they will be put to good use at the school’s computer lab. The tablets will be available for the students in Standard III classes up to Standard VI.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Mr. Chris Nuñez received a generous donation from Wolfgang Wind
On Monday, June 23, Mayor Daniel Guerrero and Mr. Chris Nuñez received a generous donation from Wolfgang Wind. The donation included a Stop Sign with LED lights, a Bushnell Speed Screen and a Bushnell Velocity Speed Gun with a tripod. These items will help the San Pedro Transport Department tremendously in controling all speeding vehicles. Thank you Wolfgang Wind!

Summer Art Wave Program
The Summer Art Wave Program kicks off Monday June 30th with the one week program of Corn Husk doll making. This program will focus on women, young and mature, who would like to learn a skill which will generate income. There is still space available; kindly visit the House of Culture to register. All of the Summer Art Wave Programs are free of cost! Courtesy Corozal House of Culture (NICH)

Wildtracks Update
Meet Vicki! She is about 3.5 months old - an endangered Yucatan black howler monkey - but not a very big one! She is the 70th monkey to come into Wildtracks! Support your local Wildtracks Organization!! Courtesy Wildtracks!

Public Advisory on Use of Specific Health Products
Government of Belize Press Office

Dia De San Pedro Calendar of Events
Karaoke Competition: Friday June 27th at the old Football Field

We can't let this go down like that!
By Abdulmajeed K Nunez BGYEA and Rod of Correction Are symbols of hope This is what Maurice Bishop tried to do with the Grenadian folks This will put a halt to American imports Then Americans invaded with force Then assassinated him and put in their cohort No wonder Barrow is trying to discredit Nigel’s effort To ensure that his government continues to get endorsed After the formation of ROC The eleven organizations were responsible to send out a press release to that fact Informing the nation they were committed to ROC None except one did that Now their spokesman is under attack You all could have prevented that Now it’s time for you all to take stock

PSE Awards Ceremony
Sacred Heart College will be the hosting the Ministry of Education's PSA awards ceremony for Cayo this Thursday, June 26th, starting at 9:00am. Congratulations to all the brilliant students!

Belize shrimp farms prepare for certification
Members of the Belize Shrimp Growers' Association are preparing for Aquaculture Stewardship Council (ASC) assessment, thanks to funding from the Inter-American Development Bank (IDB) and the Sustainable Trade Initiative (IDH). The Association expects eight farms, representing 89% of shrimp farms and more than 95% of total farmed shrimp production in Belize, to enter assessment against the ASC Shrimp Standard later this year. The Belize Shrimp Growers Association has been working with Mauricio Mejia, WWF Mesoamerican Reef program officer for aquaculture, to help the farms develop better management practices and reduce their environmental impact. “Since 2007 the farms have been reducing their environmental impacts. There is still more to be done but they are on their way to be ready to enter assessment against the ASC standard,” said Mr Mejia. “For me the certification of eight shrimp farms means the sustainability of the Mesoamerican reef – it will be a massive achievement and an example for other countries and industry.”

Office of the Prime Minister Addresses Belize Bar Association on Justice Awich
The Office of the Prime Minister (OPM) has noted with concern the continued attacks by some lawyers on Justice of Appeal Mr. Samuel Awich. These attacks, using the Belize Bar Association Resolution as their springboard, are contemptuous and contemptible. They seek to scandalize the Belize Court of Appeal by alleging bias on the part of a member of that court, and may well be actionable by the Director of Public Prosecutions.

Belize Audubon Society Summer Camps
The BAS is having a few different Summer camps this season. They have a 'Jungle and Cave Adventure Camp,' a 'Nature Photography Camp,' a 'Birds of a Feather Flock Together Camp,' and other great adventures.

Cornerstone's New Facility
The Cornerstone Foundation started using their new facility this week. Looks great, and the kids on the feeding program sure appreciate it. Thanks, Cornerstone, and congratulations! "Day 1 at the new facility for the children in the Cornerstone Feeding program."

Channel 7

Small Protest by Anti-LBGT Crowd as New US Ambassador Is Sworn In
The new US Ambassador designate Carlos Moreno arrived in Belize on Saturday morning. After a few days of settling in - he presented his credentials to the Governor General at 10:00 this morning in Belmopan. It's usually a routine event - and for the media , a near non event that typically gets relegated to the end of the news. But not this one. Tonight it's a headline because Ambassador Moreno became the first Ambassador ever to face a protests while he presented his credentials. Now, we're careful to say that the protest was very small and the man leading it is known to….how to put it nicely? "Tilt at windmills"? But Patrick Menzies made it a first today as he chanted down the new ambassador. 7News was in Belmopan:..

Cross Border Custody Battle: 6 Year Old Guate Student Abducted From Benque School
Where is Germayoni Letran? The 6 year old Guatemalan was abducted from the Seventh Day Adventist Primary School in Benque Viejo Town this morning - and no one has seen her since. It's a complicated situation because the crime was committed in Belize - but the suspect is her Guatemalan aunt, and the complainant is her Guatemalan father, and the child is believed to be somewhere in Guatemalan. All of them live in Melchor - expect the child's Guatemalan mother; she lives in Los Angeles - and does not have custody of the child. Benque police believe she set up her sister to go and abduct the child at school this morning - we spoke to the OC via telephone:.. ASP Dinsdale Thompson, O.C. - Benque Viejo Police "The young lady who came to the Adventist school here in Benque Viejo and took the child away is relative to the mom who is in the US at this present moment. What we have found out so far that it is a family dispute and so it's a dispute between the mom and the dad over the custody of the child and that's why the mom we believe orchestrated the abduction of the child. Wherever the child is or who have the child, what we are looking at is the possibility that the child was taken back into Guatemala - that, we are still following up. We do not have any connected evidence on that. We are looking at the personal safety of the child and return of the child so that the child can get on with her education and the mom and dad settle their issue whatever it is. At the moment it is a violation that have occurred on the soil of Belize, so that's what we are looking at as well."

DPP Wants Drug Plane Lawmen Re-Tried
In December of 2012, Justice Denis Hanomansingh acquitted the 5 lawmen who were accused of landing a drug plane on the Southern Highway. Now, the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl-Lynn Vidal, is seeking to appeal that acquittal; she wants them re-tried. The plane was loaded with almost three thousand kilos of cocaine - but got stuck on the highway when one of its wings got damaged during the improvised landing. The twin Engine Beechcraft King Air 200 landed in the Bladden area of the Southern Highway. 5 lawmen Police Corporal Renel Grant, Corporal Nelson Middleton, Sergeant Lawrence Humes, Customs Boatman Harold Usher, Sergeant Jacinto Roches, and civilian Victor Logan were all charged of abetment to commit a crime. The accusation was that they facilitated the landing of the plane.

McKenzie Jr Charged; Victim's Family Say They Had Nothing to Do With It
Before we went to break, we told you about George McKenzie Jr being arraigned today for the attempted murder of 22 year old Paul Alvarez - which happened in November of last year. Last night you heard the outrage from McKenzie's mother, tonight you'll hear the other side of the story from Alvarez's mother. Dorita Puerto- came by our studios today and told us that her son wanted no charges to be laid against McKenzie nor did he know anything about McKenzie's arrest until last night. Puerto said it was all police work that led to the 19 year old's arrest and it had nothing to do with her son. Dorita Puerto, mother of Paul Alvarez "I just came to give a brief statement concerning the situation of the young man George McKenzie that got arrested and charged for my son Paul Alvarez, because according to the police he is the one that shot my son on November 15th last year and the situation is that his mom got on TV on the news and talk a lot of stuff that is not real because she says that nobody from "jungle" likes her son and the police and "jungle" people harassed her son and stuff like that. Well on behalf of the police I don't know. But on behalf of us, nobody from "jungle" have no problem with anybody.

Office Of The PM To Awich's Defence
We've told you all about the various attacks on Justice of Appeal Samuel Awich. The bar took out a resolution against his re-appointment, the former Prime Minister brought it up in the house, and more recently Senior Counsel Andrew Marshalleck wrote a lengthy article in the weekend papers questioning whether Awich's re-appointment unde3mrines the integrity of the Court of Appeal. Well, the Prime Minister's Office struck back today with a strongly worded release. It refers to, quote, "continued attacks" which are, quote, "contemptuous and contemptible." It says these attacks, quote, "seek to scandalize the…Court of Appeal…and may well be actionable by the Director of Public Prosecutions." The release says, quote, "the campaign is being led by persons with obvious interests to serve, namely Bar President Eamon Courtenay, Jacqueline Marshalleck and her husband Andrew Marshalleck."

Man Falls From Lamp-Post While Trying To Get Electricity
Today a post mortem was conducted on the body of Ernest Conorquie - a man in his 30's who fell from a lamppost on Sunday night and died. The post mortem will determine whether he was electrocuted or if he died from the fall. It happened on Rivero street near the junction with Kraal Road in the Port Loyola Area of Belize City. And why was he on that lamp-post? Well, he was trying to steal electricity for his home which had reportedly been without power for some time. It's highly dangerous, and also illegal but stealing power from a variety of sources is a way of life for many on Belize City's southside. His family denied requests for an interview today - but friends told us he was a working man who was trying to provide for his family.

Another Will Be Charged For Townsend Murder
Adventist Missionary Brian Townsend was killed in Belize in December of 2013, and since then two of the three men believed to have killed him, brothers Marlon and Rualito Balona have turned up dead. The third man who was believed to have been involved is in prison - for a fine he didn't pay. But now Belmopan police have gotten a breakthrough in the case - which they say will enable them to charge him for murder:.. Supt. Howell Gillett, Officer Commanding, Belmopan Police "Just yesterday we got new information in the form of statements, and those statements today will be sent to the D.P.P.'s office for advice. Following that advice from the D.P.P. we will move on from there. We are very hopeful, and like I said before, any loss of

Capital Cops Recover Weapon From Burglary
In other news from Belmopan police - they have recovered two guns stolen from a restaurant in Ontario Village. The officer commanding told us how they found the guns hidden in the bushes:.. Supt. Howell Gillett, Officer Commanding, Belmopan Police "On Sunday shortly after midnight we received information that Trey's Bar and Grill owned by John Robertson of Ontario Village had been broken into. The police responded, a quick response team as well as our patrol officers, we process the scene and there are a number of finger prints found on the scene. Based on that one Freddy Sosa Jr. was brought into custody. There were 3 firearms that went missing during the burglary; a 12 gauge shotgun, a pellet gun and a 9mm pistol. On Sunday morning very early a team was put together and about two and a half miles behind Ontario Village both the shotgun and the pellet guns were found. We are still investigating the possibility of recovering the 9mm pistol. They were hidden in the bushes, but good police work led us to the exact location where they were hidden. We believe its a crime of opportunity, he had a relative working for Mr. Robertson and we believe that he use that opportunity to gain entry into the house."

Vanessa Champagne Was Robbed; Robber Shot By Police
Vanessa Champagne Paris - she's become a national figure, the first transgender person to be thrust into the public spotlight. But, the news tonight is that she continues to be the victim of crime. This one went un-reported but on June 10th she was robbed in Belmopan. It happened right on the walkway through the center of the capital where Vanessa was walking late at night. Luckily police have been deployed to the crime hotspot and responded immediately: Supt. Howell Gillett, Officer Commanding, Belmopan Police "On the 10th of June at around 10:20pm Vanessa Champagne Paris reported that he was walking on the sidewalk near ambergris Avenue when he was accosted by four male persons who took away his Iphone valued at five hundred dollars. Police responded immediately and a suspect was found to be in a tree along the sidewalk. He was ordered to come down and during the process he placed his hand in a black bag that he had with him on the tree. Police fired one shot which caught him on the right hand. Nobody was ever charged for it because the complainant did not request any further Police action into the matter." Jules Vasquez "Are you concerned that with the suspect already perched himself on a tree…that lethal force was still used?"

Americans Help With Forensic Education
Often in this newscast, we show you different crime scenes, and the technicians from the National Forensic Science Service doing their jobs. They're usually the ones retrieving expended bullet shells, putting down evidence markers, and taking photographs. All of these items are usually tendered as evidence which criminal prosecutors rely on to build their cases. It's a process that is central to criminal prosecutions, but often training is inadequate. But now, the US Embassy is facilitating long term training which will bring them up to standards used in the American Police Departments. We got a chance to meet the trainer Hayden Baldwin. He told us about 10 month course that the personnel at the Forensics Science Service will undergo: Hayden Baldwin, Scenes of Crime Trainer "Scenes of crimes technician is going to received a level of training above what they currently have and that level will take them to international standards. In order to accomplish that, that will take about 1 year of training. I will be here for 2 weeks each month for the next year to go through a very intense and long training that is going to challenge them to make sure that they are the forensics experts that they will become. We are looking at photography, latent work, latent meaning the fingerprints, palm prints, shoe impressions, going into impression evidence which is shoe prints, tire tracks, bite marks, tool marks then into biological and trace evidence where they will be able to use forensics light sources to look for bodily fluids at the crime scenes.

US Ambassador Proposes A Refocusing Of US Assistance In Belize
And while we're used to the US Government assisting with security initiatives, the new Ambassador says he'd like to tweak that focus slightly. Today, he discussed his interest in education and the arts and how that shapes his approach to crime:.. H.E. Carlos Moreno, US Ambassador to Belize "But I also think there has to be kind of a refocusing of the types of assistance. Both my wife and I are very interested in education, particularly of the arts. Belize itself has a rich cultural history in art and music. In fact I was talking to the Governor-General about this. He has a very fine and deep enduring passion for music. Without disclosing the contents of that discussion, we agree that cultural assistance particularly directed towards youth, getting at the root of the problem with respect to citizen security and so forth. I think that one of my recommendations in my capacity as Ambassador here will be to channel resources in the direction of non-military assistance but to take the form of assistance in terms of educating youth in particular, steering them away from gang violence and drug use and so forth."

Menzies Still Occupying
One week ago Patrick Menzies started his "Occupy Belmopan" event - and one week later, it's still going. But today he took a break to protest against the new US Ambassador - and then went right back to the foot of the Assembly Stairs to resume his occupation. Today, he repeated that he will stay there until the gender policy is withdrawn. Patrick Menzies "The movement is this; we're here Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday having services and teaching and preaching and praising God. And on Monday and Sunday…every other day we're there passing out flyers. And it's been working. We have a lot of people, English speaking and other people coming out there now and saying you know what, we didn't know what you guys were doing so thank you very much. My victory will come when Belizeans stand up for their nation. Belizeans out there stop being cowards. Cowardice is of the devil, it's not of God and if you are scared for them to take your job right now they will be trampling upon your sons and their kids. You must sacrifice now for further generations." Jules Vasquez "These people don't join you because you are extreme. Not even your own church brethren join you because you are too far out there brother."

Re-thinking Trade
In March, we showed you the latest figures from the Statistical Institute of Belize which showed Belize's growing trade imbalance. That imbalance has been a focus of the Government and for the past few months, different public officials who work in all the different aspects of trade have been participating an a training workshop funded by the European Union. The goal is to create a trade negotiating team which will be able to represent Belize in the different neighboring countries in an effort to open up export markets. Today was the final session, and the media was invited to see the new members of the trade negotiating team in action. We stopped by and spoke with the Director about the importance of these officials:

A-1 On Aids
The trade workshop was held at the Biltmore Plaza Hotel and in the room next door the National AIDS Commission was making a presentation to the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, & Malaria. The Commission is trying to secure grant funding to continue its work. The Fund Portfolio Manager for the Global Fund told us today that the organization is impressed with the country's performance to earn an "A1" Rating: Matthew MacGregor, Fund Portfolio Manager - Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria "I'm here today in Belize to support the National AIDS Commission and the CCM (country coordinating mechanism) which are two bodies that work closely with the global fund to access funding for HIV and tuberculosis here in Belize." "Today we are working through the focus areas that that funding will support alongside the National AIDS Commission and the Ministry of Health from the Belize government." Geovannie Brackett, reporter "Being one of the largest funders as it relates to those issue here in the country particularly AIDS, could you give us like a sum of what the last sum that your organization have donated to the country of Belize."

UK Guardian: Belize City Fourth In Homicide
In April, we told you about the United Nations Global Study on Homicide from which showed that based on 2012 figures Belize had the third highest homicide rate in the world. That wasn't new, but what was, was the murder rate for Belize City. It stood at 105.1 per hundred thousand - more than two and a half times the already bad national average for 2012. Today an article in the UK Guardian put it in perspective. It listed Belize city murder rate - this time based on on 2011 figures at 4th highest in the world, followed by Guatemala City, Caracas Venezuela and Basseterre, Saint Kitts.

Channel 5

Government threatens the president of the bar and two former presidents
  Government threatens the president of the bar and two former presidents. Prime Minister Dean Barrow is in Dominican Republic for a SICA summit, but just after six this evening, [...]

U.S. Ambassador is greeted with a protest
US Ambassador designate Carlos Moreno arrived in Belize on Saturday morning to take over from his predecessor, Vinai Thummalapally. The retired California Supreme Court Justice turned diplomat made it official [...]

US Ambassador presents credentials to the GG
The media was not allowed on the grounds of Belize House this morning, but we were invited to the US Embassy parking lot for an impromptu, very brief word from [...]

Ambassador Carlos Moreno says he ain’t pushing the gay agenda
Ambassador Moreno could not help but notice the welcome he received outside the residence of the Governor-General. To our knowledge he is the first arriving US Ambassador to ever been [...]

6 year old Guatemalan student is kidnapped in Benque
Benque Police are tonight investigating a report of the kidnapping of a six year old Guatemalan girl in Belize. Germayoni Asucena Cancinos Letran commutes daily from her home in Melchor [...]

6 men go before the Court of Appeal for drug plane in the south
In November of 2010, a plane famously landed on the Southern Highway, and nearby authorities found over twenty-nine thousand kilos of suspected cocaine with a street value of close to [...]

Victim of brutality says it was orchestrated by the police top brass
The violent assault of Ernesto Chan last Thursday in San Ignacio by a pair of officers is the fourth reported incident of police brutality within that jurisdiction of late.  On [...]

Transgender woman, Vanessa Champagne Paris, is robbed
In April, a transgender woman named Vanessa Champagne Paris was badly beaten as she walked on Vernon Street in Belize City. She claimed that she was targeted because of her [...]

Pretrial date set for case of Pickwoad land claim
The Pickwoad family, along with attorney Audrey Matura-Shepherd, was back in court today, where a land dispute involving a parcel situated at the corners of Chetumal Street and Albert Hoy [...]

George McKenzie Junior faces a slew of charges
  A few months ago, nineteen year-old George “Junie Balls” McKenzie was accused of pulling the trigger on a man who was shot on Victoria Street. But just when he [...]

Christian Workers Union is back in the fold of the N.T.U.C.B.
The Christian Workers Union has been accepted back into the fold of the National Trade Union Congress of Belize after being booted out of the umbrella organization, following a failed [...]

CWU president says collective bargaining agreement for stevedores still up in the air
In mid-August of last year during the apparent implosion of the union, negotiations for a Collective Bargaining Agreement with the Port of Belize Limited on behalf of the stevedores came [...]

Occupy Belmopan – organization determined to stand strong
On June seventeenth, the organization called the Alliance of Ministers and Leaders of Belize took to the steps of the National Assembly in an initiative called Occupy Belmopan. Since then [...]

Ambassador Carlos Moreno to refocus US assistance in Belize
In recent months Belize’s military branches have benefitted from millions of dollars in equipment, infrastructure and training, courtesy of the US. Those donations are a part of a larger regional [...]

Police look to charge a Benque resident for murder of Canadian national
Canadian Brian Townsend was murdered at Christmas in the Valley of Peace community in the Cayo District. It was a sensational crime, more so because within a matter of weeks [...]

Money changer shot in Corozal
A money changer from San Joaquin, Corozal, narrowly escaped death today when he was targeted shortly after five this morning. Forty-seven-year-old Martin Guerra was shot after he left his brother’s [...]

Scenes of Crime technicians get forensic training
Scenes of Crime technicians and personnel of the Belize Police Department are being trained to meet international standards in forensics. Today, the Belize National Forensic Science Service Department and the [...]

2-year program to bolster foreign trade concludes
With a widening trade imbalance, Belize has been attempting to close the gap. To this end, a two-year program to bolster foreign trade concluded today. The project, funded by the [...]

The debut of “If You Can Sing It, Bring It!”
The wait for Channel Five’s exciting new entertainment show is over. At nine o’clock, the recorded auditions of If You Can Sing, Bring It will premiere right here on this [...]


Belize And Mexico Bilateral Transport Authority Agreement Signed
Last week we reported on the meeting where Director of the Federal Motor Carrier, SCT, Federico Dominguez, met with Belizean government officials to agree on safety rules to be followed by trucks as well as buses and tourism buses that cross the Belize Mexico Border. Heading the Belize delegation was Minister of State Edmund Castro, also present was Honorary Consul of Belize in Chetumal Lic. Jorge Valencia. In that meeting several issues where discussed including one that will benefit Belizeans travelling in the Mexican territory and are involved in minor traffic mishaps. Lic. Jorge Valencia - Honorary Consul of Belize in Chetumal “We have been working in conjunction with the state and the municipal police in which we have already made an agreement with them that when a Belizean comes in and gets into an accident or violates a traffic regulation they will be issued a courtesy ticket, they won’t be fined, they will be issued a courtesy ticket and they will be explain to them the rule that they broke and how the transport regulation is in Chetumal, and this is not only for the City of Chetumal but for the whole state of Quintana Roo, we did that from last year and for Easter they put it into operation and we didn’t had any problems with Belizeans when they came in there.”

Wilbert Carcamo Apprehended By Corozal Police
Wilbert Carcamo, the man we told you about last night accused of attacking 24 year old Andrew Lopez and his wife, is tonight behind bars. Carcamo, who was wanted by Corozal Police for dangerous harm, was apprehended yesterday evening in the Village of Libertad He was arraigned in court this morning where he pleaded not guilty to one count of dangerous harm and aggravated assault. He was offered bail of $5000.00 or two sign bails of $2500.00 each. As mentioned last night, Carcamo is said to have attacked Lopez and his wife as they walked along the main road in Libertad Village on Sunday night.

Money Exchanger Escapes His Death As He Was Shot While Heading To The Border
A money exchanger from the village of San Joaquin in the Corozal District is lucky to be alive tonight after he was attacked by two masked individuals while in the Santa Rita Area of Corozal. Around 5:45 this morning, Martin Guerra was on his way to the Northern Border after making a short stop at his brother’s house. Guerra reported to police that upon reaching the intersection of the Santa Rita Road with the Philip Goldson Highway two masked men came out of the bushes and fired a single shot in his direction. Luckily the bullet missed its target. Andrew Ramirez - OC Corozal Town “A male person has been injured and he has been identified as Martin Guerra. Our initial investigation reveals that Mr. Guerra was a pesero, had visited his brother sometime about 5:45 am and left en route to the border so coming out of the road where his brother live he had to stop at a “T” and he had to make a right turn toward the Phillip Goldson Highway, upon making that right turn towards the Phillip Goldson Highway he saw a male person, wrapping over his face, Hispanic who fired a shot towards his vehicle, the gun that was used to his description was like shot gun.”

P.M Heads Out To Dominican Republic For SICA Summit
The Prime Minister of Belize, Hon. Dean Barrow is tonight out of the country as he traveled to the Dominican Republic for the handing over of the SICA Presidency to Belize for the six-month period commencing July 1st, 2014.

66 Public Servants Honoured For Public Service Day
Over the last months, Public Service information day was held in each district and members of each department set up booths to educate the public on the work they perform and the services offered. Minister of Public Service Charles Gibson has said that the occasion serves to help the government employees learn more about what the customer needs and is looking for and how they can improve on their service delivery. Today, June 23rd, is national Public Service Day. The United Nations’ Public Service Day is held on June 23rd each year as well and the event serves to recognize that democracy and successful governance are built on the foundation of a competent civil service.

Conch Will Be Off Season July First
Attention conch ceviche lovers, conch will be out off season effectively July first. Anyone caught handling the sea food will be liable to prosecution under the laws of Belize says the Belize Fisheries Department. The department issued a release alerting the public on the closing day stressing that failure to comply with the closed season will result in prosecution in court under Regulation 3 (1) (b) of the Fisheries Regulations, Chapter 210 of the Subsidiary Laws of Belize Revised edition 2003. Anyone knowing of illegal conch harvesting is urged to call the department at 224-4552 / 203-2623 to make a report.

US Group Visits Belize To Learn About Women Issues And Other Cultures
A group of women educators are in Belize from the US and will be travelling across the country in an effort of learning more from our culture and people. The group arrived in Belize on Sunday and has been to San Ignacio and today visited with Mrs. Ofelia Novelo, founder of Mujeres Ayudando a Mujeres a Superarse, MAMAS in Orange Walk Town. The women are led in part by Annice Allen who told us more about their visit. Annice Allen “We are here as a part of the full braid haze group project abroad and it is funded by the United States Department of Education and we are here in an effort to further develop our curriculums each member of the group, we are developing our curriculums so a part of what we are doing is trying to expose educators to other cultures and we have chosen Belize as a place to immerse ourselves into the culture so that when we go back to the United States we can teach our students more broadly about the world. The Belizean culture provided us for an avenue to really look at women issue which is our major focus is on women’s issues. As you know the world is getting smaller and we heard a lot about globalization and global education so part of what we want to do is to take our children and not let them see and to help them see beyond the US and there are other people’s in the world and that they have a different understanding about the world or maybe a similar understanding but they use different tools that is available in your environment and so our way of life is not the only way of life there is.”


George McKenzie Jr. Faces Attempted Murder Charge
George McKenzie Junior was charged with attempted murder when he appeared today before Magistrate Herbert Panton. No plea was taken because the offence is indictable. Mckenzie was remanded into custody until August 14. The charge is in relation to a shooting incident that occurred about eight months ago. The victim, Paul Alvarez Jr, was shot in his neck while he was in Jenny Shop, located at the corner of Victoria Street and Lovely Lane.

Taxi Man Faces Eviction, Police Brutality and Marital Problems, Claiming Wife Is Intimate with Senior Policeman
The Public Standards Branch of the Belize Police Department has launched an investigation into the complaint against two police officers attached to the San Ignacio Police Station after an incident occurred in that municipality that left both Sergeant Octaviano Victorin and the complainant, a taxi driver, 39-year-old, Ernesto Chan bearing injuries as a result of a scuffle that occurred last Thursday night, June 19. Chan made his rounds to several media houses yesterday in an effort to sensitize the public on the alleged abuse of power being displayed by some officers from that station, particularly towards him. Yesterday, during our investigation of the story, Love News managed to talk to one of the accused officers, Sergeant Victorin, who gave us his version of what transpired, saying that Chan initiated the aggression against him.

Authorities Desperately Seek Baby Germayoni
An infant one student remains missing up to news time after she was reportedly abducted from her school in Benque Viejo del Carmen, Cayo District. Love News spoke to the Officer in Charge of Benque Viejo, Superintendent Dinsdale Thompson, who gave us an update of the on-going search for 6-year-old, Germayoni Asucena Cancinos Letran. SUPERINTENDENT DINSDALE THOMPSON “Sometime around 8:30/9am this morning, a male Guatemalan national entered the police station and reported that her daughter, Germayoni Asucena Cancinos Letran, a six year old Guatemalan child who is attending Seventh Day Adventist Primary School here in Benque Viejo Town had been abducted by the little girl’s mom cousin, a female as well and he was unable to find her. What we did was interview him and other individuals along with students as well who did confirm his report that yes, baby Letran was abducted by a Guatemalan female individual who we are at this moment looking for. We do believe that she was taken back into Guatemala; we have not confirmed that; we still have not found her at this moment as yet.

Case of Compressed Cocaine, Police and Customs Officers Makes it To Court of Appeals
Five police officers accused of having part in the landing and offloading a drug plane on November 13, 2010 were acquitted by Justice Denis Hanomansingh in December of 2012. The men accused are Corporal Renel Grant, Corporal Nelson Middleton, Sergeant Lawrence Humes, Customs Boatman Harold Usher, Sergeant Jacinto Roches, and civilian Victor Logan who were all charged with abetment to commit a crime. However, the Director of Public Prosecution, Cheryl-Lynn Vidal, is seeking to appeal that acquittal and this afternoon the Court of Appeal heard her arguments. Vidal told the court that the trail judge made an error when he found that the evidence submitted was not enough. In court today the men were represented by attorneys Hubert Elrington, Anthony Sylvestre, and Simeon Sampson. Sylvestre objected to the application for leave to appeal stating the Vidal did not file her applications before the required time of 21 days from the date of the decision. Arguments ended late this evening and will continue on Friday. Viewers may recall that on November 13, 2010, a twin Engine Beechcraft King Air 200 landed in the Bladden Area of the Southern Highway. Inside the plane were thousands of pounds of compressed cocaine and the men are being accused of assisting in landing the plane.

Christian Workers Reunites with NTUCB
In October of last year, the National Trade Union Congress of Belize expelled the Christian Workers Union but tonight but parties are reunited. A release from the NTUCB states that the CWU has been reinstated as a member of the NTUCB. The CWU was ejected as a member of the Umbrella Union after the union did not meet its financial obligations to the NTUCB. Key members of the union ventilated their anger at the past President, Antonio Gonzalez and Secretary James McFoy who were blamed for the terrible financial status of the Union back then. After pressure from its members Gonzalez and McFoy did not seek reelection and in December of 2013, after the CWU conducted free, fair and transparent elections, securing a governance structure aligned to its constitution, the NTUCB has been working with the CWU to restore the union to its rightful place under the Congress’ umbrella. The CWU’s new president is Attorney Audrey Matura Shepherd. A release from the NTUCB states that the CWU has been reinstated with all entitlements, in accordance with the terms and conditions outlined in their constitution.

Forensics Training: Pass or Leave the Unit
Today marked the start of a one year skills training for Belize’s Scene of Crime Technicians. The training is being facilitated by the National Forensic Science Service Department and the US Embassy trough the expertise of Advisor, Hayden B. Baldwin who is the Executive Director of the International Crime Scene Investigators Association. The crime scenes technicians at the National Forensic Science Service will also be using high quality tools for them to do their work effectively and efficiently. We were at the ceremonies this morning and here is what Baldwin and the Executive Director of the National Forensic Science Service, David Henderson, had to say about the initiative. HAYDEN B. BALDWIN “Scenes of crime technicians are going to receive a level of training above what they currently have and that level will take them to international standards. In order to accomplish that it will take about one year of training. I will be here for two weeks each month for the next year to go to a very intense and long training that is going to challenge them to make sure that they are the forensic experts that they will become. It is the same standard of evidence as basic is that we’re still looking at photography, latent work meaning fingerprints, palm prints, shoe impressions, going into impression evidence which is shoe prints, tire tracks, bite marks, tool marks then into biological and trace evidence where they’ll be able to use forensic light sources to look for bodily fluid at the crime scenes. Trace evidence that can be recovered and taken to the forensic laboratory for analysis and then into changing the way that they write their reports, make crime scene sketches and the reading of the crime scene, also part of that is the interpretation of the crime scene. They’ll be using equipment that they do not currently have, the equipment will hopefully be purchased in the future so they will have it to use after the training is completed and it’s the same type of equipment they currently have it’s just more professional models of it.”

Re-acquisition Case Heads to The Caribbean Court of Justice
In the Court of Appeals today was Senior Counsel Eamon Courtenay on behalf of Fortis and other interested parties who are seeking to appeal the decision of the Court of Appeal in regards to the second acquisition of Belize Electricity Limited and Belize Telemedia Limited. Courtenay formally requested to take the matter to the Caribbean Court of Justice, Belize’s highest appellate court. The request was granted. The appeal came after a decision from the Court of Appeals was handed down on May 15, 2014 in a 300-page document setting aside the Supreme Court’s ruling that stated that the re-acquisition of both utility companies was unlawful,null and void. The case was that of the Attorney General and Minister of Public Utilities against BTL Employees’ Trust, Fortis Energy and British Caribbean Bank. It was a majority decision by the Court of Appeal, consisting of President Justice Manuel Sosa and Justice Samuel Awich.

Health Ministry Says Beware of Diet and Sexual Enhancement Drugs
A from the Ministry of Health is advising consumers not to purchase specific products being advertised as weight loss supplements over the internet. The advice came from the Unites States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), through the International Health Regulations of the World Health Organization. The products on the black list include Dr. Ming’s Chinese Capsule, 7 Days Herbal Slim, Sliming Diet Berry Plus, Asset Extreme, Slim Easy Herbs Capsule and Meizitang Citrus. According to the FDA, the products contain Sibutramine, (SI-BU-TRA-MIN) a controlled substance removed from the market in October 2010 due to the risk of serious cardiovascular events and strokes. Belizeans are also being advised not to purchase the following sexual enhancement products: CONTROL All Natural Sexual Enhancement and Best Whips.

Ambassador Moreno Says There is No LGBT Agenda
The ambassador of the United States Carlos Moreno presented his credentials to Governor General Sir Colville Young this morning after having arrived in the country on Sunday morning. But his arrival was not warmly welcomed by a five protestors lead by Belize Can’s Patrick Menzies. A few of them protested the post of Moreno and Menzies told us why. PATRICK MENZIES We oppose the fact that he was the only judge that went against PROP 8 in favor of families in California and was selected by Obama just like he did to the Dominican Republic by sending them a homosexual ambassador. We now have one that supports the LGBT agenda and mentioned, I read in the news where he mentioned that he is going to, basically my summary of it, teach us how to obey international law. My word to Obama and Mr. Moreno is to keep your abomination in Obama’s new nation and White House; this is not ‘Obamanation’; this is Belize, we have a constitution and we reject Obama, Moreno or anyone else that comes here and try to tell us to change our constitution or change our laws to fit Obama’s trash. Africa has been very clear, they don’t accept the trash. We are Belize, we are not the fifty second or fifty third state of Obama, We are Belize and we should be respected as a sovereign nation and that’s why you are out there.”


US Ambassador Presents Credentials to Governor General Amidst Protests
It is official. Retired U.S. judge Carlos Moreno, after giving his credentials to the Governor General of Belize His Excellency Sir Colville Young at the Belize House in Belmopan, was sworn in as the new U.S. Ambassador to Belize. But not everyone was happy.  A handful of people lead...

Ministry of Health Advisory on Specific Health Products
The Ministry of Health says it has received a public notification from the Unites States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), through the International Health Regulations of the World Health Organization, on health products that consumers are advised NOT to purchase. Consumers are advised not to purchase or use the...

Early Morning Shooting in Corozal
There was a shooting incident in Corozal early this morning. 47 year old Martin Guerra, a Belizean money changer of San Joaquin Village reported that sometime around 5:30 this morning,  he had visited his brother in Santa Rita Area. He was driving his blue dodge Caravan towards the Philip...

Guns Stolen from a Bar
A bar in Ontario Village, Cayo was broken into over the weekend. Stolen  from the establishment were three fire arms. According to police, based on finger print matches, one person, a relative of an employee at the bar, was detained and charged for burglary and kept unlicensed firearm and...

NTUCB Welcomes Back CWU Into its Fold
The National Trade Union Congress of Belize has announced that the Christian Workers’ Union (CWU)  has been re admitted into the fold of the Congress family. CWU was kicked out of the NTUCB October of last year after CWU failed to carry out elections in a timely manner. But...

Accused Con-man Brought to Court
Police believe they have the man who is alleged to have gone on a spree of deception in Belize City, targeting older persons by posing as a bill collector for Belize Electricity Limited, among other things. On Monday, 49 year old Curl Gordon, also known as “Doggy”, a laborer...

Townsend Murder Still Under Investigation 6 Months Later
The very tragic murders of Brian Townsend on Christmas day and on Isidoro Bonilla on December 13th,  believed to be linked, rocked the nation’s capital in 2013. Belmopan police immediately launched an intensive investigation which lead them to three suspects. Then, in a twist of events, two of the...

George McKenzie Jr. Charged with Attempted Murder
George Mckenzie, Jr., the son of George “Junie Balls” Mckenzie, was charged with attempted murder of Paul Alvarez when he appeared today before Magistrate Herbert Panton. Mckenzie was remanded into custody until August 14. Alvarez was shot in his neck while he was in Jenny Shop, located at the corner...

Southern Highway Cocaine Plane Case Appealed
Police officers Corporal Renel Grant, Corporal Nelson Middleton, Sergeant Lawrence Humes, and Sergeant Jacinto Roches; former Customs boatman Harold Usher, and civilian Victor Logan, were accused of facilitating one of the largest cocaine busts on record in Belize. A plane famously landed on the Southern Highway on November 13, 2010, and...

Office of the Prime Minister says Attacks on Justice Awich by Bar Association are Contemptuous
A lengthy press release from the Office of the Prime Minster has sprung back at the Bar Association and its president, Eamon Courtney for statements made in opposition of the re-appointment of  Justice of Appeal Samuel Awich. The release says that the Office of the Prime Minister has noted...


Lands million-dollar screw-up
A multi-million dollar airline maintenance facility that is presently under construction by Tropic Air in San Pedro Town has been brought to a standstill following the recent issuance of an injunction order which came about after it came to light that two other private landowners both possess separate land titles within the same area due to an apparent mix-up by the Lands Department concerning the layout of the property and the scope of the titles. The two landowners are Brett Feinstein – who got a title in April 2014 – and Marilee Pou. Tropic Air’s problems are with Feinstein. In December 2013, Tropic Air Limited, a local airline company, started construction on a high-tech maintenance facility to substantially expand their operations on the island; however, the Central Building Authority has placed works on hold via a cease-and-desist order sought by Construction Depot Limited – which is a member of the Benny’s Group of Companies – whose proprietor, Brett Feinstein, also has a claim on a significant portion of that same property.

Pit bulls attack, man discharges firearm; cops charge man!
A San Pedro resident whom police charged with one count of discharging a firearm in public is planning to sue the Police Department for false imprisonment after he spent 13 days in custody and his case was dismissed today, without trial, when he appeared before Magistrate Dale Cayetano. Byron Evans, 33, was arrested and charged by San Pedro police on Tuesday, June 10, after he allegedly discharged his licensed .38 pistol in a public place. San Pedro police, after conducting an investigation into the incident, arrested and charged Evans with one count of discharging a firearm within 40 yards of a public place. Evans reportedly was about to be attacked by two pit bulls, which were roaming free on Tarpon Street. He drew his gun and fired one shot at the approaching dogs. The shot did not hit any of the dogs; neither did it hit anyone.

New US Ambassador takes office Tuesday
The new US Ambassador to Belize, Carlos Moreno, 65, arrived in Belize over the weekend and is due to assume official duties tomorrow, Tuesday, after presenting his credentials to Belize’s Governor-General Sir Colville Young. Moreno will then take over from Chargé d’Affaires, Margaret Hawthorne, who has been leading the US Mission in Belize since the departure of the former US Ambassador to Belize, Vinai Thummalapally, in 2013. The US Ambassador Designate, a native of Los Angeles with Mexican parentage, is accompanied in Belize by his wife, Christine. In a video produced by the US Department of State’s Bureau of International Information Programs in October 2013, Moreno said, “The words ‘Equal Justice for All’ serve as a guiding principle for me and for a free democracy.”

Missing key murder witness = nolle prosequi
A Belize City man who has been accused of the January 2009 shooting death of Barney Cunningham, 20, was freed of the murder charge and three counts of attempted murder when the prosecution indicated to the court that its key witness for the trial could not be located. This morning, when Supreme Court Justice John “Troadio” Gonzalez told Marlon Foreman, 27, that he was free to go, Foreman literally ran out of the courtroom. With the paperwork indicating the prosecution’s intention of entering a nolle prosequi in the case having been completed last week, Foreman, who had been on remand since 2009, could have regained his freedom last Friday, but his freedom was delayed until after the weekend.

Michael Silva’s murder case committed to the Supreme Court
Michael Silva, 28, who has been charged with murder for the death of Maritza Santos, 19, a domestic of Hillview, and who has been on remand at the Belize Central Prison since November 2013, was brought to the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court today, where the murder charge was read to him. He was committed to trial at the upcoming October session of the Supreme Court. Police have accused Silva of killing Santos by beating her in the head, and then trying to commit suicide by drinking the poison Paraquat. Santos died, but Silva survived. First he was taken to a private hospital in Belize City, and then he was taken to Guatemala for treatment for the internal injuries he suffered.

Belize to assume presidency of Central American Integration System — SICA
Belize Prime Minister Dean Barrow left Belize today, Monday, en route to the Dominican Republic where that country’s president will hand over the 6-month pro-tempore presidency of the Central American Integration System (SICA in Spanish) to Belize, effective July 1, 2014, according to a press release from the Office of the Prime Minister. Official sources in the Dominican Republic have announced that Heads of State and Government from Central America and the Dominican Republic are scheduled to meet in Punta Cana this Friday, 27th June 2014. They added that key officials from the European Union and the United States, as well as ministers of foreign relations of Turkey and New Zealand, are expected to attend the meeting.

Arson in August Pine Ridge
The home of a family of August Pine Ridge, Orange Walk District, was destroyed by a fire which is believed to have been deliberately caused, and police are searching for a resident of the same village in connection with the incident. Elder Oliva, 27, told police that at about 7:00 Friday evening, he and his brother, Jairo Chi, 28, who lives with him, locked their house and went out. On their return at about 11:00 that night, they saw a man, whom they knew, riding away on a bicycle from their house, and then saw that their house was engulfed in flames.

Shooting on Ben Bow Street
Three men are alive after a gunman fired at them at about 7:00 Saturday evening on Ben Bow Street. One victim suffered a gunshot injury to his right arm, but the other two men were unhurt. Javan Clare 19, a student of Iguana Street, Belize City, told police that at about 7:00 Saturday evening, he and two of his friends were transporting two sound system speakers to Ben Bow Street on a carrier cycle to play for a party at the preschool in the area, when a man on a bicycle rode up behind them and fired at them. He then escaped out of the area. The three men scrambled for cover, but Clare was hit by one of the bullets.
Corozal police are seeking Wilbert Carcamo of Libertad after he allegedly almost knocked down a couple with his vehicle while they were walking on the Libertad Road at about 7:00 yesterday evening. According to a report made to police, Carcamo then beat up the husband in front of his wife and then sped off when other villagers came to the victim’s aid. Andrew Lopez, 24, a laborer of Xaibe, told police that he and his wife were walking on the main road in Libertad to the bus stop at the junction of the road and the Philip Goldson Highway, when, at a distance of about three lampposts from the bus stop, he saw a vehicle coming towards them.

Court of Appeal will impose reduced sentence for Lavern Longsworth’s murder conviction
Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth, 40, who was convicted of the July 2010 murder of her common-law husband David White and is serving a life sentence in prison, appeared in the Court of Appeal today, where she was expecting to be handed a new sentence. But the sentencing has been put off until next week Friday, when the three Justices of Appeal will determine what sentence to impose on Longsworth. Her attorneys, Godfrey Smith, S.C., and Leslie Mendez, did not agree with the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl-Lynn Vidal, who felt that a ten-year sentence was appropriate. Mendez, however, wanted Longworth’s sentence to be the three and a half years that she has already served. DPP Vidal, however, rejected that suggestion, saying that the imposition of a sentence for time already served would be an affront to justice. The DPP suggested that she serve a ten-year sentence.

Editorial: Strange Sedi
During the 2008 general election campaign, Kremandala supported the United Democratic Party (UDP) Pickstock constituency candidate, Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington, with all the media resources at our disposal. The then ruling People’s United Party (PUP) had never lost Pickstock before. Kremandala supported Mr. Elrington because it was clear that the incumbent PUP Pickstock candidate – Godfrey Smith, was a special favorite of Lord Michael Ashcroft’s. The two had travelled together in Africa in the Lord’s private jet. In March of 2007, Lord Ashcroft had instructed his lawyers in Belize, the Barrow & Williams law firm, to write the Kremandala chairman threatening him with lawsuits because of a 10 percent share of KREM Radio which had not been transferred to him in 1994, and because, according to attorney Rodwell Williams, who was and is the law partner of now Prime Minister, Dean Barrow, Kremandala owed the Belize Bank in the neighborhood of $262,000, which did not include special penalties. For Kremandala, needless to say, the attack was traumatic.

From The Publisher
In a matter of less than three decades, Buttonwood Bay (originally Belama) has become an impressive residential community which boasts the Honorable Prime Minister as one of its residents. This was all mangrove swamp before the late 1970s. A Panamanian named Javier Berbey Garcia came to Belize in the mid/late 1970s, and he is the one who created Bella Vista, the community which is just to the north of Buttonwood Bay. I believe Javier was a member of the ruling family in Panama which featured General Omar Torrijos as the big man. Belize Premier, Hon. George Price, and General Torrijos had become good friends, and out of this friendship Berbey Garcia came to Belize and began real estate and construction business here. Bella Vista was his first creation. Bella Vista, a seafront community, was the first Belize City real estate project which featured canals cut into the dredging land fill. The canals helped to drain the swampy land, while providing access into their lots for rich residents who owned power boats. All the original landowners who invested in Bella Vista were Belizeans who had money.

To: Clinton Can-Uh Luna, from Frank M.
I’m writing in response to your report in the May 25th issue of the Amandala – FRIENDS OF CUBA GATHER IN BELIZE CITY. You said that in the short future an organization may be officially formed by the friends of Cuba. Interesting; I’ll wait to see. Personally, I’m not impressed by or with the socio-political and civic involvement of the many Belizeans who have returned from study in Cuba. Their socio-political involvement fell short of my expectation. To be frank, I’m disappointed by it. I neither hear about nor see them as a group or individually promoting any socio-political ideas that could help to make ours a more fair society. Do you? I’m not proposing that we adopt the one-party system of Cuba but there are some good things in the Cuban system that we can adopt to make ours a more fair society like Cuba’s without adopting the one-party system.
Belize has been placed on a tier 2 watch list – a step downward from its previous tier 2 ranking in 2013 – by the US State Department, according to its 2014 Trafficking In Persons, which states that the Government of Belize “did not demonstrate overall increasing anti-trafficking efforts compared to the previous reporting period.” Luis CdeBaca, Ambassador-at-Large of the Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons, said via teleconference on Friday that, “The tier 2 watch list is kind of like a ‘C minus’ or something like that in the American grading system. It’s warning to the countries that are on the watch list that they are in danger of falling to tier 3.” (The rankings range from tier 1 to 3, with three being the lowest rank.) As it did in its 2013 report, which suggested that Belize had been making significant efforts to ensure compliance with the US guidelines, the US State Department in its 2014 report pointed to “coerced prostitution of children,” “child sex tourism” and forced labor in Asian restaurants and shops here in Belize.

Constable Marroquin released on bail for attempted murder
A police officer from San Ignacio Town who was recently charged for attempted murder, harm, and use of deadly means of harm upon a teenager from Unitedville was granted bail today at the Supreme Court in Belize City. Justice John “Troadio” Gonzalez offered Police Constable Jesus Marroquin, 31, Supreme Court bail of $8,000 for the offense of attempted murder at around 11:00 a.m. this morning. Last Friday, June 13, Marroquin and three other officers from the police’s Quick Response Team in San Ignacio were arraigned in the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court in connection with the May 25 shooting of Elston Arnold, 19, who was shot in the back during an alleged altercation between the four officers and a group of youths near a bus stop in Unitedville.

5 years for Jason Williams, 34
A Belize City man whom the police’s Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) charged with possession of an unlicensed firearm and ammunition and one count of handling stolen goods was found guilty of the charges this morning, when his trial before Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith concluded. Chief Magistrate Smith, before imposing the two 5-year sentences for the firearm and ammunition possession charges, told Jason Joseph Williams, 34, a resident of Belmopan and clothing seller: “Your defense is a Disney Channel fabrication.” Smith stipulated that the sentences are to run concurrently. Williams, who has a charge of theft pending before the court, was sentenced to an additional six months for the handling stolen goods charge.

Court hears GOB appeal in case of award granted to street figures
A successful lawsuit against the government which was won by three well-known street figures – 2 of whom are now deceased – in November 2011 was later appealed by the Government of Belize (GOB), and that case went before the Court of Appeal today. However, after arguments from both sides were heard, judgment has been reserved for a date to be announced. The three men – Shelton “Pinky” Tillett, Charles Woodeye, and Micah Thompson – successfully sued GOB for wrongful imprisonment after the Supreme Court ruled that they were wrongfully accused of the 2009 murder of John Paul Saldivar, 28, which occurred on Ambergris Caye. Tillett, Woodeye and Thompson were charged for Saldivar’s murder, and after 11 months on remand at the Belize Central Prison, they were set free in January of 2010, with no case to answer, since the case against them did not proceed to trial due to a lack of evidence.

Collision in San Ignacio
Two vehicles collided on the George Price Highway at about 5:30 Sunday evening, and three of the individuals who were in the vehicles received minor injuries. The vehicles were not damaged extensively, and both drivers were charged by police. Eli Eleazar Obando, 30, an employee of BTL, told police that he was travelling from Benque Viejo to San Ignacio, and he had indicated that he was turning to the left in front of Chuc’s Gas Station in San Ignacio. He checked his mirror to clear traffic, he said, but did not see any vehicle behind him, and so he proceeded to make the left turn, but while turning, a vehicle suddenly came up and slammed into the driver side of his vehicle, causing his vehicle to spin out of control and overturn.
A former resident of Belize City, Wentworth Hemmings, who now lives in Phoenix in the United States, has been sentenced today after a hostage situation that lasted more than nine hours. Judge Bruce Cohen sentenced Hemmings, 40, to 31 years in prison and lifetime probation with sex offender terms, according to the court spokesperson. Hemmings was charged with one count of attempted first-degree murder, six counts of aggravated assault with a deadly weapon, six counts of kidnapping and two counts of sexual assault. Police said that in October 2011, Hemmings entered the home of his former girlfriend, who had a restraining order against him. Four of the ex-girlfriend’s children were asleep at the time. Once they awoke, Hemmings threatened the 35-year-old woman and her children at gunpoint.

Patrick JonesPJ

Accused con man charged in court
Police say they have the man who is alleged to have gone on a spree of deception in Belize City, targeting older persons by posing as a bill collector for Belize Electricity Limited, among other things. On Monday, forty-nine year old Curl Gordon, a.k.a. “Doggy”, a laborer of […]

Global Fund to assist fight with HIV and TB
Tuberculosis may not be on the national radar as a endemic disease, but HIV certainly is. A primary funder of programs fighting these two diseases as well as malaria, the Global Fund, is conducting a review of past grant funding and future initiatives. Portfolio manager Matthew MacGregor says […]

Crime scene technicians to be trained to international standard
Belize’s Scenes of Crime technicians began a one-year training today sponsored by the U.S. Embassy which intends to raise their knowledge and practical application of crime scene investigative techniques to the highest standard. Hayden Baldwin, the Executive Director of the International Crime Scene Investigators Association, says that with […]

Woman shoplifted drink from supermarket
A woman accused of shoplifting must find over $150 in court fines to pay. 58 year old Natalie Arnold of Belize City went to the Everyday Supermarket in Hattieville and took out a bottle of Coca Cola and a bottle of Giffitti, a Guatemalan Caribbean specialty rustic hard […]

Troy Augustus changes plea
Eighteen year old Troy Augustus, who pleaded guilty to committing a mischievous act yesterday changed his plea to not guilty today. August made the switch when he appeared today before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stuart for sentencing. Augustus was released on a bail of $300 and his case was […]

Cayo Tour Guide Association Launches First Ever Tourism Summer Camp
In this post, I introduce Joe Awe, the president of the Cayo Tour Guide Association (CTGA) about their upcoming tourism eco summer camp. Larry Waight: Why did the Cayo Tour Guide Association decide to invest energy into this first ever Tourism Eco Summer Camp? Joe Awe: Legacy. What good is a great organization, whether for profit or not, if it does not invest in a social option which not only will help and engage the future of this country but also allow guides to celebrate their decisions to become guides in the first place. This is an opportunity that will give the young dreams and make our guides give of their time and passions.


Happy Summer Solstice 2014!
At Chaa Creek, celebrating the summer solstice is part of a local tradition going back thousands of years. Long before western telescopes came into use, the ancient Maya were busily recording the solstices with astounding accuracy and marking the exact day with ritual celebrations. The Summer Solstice, widely considered to be the first day of summer, falls on June 21 in the northern hemisphere, making it the longest day of the year. And, of course, June 21 in the southern hemisphere is the winter solstice with the shortest day of the year. Many cultures throughout history have marked and celebrated the solstices, but the ancient Maya; the most accomplished astronomers of ancient time, pinpointed it and other cosmic events with astounding accuracy and precisely charted the positions of planets and other celestial bodies well into the future. So the Maya priestly astronomers working out of Xunantunich and preparing to celebrate the solstice in, say, 314 AD, would have calculated the exact arrangement of celestial bodies and known what the skies above Chaa Creek would look like in 2014. Pretty impressive, when you think about it.

Big Block Party San Pedro Lobsterfest 2014
Crawlers finished their week long marathon around the island with a bang at the big block party for San Pedro Lobsterfest 2014. The welcome speech was scheduled at 4:45, but that did not stop people from coming out early to watch booths being set up and be first in line for a multitude of scrummy lobster treats. After enjoying world famous San Pedro spiny lobster, party goers kept the party going with delicious lobster themed cocktails and ice cold Belikin beer. If you missed it this one and are thinking about San Pedro lobsterfest 2015 (like a few people I know), the 2014 block party line up on the San Pedro Lobster Festival facebook page will help convince you to start planning for next year. Some first timers come for part of the festival and do not book themselves on the island for for the best part – the big street party. A quick glance at June 2015 calendar shows the block party will likely be Saturday June 20th. Stay tuned to The official San Pedro Lobsterfest website for Lobsterfest 2015 dates and schedule of the weeks events. You can see more party pictures on the San Pedro Lobster Festival facebook page photo stream.

International Sourcesizz

Green Globe CEO, Guest Speaker at Belize Tourism Industry Association 29th Bi-Annual General Meeting
Green Globe CEO Mr Guido Bauer has been invited to address the 29th Bi-Annual General meeting of the Belize Tourism Industry Association (BTIA) on the 9th of July 2014 at the Best Western Belize Biltmore Plaza. Mr Guido Bauer will present insights into how certification benefits tourism operators. Using working examples, Mr Bauer will discuss how Green Globe has assisted a variety of businesses in Belize to organize their great efforts in environmental conservation, and care for local communities and people, into practical sustainability management plans. This process has led not only to international recognition through Certification by Green Globe, but has had a direct impact in bringing more business and greater customer satisfaction.

Increasing numbers of tourists uncover Belize treasures
A naturally beautiful, near-magical place, of exotic black orchids, mysterious Mayan history and the flaming colours of wild toucans and scarlet macaws, Belize is undoubtedly magnetising. Yet, it remains one of the final unspoilt jewels in Central America's crown. The country, which ranges around 20,000 km², is known for its diversity of flora and fauna that is second to none and makes for an enthralling experience. Spanning rich rainforests - home to tapirs who swim in the rivers and colourful motmots who dot the trees - and near-endless barrier reefs - the longest in the world - it is no surprise that Belize is growing in popularity as a to-visit destination. The Caribbean Tourism Organization (CTO) recently released figures showing Belize coming in at second place on the list of fastest growing tourist destinations in the Caribbean in the first quarter of 2014, behind only the Turks and Caicos Islands. The country registered 32,712 tourist arrivals in February, an impressive increase of 11.6% in the number of people discovering Belizean treasures on the same month the previous year. This healthy growth was complemented by interesting figures, also released by the CTO, which broke these arrivals down in terms of the main markets that were visiting. These figures showed an increase of 11% in US visitor numbers in the first quarter of 2014 as well as a vast growth of 26.6% in visitors from Europe.

Services Airman keeps Task Force billeted, fed and entertained
He’s one of the busiest Airmen assigned to the U.S. Southern Command sponsored New Horizons exercise in Belize. As the lodging representative he makes room assignments, tracks personnel accountability and works with the host nation hotel to make sure things like laundry, dining and housekeeping practices are meeting government standards. Senior Airman Mario Acevedo, a New Horizons Services journeyman deployed from the 820th RED HORSE Squadron, Nellis Air Force Base, Nevada, also plans morale trips, barbeques, movie nights and sports and fitness activities. When he’s done with all of that he issues MREs to more than 560 personnel, delivers breakfast to two engineering constructions sites in Belize City each morning and also assists with switching out Belizean Defence Force security guards at the end and beginning of their shifts.

7 "Next-Easiest" Overseas Retirement Destinations
We won't name just one spot in tiny Belize. It's only about the size of Rhode Island, so should you decide to explore this Central American country (tucked beside the Caribbean Sea just south of Mexico's Yucatán Peninsula), you can easily check out the entire country in just a few days. Our favorite retirement spots include the inland Cayo district, the Corozal district to the north at the border with Mexico; the island of Ambergris Caye; and Placencia town farther south along the coastal mainland. Belize has much to offer: it's just a two-hour flight from Miami and the official language is English. If you love water sports, this is your place. You can fish, dive, and snorkel to your heart's content along its luscious barrier reef. You'll enjoy a typical Caribbean lifestyle here...think swaying palms, white sands, and turquoise waters accompanied by a lilting reggae beat. There are some downsides to living here. There can be hurricanes. Also, Belize isn't known for its medical care. For anything serious you'll need to head across the border to Chetumal, Mexico. And because Belize isn't a manufacturing hub nor does it enjoy a lot of agricultural diversity, you'll pay more for imported items (which is just about everything).

Weston Author Recounts Diving With Cousteau In Norwalk Talk
After graduating Weston High School in 1973, Richard Hyman met Jacques Cousteau and got a chance over the years to take several expeditions with the famous undersea explorer aboard his research vessel Calypso. "I wanted to do my little part to keep Cousteau's memory alive, particularly for the youngsters that might have never heard of Jacques Cousteau," Hyman said. "If I can reach some of them, it's a way to carry on his legacy." His father was a business partner of Cousteau's. After traveling to Los Angeles to meet with the explorer after high school, he was invited to drive a supply truck from California to Saskatchewan, where Cousteau's crew was working on a documentary about beavers. He went on three expeditions aboard Calypso over the next six years, including trips to document spiny lobsters off the coast of Mexico, journeys to the Belize Barrier Reef, and diving down to the wreck of the USS Monitor off the coast of North Carolina.

Lufkin eye doctor makes impact in Central America
Doctor Richard Ruckman said his recent trip to Belize mad not only an impact on his patients but on him as well. "I think this [mission] is worthwhile," Ruckman said. "It has made me a believer." Ruckman left his position at The Center for Sight for one week to perform surgeries in a remote and poor area of the Central American Country. The trip was with the non-profit Benevolent Mission International. Ruckman said he is used to seeing many of the cases he saw, but was also amazed at the age of many patients. "For many of these individuals this was their first ever eye exam," Ruckman said. "We would see school children come in and be amazed at their need for glasses." Ruckman was joined by doctors and volunteers from all over the United States to perform the surgeries on the native people. "To me the biggest challenge was walking in to a strange clinic and operating room environment," Ruckman said. "But then you just remember what you were trained for and figure it all out." Ruckman said he was amazed by the response of the patients.

Local prof digs her way to big praise
A professor out of Oshawa has earned a coveted grant for her excavation work at an ancient site in Central America. Dr. Helen Haines, an anthropology professor at Trent University Oshawa, was given the $20,000 grant by the National Geographic Society’s Committee for Research and Exploration. Dr. Haines has been conducting research on Maya culture in northern Belize for 25 years, a release from the university says. She is currently the director of the Ka’Kabish Archaeological Research Project (KARP), which is focused on understanding the development of social stratification and its transformative role in the development of early states. Dr. Haines was thrilled to learn that she and her team will receive funding from the National Geographic Society, stating the grant will provide immense help with the support of student research and project infrastructure, the release says. “I am deeply honoured to be receiving a National Geographic Society grant,” she says. “I remember reading National Geographic journals as a child, and to think that I might one day be featured in one of their volumes is a dream come true.” She says her dream of becoming an archaeologist began when she found a book about Heinrich Schliemann’s discovery of Troy in the library of her elementary school. “I fell in love with the idea that someone could read about one of these myths and then actually go and find it,” she explains.

The 10 world cities with the highest murder rates – in pictures
4: Belize City. (Murder rate: 105.1 in 2011) The one-time British colony of Belize has the third highest national murder rate in the world. The majority of the homicides take place in the former capital of Belize City where gang violence is rampant, especially on the south side.


Video: Chikungunya: the virus that "bends up", 4min.
Chikungunya is a virus transmitted by Aedes aegypi and Aedes albopictus mosquitoes (the same mosquito species that transmit dengue). The virus's name comes from the Makonde language of Tanzania and means "that which bends up."

Video: Belize, 15min.
Ambergris Caye - Caye Caulker - Pine Mountain Reserve

Video: Culture of Belize: Informative Speech, 6min.

Video: Holy Cross Belize Graduation 2014, 4min.
Highlights from the 2014 graduation. Enjoy.

Video: The Blue Hole, Belize, 7min.
Scuba Diving The Blue Hole in Belize and two near-by reefs through Frenchies Dive School in June 2014. Filmed and Edited by Maxwell Harrington

Video: Science Hope for Sharks and Reefs in Belize, 6min. video on Glover's Reef, Shark Population Study. The benefits of marine reserves.

Video: A Minute of Beach Time, Placencia Belize, 1min.
6AM Wave breaking on the Beach of Placencia, Belize.

Video: Fairtrade in Belize - Working together for success, 4min.
A film about the impact that Fairtrade has had for sugar farmers in Belize.

Video: Indian Church Primary School, Belize, 8min.
Students at Indian Church Primary School practice and perform their dance moves for the Orange Walk district competition.

Video: Blue Hole - Belize, 4min.
with Ramon's Village diving.

June 24, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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

Editorial: Belize football scores big with FIFA funding
All eyes have been glued to the tube this week as football fans gather to watch the 2014 World Cup games. Hosted by the Fédération Internationale de Football Association (FIFA), there has been plenty of debate about who all will profit from the copious amounts of money the event will earn. As if on cue, FIFA issued a press release on June 11th stating, “FIFA has allocated $200 million dollars in bonuses to its national federations and confederations, as part of the $4,500 million to be raised from the World Cup. Each of the 209 members of the governing body of world football this month will receive $250,000 and $500,000 additionally early next year.” As one of the 209 FIFA members, our Belize Football Federation (BFF) will soon be coming into some easy, but well-deserved funding. The FIFA funding is designated to develop the world’s most popular sport, and Belizean players would benefit from training opportunities, team building, improved stadiums, local tournaments and more. With half a million Belize dollars promised this month, and a million dollars committed for next year, the future looks bright for Belizean football.

Conch Season to Close July 1st
The Belize Fisheries Department would like to take this opportunity to inform the general public that the conch season will be closed effective July 1st and it will remain closed until midnight of September 30th. As a reminder, we note that failure to comply with the close season will result in prosecution in court under Regulation 3 (1) (b) of the Fisheries Regulations, Chapter 210 of the Subsidiary Laws of Belize R.E. 2003. The Department hereby makes a special appeal to fishers and the public, to uphold the Fisheries Regulations in regards to conch and other marine products, and urges all responsible citizens to call the Department at 224-4552 / 203-2623 to report any infractions. The Department can also be reached by e-mail: or The public is assured that all information communicated to the Fisheries Department will be treated with the strictest of confidence!

Costa Maya Festival presents Miss Nicaragua
Katherine Elizabeth Guadamuz Tapia is the fourth beauty joining the bevy of beauties seeking to take home the title of Reina de la Costa Maya 2014-15. Katherine is proudly representing her country of Nicaragua, and she joins Karol Salinas of Panama, Ana Graciela of El Salvador and Maria Jose of Honduras in the lineup to take the stage on August 7, 2014. The 5’5 18-year-old stands is a beautiful dark-eyed brunette who enjoys working out. She is studying Customs Administration and Trade, and also models. Katherine will be onstage alongside representatives of Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, and Panama in a pageant that you just cannot miss!

San Pedro’s patron saint celebration has begun
Religious activities in connection with the island’s Patron, Saint Peter (San Pedro), commenced on the morning of Friday June 20th with “La Bajada” followed by “El Alba.” The activities are part of the annual catholic celebration that the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church, the San Pedro Town Council and the San Pedro House of Culture put together to honor the fishermen’s saint. At 5AM on June 20th a group of faithful Catholics, including mariachis, gathered at the church to start the nine-day tribute to Saint Peter. “La Bajada” is a special mass in which the Patron Saint Peter is brought down from its permanent elevated altar in the church. It signals to the churchgoers the commencement of nine days of “novenas” (prayers) leading up to the Patron’s day celebrated on June 29th.

Ambergris Today

Miss Nicaragua Contestant Announced for Costa Maya Festival
Katherine Guadamuz joins Miss Panama Karol Salinas, Miss El Salvador Ana Graciela and Miss Honduras Maria Jose Alvarado. The other Mundo Maya countries and Central American region have confirmed their participation at the pageant and the remaining four contestants will be announced in weeks to come, prior to their arrival to San Pedro, La Isla Bonita.

Rugby Belize Tackling Lack Of Youth Opportunities
Rugby Belize recently announced plans to establish community-based rugby union clubs right across the country, to provide opportunities for youth and young people to engage in sport. As a result of that initial announcement, plans are afoot to set up (initially) five such clubs in Belmopan, Belize City, Hattieville, Orange Walk and San Pedro. To advance these plans, Rugby Belize is now moving towards establishing a national governing authority for the sport.

Belize Fashion Week 2014 Schedule of Activites
June 20, 2014 Belize Fashion Week Team confirms this year’s BFW2014 which will be held in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize from October 9th – 12th 2014. International Designers will be announced at a later date. See below schedule of activities: October 9th 2014 – Opening/Social Event October 10th 2014 – Runway Shows (Local & International Designers) October 11th 2014 – Runway Shows (Local & International Designers) October 12th 2014 – Fashion Fest Locations and time schedules will be announced later. For more information please contact 629-3078/610-1880.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Corozal Sports Council summer camp
Corozal Sports Council will be holding a summer camp for children of the Corozal Community this July 23 - For more information contact the Corozal Sports Council.

Ambassador Carlos Moreno and his wife arrive
The U.S. Embassy is excited to announce that Ambassador Carlos Moreno and his wife arrived in Belize Saturday morning! Ambassador Moreno will present his credentials to the Government of Belize early next week and is eager to get out and meet the people of Belize. What places, events, organizations do you recommend he and Mrs. Moreno visit? See photos from his arrival here:

Market Day this morning at Corozal's Fish Wharf
across Mother's Park, in-front of Hotel Mirador.

Residents of Belmopan & Surrounding Communities to Enjoy Safer & Pleasant Road Infrastructure
Residents in the nation’s capital, the City of Belmopan and surrounding communities will soon enjoy a safer and pleasant road infrastructure to serve both residential and commercial activities as a result of the signing of a contract for the rehabilitation/paving of Almond Boulevard and Chiquibul Street. The street infrastructure project, valued at BZ $417,802.00 is financed by the Government of Belize through a loan from the World Bank under the Belize Municipal Development Project (BMDP). Signing the Contract on June 19, at SIF’s headquarters, Belmopan were the Executive Director, Social Investment Fund Mr. William Lamb Jr., Deputy Mayor, the Belmopan City Council, Ms. Anna Guy, the contractor, Mr. Jimmy Dueck of Synergy Construction of the Cayo District. Other officials present at the signing included the Project Coordinator, Mr. Ernest N. Raymond, and the Consultant, Mr. Carlton Young of Young’s Engineering Consultancy.


Cayo BTIA Public Meeting
The Cayo branch of the Belize Tourism Industry Association is having a general meeting, and they are inviting the public to attend. It'll start at 2:00pm this Thursday, June 26th, and be held at the Cayo Welcome Center conference room. Come see what the BTIA is all about.

Some 'Explosive' fun at San Pedro Lobster Fest Block Party
Flaming shots by San Pedro AIDS Commission.

Government of Belize Press Office

Belize Hotel Association (BHA) held its annual general meeting
Jun 23 - The Belize Hotel Association (BHA) held its annual general meeting on June 20, 2014 at the Belize Biltmore Plaza! BHA thanks all Tourism stakeholders and members who attended this event! Einer Gomez from Ramon's Village Resort was an excellent MC and Guest Speaker Mrs. Karen Bevans, Director of Tourism for the BTB could not have been more positive about collaborating with the Belize Hotel Association!

Panerrifix Jams at Lobsterfest
Panerrifix is taking their talent on the road, and playing at the Lobsterfests this year. This video was taken in San Pedro. The best steel band.

Western Ballaz Receive NEBL Awards
The Western Ballaz not only took 2nd place in the NEBL, they received numerous statistical awards, and 2 players received performance awards. Kurt Burgess was named Defensive Player of the Year, and Farron Lauriano was named Most Valuable Player. Congratulations on a great season, Western Ballaz!

San Antonio Animal Clinic
The vet students from the Institute for Sustainable International Studies had their animal clinic in San Antonio this weekend, where they saw over 70 animals. Thanks, ISIS! In related news, the ISIS students brought down books, and they were donated to the San Ignacio Public LIbrary. "Our large animal class went into the Maya Mountains to offer a free Animal Health clinic to the people of San Antonio"

June 15, 2014 - June 21, 2014 Report
It’s kinda like having a family reunion once a week these days. We are so thrilled that Simon Perkins visited us from Orvis. Jeremy – we love ya, and thank you Abby for joining the team from Orvis and landing your first bonefish on the fly. Your shared experience will help many newbies who seek to reach beyond their horizons. Dave Decker aka D2 and his lovely bride Gayle were here. Thanks for leaving me the latest Jackson Hole News and Guide – fishing reports from the rivers to da sea! Duber brought a big group of twenty five! Thank you. Aki, Chris and Mak – I think we will go through withdrawals unless you show up every few months. We are so proud of Mak and his young spirit is so inspiring for other young anglers getting into the game. We are truly blessed at El Pescador. Our “family” of returning guests continues to grow. While we need the experts out there to provide some direction, it is really you that share our sport. You sign up for your trip, get organized, shut out your work and daily responsibilities for a week and get recharged. Re-entry can be tough I know. . Others will ask questions – maybe they will want you to show them how to cast! Maybe they will want you to share which fly was working. Maybe they will be envious of your tan. Whatever it is, your spirit for discovery is infectious. Take credit! And for this, we thank you.

Channel 7

Appeal Court Upholds GOB Liability For ACES Riot
In August of 2012, the Supreme Court ruled that the Government is liable to pay compensation to Vince and Cherie Rose because the Mayan villagers of San Marcos Village burnt down their crocodile compound outside of PG Town. Well, the Government appealed that decision and lost today, which means that the Court of Appeal has upheld that liability. Viewers may remember that in August of 2010, 9 year-old Benjamin Rash and his 11 year-old sister, Onelia, went missing. After over 2 weeks of searching for them, a "witch doctor", Delfina Alvarez, allegedly gave the Rash family information that the siblings were being held at the Rose Family's crocodile facility in Forest Home Village, Toledo.

Mckenzie Jr. Charged Again, This Time For Att. Murder
George Mckenzie Jr - his name was in the news in April when a murder charge was withdrawn against him - after it had already gone to court. It was a first, but the DPP made the decision because a senior police officer had videotaped proof that the 19 year old was at another location when the crime occurred. But, police charged him today for another crime. This evening, Mckenzie Jr was charged for attempted murder, dangerous harm and use of deadly means OF harm for a shooting that happened eight months ago. That's when Paul Alvarez was shot on Lovely Lane. The report at that time was that a lone gunman was responsible - and a man named Albert Robinson was already charged. But, claiming to have new evidence, police re-opened the case and charged McKenzie today. His mother came to us outraged this evening; she says he's being systematically harassed by police because he is the son and namesake of George Junie Balls McKenzie Sr.:..

City Con Artist Caught
Since April, we've been telling you about a con artist who had been going around pretending to be either a BEL or BWSL collection agent, a cable guy or a repair-man, who's been preying on the elderly - and pinching cash or valuables when they turn their backs. Well, the man police believe to be responsible for at least two offences is 49 year old Curl Gordon, a.k.a. "Doggy", a laborer of a Pelican Street address. According an elderly woman, Effie Pollard, reported to the police that on February 21, 2014, Gordon stole her purse which contained $70. Another elderly woman, Marlin Rojas, reported to the police that on May 26, 2014, Gordon stole from her $220. She said that the money was in denominations of 2 $50 US currency notes and 1 $20 Belize currency note. Police investigated the reports for several months, and they eventually charged Gordon with 2 counts of theft. He was arraigned today before Magistrate Dale Cayetano, where he pled not guilty to the charges. He was offered a bail of $3,000 and his case was adjourned until August 15. Up until this evening, Gordon had not met bail.

Eugene Reneau Says He's No Rapist
In March, Eugene Reneau was remanded for rape. The BWSL Temp worker and father of 3 was accused of raping a woman at knife-point in a swamp off the side of the road. He was charged for rape and remanded for three months. But the story is far more complicated than that; in fact it is very complicated. And we can't really get into the details because we can't release or even point to the identity of the alleged victim. So, all we can say is that Reneau had a familiar relationship with her; they weren't strangers. In fact on that night he want at 2:30 am to pick her up from Los Lagos - and the allegation springs from that encounter. But, today - his 52nd birthday when he got out on bail after three months on remand - he came to clear his name: he says he didn't rape anyone:...

City Inspector Moves To SP; Participates In Drug Clean-Up
As you've seen on the news, crime has been getting out of hand on San Pedro recently, and a new Deputy Commander has been deployed to the island to lead a crack down. Inspector Henry Jemott - who earned a reputation as a tough street cop in Belize City - is now second in command on San Pedro - and he was part of operation Clear Water this weekend in the island town. Officers from San Pedro and Belize City participated - and they came up with quite a bit of retail drug packages. On Sunday night at 8:30, officers conducted searches in the San Pedrito Area of and recovered 7 transparent plastic bags of Cannabis weighing 200grams. Another search five minutes later in the same area turned up 2 transparent plastic bags of Cannabis weighing 350grams. In that same same round-up, police found 50 more small transparent plastic bags of Cannabis weighing 87.7grams. And then, at about 10:30pm Officers searched William Valentine's home on Swan Street. They found 5 zip lock plastic bags of Cocaine amounting to 2 grammes. Valentine was arrested and charged for drug trafficking.

Road Rage In Corozal
Corozal Police are investigating an assault that looks a lot like road rage. It happened at around 7 o'clock last night. 24 year-old Andrew Lopez of Xaibe Village told police that he was walking on the main Libertad road with his wife, and they were heading toward the bus stop at the Northern Highway intersection. He says that when he arrived under a lamp post, a vehicle almost ran him over. IT CAME SO CLOSE THAT he and his wife had to dive into nearby bushes to avoid being hit. Lopez says that he angrily shouted at the driver, who then stopped his vehicle and reversed it toward them. The driver jumped out with a wheel spanner in his hand, and rushed at Lopez. The man then clubbed him several times over the head and body with it, and it wasn't till a few of the neighbors intervened, that his attacker fled. He had to be rushed to the hospital, where his injuries were classified as dangerous harm. Police continue to look for the man who attacked him.

Cotton Tree Still Pressing Against Gov't.
On last Week Wednesday's newscast, we showed you the comments from Foreign Minister Wilfred Elrington who initiated the move by Government to acquire private land in Cotton Tree Village for his constituents. Elrington will get 60 lots for his division, and the other UDP divisions in the city will share up the other 180 parcels for their constituents. In that interview, he claimed that this land wasn't really inside Cotton Tree itself, it was across the road from the village. Well, the case that the Cotton Tree Village Council launched to block the Government from going through with their plans went back before the Supreme Court today, and we asked the attorney representing the Village about the private acquisition and the location. He told us that his clients still have an arguable case, and he explained why: Reporter "What can you tell us about the comments made by the Minister of Foreign Affairs Wilfred Elrington because he say that the 240 lots in question are not part of the Cotton Tree Village?" Andrew Marshalleck - Attorney for Cotton Tree Village Council "He is really between a rock and a hard place because the law says that you must consult with the village council to deal with any lands in the village and there has clearly been absolutely no consultation he can point to then his only other choice is to say is that the land isn't in the village, so it's not surprising."

Only Attorneys from Farmers And Green Tropics Now In Communication
Andrew Marshalleck is also the attorney representing those 30+ farmers from Valley of Peace who are seeking compensation from Green Tropics for the destruction to their crops. As we told you last week, the dispute wasn't making any measurable progress, and last week, the farmers told the representatives from Government and Green Tropics that all future discussion must be held with their attorney. We asked Marshalleck about the current state of affairs, and he said that there is an offer on the table that his clients might not agree to: Hon. Julius Espat, Area Representative - Cayo South "In Green Tropics, we are the negotiation level right now. Attorneys for the farmers and attorneys for the company are sharing information; we are trying to see what is the best deal possible for the farmers in our point of view. That where we are right now."

19 Year-old City Resident Shot
There was a shooting in Belize City on Saturday night. It happened around 7:05 PM on Ben Bow street in the Queen Square area. 19 year old Javan Clare was with two other men transporting some speakers on a bicycle cart when a man came up behind them and opened fire. Clare was hit to the right arm - and the gunman rode off.

New US Ambassador Finally Touches Down In Bze
Carlos Moreno, the new US Ambassador to Belize arrived in the country on Saturday morning at 6:15 AM. He flew in from California via Delta Airlines, and arrived with his wife, Christine. Moreno was greeted on the tarmac by Embassy staff who were waiting for him. Waiting for about a year actually - that's when Moreno was first nominated to the post - but it took 10 months for the US Senate to approve him. But, he's here now and preparing to present his credentials tomorrow. Moreno told LOVE TV on arrival what he intends to do in his time here:... Carlos Moreno, US Ambassador - Designate to Belize "The Government of the United States and the Government of Belize have an outstanding, longstanding relationship. I look forward to improving that relationship in so many ways."

PM To Dominican Republic For SICA
Prime Minister Dean Barrow left the country today. He will attend a Summit of the Central American Integration System, known as SICA. Usually such meetings are attended by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, but the Prime Minister is going because the rotating presidency of SICA will be handed over to Belize. It is the 43rd Summit of SICA Heads of State and Government and it starts on Thursday morning in Puntacana, in the east of the Dominican Republic. Belize will hold the SICA Presidency for six months. The Prime Minister returns next week Monday and Gaspar Vega will be acting Prime Minister.

No Evidence In Murder Trial Against Marlon
27 year-old Marlon Foreman, who was accused of murder for the shooting death of 20 year-old Barney Cunningham Jr., was allowed to go home a free man today after the Prosecution announced that there is no evidence to proceed in the case against him. Viewers may remember that Cunningham Jr. was one of 4 persons who was shot at around 7 p.m. on March 4, 2010. They were all helping a person to move when a lone gunman rode up on a bicycle and fired 15 shots at the group. They all got hit by the gunfire, but Cunningham suffered the worse injures after he got shot in the head. He clung to life for a few hours, but passed away at the Belize Medical Associates. When the case went before the Supreme Court, Crown Counsel Sheneiza Smith told the court that the main prosecution witness cannot be located, so they are forced to enter the case into a "nolle-pros" based on lack of evidence.

Byron Shouldn't Have Been Charged
33 year-old San Pedro Resident, Byron Evans, who as accused of irresponsibly shooting at a dog in public, was allowed to go home a free man after the charge was withdrawn today. As we told you, on June 10, while he was on Tarpon Street in San Pedro, when Evans fired shots after he was attacked by 2 Pit Bulls that belonged to a neighbor of the Minister of Tourism, Hon. Manuel Heredia. He did it in self defense with a licensed firearm, but the gun he was remanded against the objections of his attorney. When he came back today before Magistrate Dale Cayetano, the charge of discharging a firearm in public was withdrawn on instructions from the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl-Lynn Vidal.

Honoring Those Dedicated Public Servants
For the past 9 years, on June 23rd Belize celebrates United Nations Public Service Day. Each year the Ministry of Public Service hosts an awards ceremony and luncheon for hundreds of public servants across the country. It provides an opportunity to recognize and celebrate the diverse contributions public officers make throughout the year. 66 public servants with 25 or more years of experience were awarded today at the ceremony, and 7news was there in the midst of the celebration. Senator Charles Gibson, Minister of Public Service "The 23rd of June each year has been declared as public service day and for the past 9 - 10 years we have been celebrating public service day in Belize. What we try to do first of all is to find out those public officers who have served 25 years and more and the whole idea is to ensure that we recognize and honor and we reward these officers for the hard work, the dedication that they have been doing over that period of time. As you can see this morning, we had what I would consider a very impressive ceremony and now we are having a luncheon and it is really, as I've said before, to honor them and to tell them thank you for the hard work and the dedication that they have done to assist in the development of this country."

Conch Season Closing Next Week
Ceviche and conch soup lovers, you have one more week to part-take in the prized sea-snail. That's because the conch season will be closed on July 1st and it will remain closed until midnight of September 30th. During this time it is illegal to fish conch. The closed season is set to coincide with the period when mature conchs usually mate.

2014 September Celebrations Opening; Ernestine and Destra At Centre Stage
IT'S June, but The 2014 September Celebrations officially will officially open this weekend, June 28, and the National Celebration's Commission intends to make it a grand event. The Commission, working along with concert promoters, Flavaz Entertainment, will bring Trinidadian Soca Queen Destra in for a grand soca concert. On the ticket of performers will be Local soca royalty, including Ernestine Carballo, who's new soca album will also be launched. Today, the promoters stopped by to tell us how the event will work: Tiffarah "Andazi" Panton - PR, Flavaz Entertainment "We are going to have a huge concert, it's going to feature Trinidadians soca queen Destra Garcia and we also have our very own soca queen Ernestine Carballo launching her album that she is releasing this year, its called "Soca Party 2014." It's going to be a soca party all night long. We are also featuring TR Shine and boss lady which are the Belizean soca artists that we are promoting in Belize. Its going to be a great show."

First NEBL Champs Emerge
The first ever National Elite Basketball League season came to an end this weekend with the culmination of a best of three series between the Cayo Western Ballaz and the San Pedro Tigersharks. It started on Friday night in Cayo at the Sacred Heart College auditorium in San Ignacio. The Western Ballaz delighted Cayo fans by taking the series to a Game 3, by winning Game 2 with a score 74-67. The party started after the final whistle. The final game was played 36 hours later, on Sunday morning in San Pedro. The Cayo team were down most of the game, but kept on trying. Still, though they were unable to out hustle the playoff MVP Ashton Edwards who put up 2 of his 22 points. The Tigersharks remained dominant and cruised to an easy victory, 60 - 52. The Belize Basketball Federation President Paul Thompson presented the first prize, a $20,000 cheque to the Tigersharks.

Bze Did In Central American Championships
In other sports news, a delegation of 10 Belizean athletes won 1 Gold 6 Silver and 3 Bronze at the 25th Central American Championship. In the females, Katy Sealy was best with a gold in the Heptathlon while Alexia Neal won silver in the 100 and 400 Hurdles. For the males, Brandon Jones got silver in the 200m, long jump and Triple jump and Kenneth Medwood got silver in the 400 meter Hurdles.

Channel 5

Mother of David White speaks out – says her son was Antichrist’s victim
Lavern “Anti-Christ” Longsworth remains in prison tonight; whether or not she will spend more time in prison or be freed will be decided by the Court of Appeal on Friday. [...]

U.S. State Department blasts G.O.B. for failing to convict trafficking offenders
The U.S. State Department’s Human Trafficking Report 2014 is out, and Belize has been downgraded on the Tier Two watch list. The annual report evaluates countries on their efforts to [...]

Human Trafficking Council says effort has been constant
The report observes other inadequacies in government’s efforts to combat human trafficking, claiming that authorities failed to protect victims of human trafficking while in Belize, and also failed to safely [...]

Cotton Tree Village Council takes G.O.B. to court
This morning, attorneys for the Cotton Tree Village Council and the government of Belize met in Supreme Court for case management. The dispute is over two hundred and fifty-four lots [...]

The Valley of Peace Farmers’ Association versus Green Tropics
Marshalleck is also the attorney on record for the Valley of Peace Farmers’ Association, currently in dispute with agricultural giant Green Tropics. So-called peaceful negotiations broke down more than a [...]

G.O.B. will have to pay ACES for destruction of its property during riots in PG
At around three this afternoon, the Court of Appeal struck out an application by attorneys for the government of Belize. In 2010, young Benjamin and Onelia Rash went missing in [...]

Love triangle turns ugly in the west – 2 cops beat up a taxi operator
Allegations of excessive use of force by police officers are commonplace in the media and reports of brutality are no longer as sensational.  But for one San Ignacio resident who [...]

Criminal and internal investigation launched by San Ignacio Police
This afternoon, we spoke with Inspector Reymundo Reyes who told us that the matter is being investigated both criminally and internally since there are conflicting accounts of what transpired.   [...]

Public Service Minister comments on fired teachers
A total of twelve teachers have been fired as a result of the merger of three high schools in Belize City. It means that if the Ministry of Education has [...]

66 public officers recognized for Public Service Day
Public Service Day is celebrated every year on June twenty-third. This morning, a number of public officers with a quarter of a century of service were honored at an all [...]

Murder trial of Marlon Foreman falls apart due to lack of evidence
Twenty-seven-year-old Marlon Foreman, who was initially accused of murder and three counts of attempted murder, gained his freedom today.  Foreman was behind bars since January 2009 for the shooting death [...]

Changes in the senior command in San Pedro Police
There has been a recent spike in violent crimes and drug trafficking in San Pedro, the most recent resulting in the arrest of a couple on Friday for possession of [...]

Gathering of the Children of the Earth – thousands converge on Indian Creek
A mass congregation of approximately two thousand men, women and children, primarily of Maya descent, converged on the primary school compound in the village of Indian Creek on Sunday for [...]

Barrow assumes presidency of SICA
Belize is assuming the presidency of the Central American Integration System, SICA, for a period of six months, beginning July first.  Prime Minister Dean Barrow left the country for the [...]

The kickoff of the Carnival Season 2014
Early indications are that carnival 2014 will be the biggest ever; so far seventeen bands have registered for the hugely popular event which attracts thousands of spectators along the carnival [...]

San Pedro Tigersharks win NEBL Championship
In the National Elite Basketball League, 2 games were played over the weekend. In game 2 o the finals, Western Ballaz tied the series 1-1 beating Tigersharks 74-67 forcing a [...]


Corozal Resident Charged For Drug Trafficking
This morning 31 year old Adrian Williams was arraigned in the Corozal Magistrates Court for the crime of drug trafficking. Williams pleaded not guilty to the charge and was offered bail of $3000.00 which he met. Williams was detained on Thursday evening by Corozal Police who became suspicious as they saw him riding a female beach cruiser on the Santa Rita Road. Williams was riding contrary to traffic and as a result police set chase after him. When he saw the cops he jumped off the bicycle and ran into Williams Schofield Street. With nowhere to go Williams jumped a fence and threw a white object into some nearby bushes. Quick police respond led to Williams’ apprehension but nothing incriminating was found on him. He however, was taken to the spot where police saw him throw the white object. It was discovered to be a transparent plastic containing white substance suspected to be cocaine.

Corozal Police On The Lookout For Wanted Man
Corozal Police are asking for the public’s assistance in locating a man from the Village of Libertad who is wanted for the crime of dangerous harm. He is no other than Wilbert Carcamo who is accused of attacking 24 year old Andrew Lopez and his wife as they headed to the bus stop located near the Libertad Junction. Lopez, who is from the Village of Xaibe in Corozal, told authorities that on June 22nd at around 7:00pm, he and his wife were walking along the main road in Libertad Village heading towards the bus stop when he was almost hit by a vehicle traveling into the village. In order to avoid being hit, Lopez and his wife ran into some nearby bushes. Lopez shouted at the driver who stopped, reversed and came out of the vehicle with a wheel spanner in hand. Lopez recognized the driver as Wilbert Carcamo of Libertad Village who was accompanied by his sister Reina Carcamo. According to Lopez he told Carcamo to be careful when driving.

Arson Committed In The Village Of August Pine Ridge
Two brothers from the Village of August Pine Ridge in the District of Orange Walk are tonight without a homeless after their dwelling was purposely set on fire. Elder Oliva and Jairo Chi left their home on Friday around 7:00pm. At around 10:30pm they were returning home when they saw a man whom they recognized, riding his bicycle. The individual was coming from the direction of Oliva and Chi’s residence. Both brothers continued on their path and when they arrived home they saw their house roof engulfed in flames and the structure quickly being consumed by the fire. With the assistance from a few villagers, Oliva and Chi managed to extinguish the fire but by that time it dozed off, they had lost everything inside and the structure weakened.

Police Conducted "Clear Water" Operation and Ceased A Good Number Of Drugs
San Pedro Police in close collaboration with Belize City Police conducted an operation called “Clear water’ on Ambergris Caye over the weekend which netted them a good number of drugs and one person was arrested. The first raid was done about 8:30 on Saturday night in the San Pedrito where police found (7) transparent plastic bags of Cannabis weighing 200grams. It was taken to the station and labeled as found property. Minutes later, about 8:35pm, searches were conducted in the same area where police found (2) transparent plastic bags of cannabis weighing 350grams and (50) small transparent plastic bags of cannabis weighing 87.7grams. Both packages were taken to the station and labeled as found property.

Belize Ranks In Highest Rates Of Human Trafficking In The Region
It’s no secret; Belize is among the countries with the highest rates of Human Trafficking in the region. While this paints a negative image for a small country like Belize, the U.S. Government's Department of State has taken aim at the Belize Government for not doing enough to combat human trafficking in its official 2014 Report on Human Trafficking released on Saturday 21 June 2014. The document says Belize has been punished by being elevated to "Tier 2" level, citing continuing irregularities in the Belize government's justice and prosecution system including a failure to prosecute corrupt politicians and high ranking government officials involved in the illegal human trafficking trade: "Trafficking-related complicity by government officials, including allegations of involvement of high-level officials, continued.", says the report summary.

MOW Dump Truck Ran Off The Road On The Yo Creek Road
They say that a picture speaks a thousand words and boy do we have pictures for the following story. The problem is though, we don’t have concrete information because everyone is being tight lipped about what exactly happened on Friday night on the road leading to the Village of Yo Creek in the Orange Walk District. What we have been able to conform though, is that this dump truck, belonging to the Ministry of Works in Orange Walk, was loaded with gravel when its driver ran off the road. Unconfirmed reports indicate that the driver of the truck and his sideman were intoxicated. They were allegedly returning from the small Mexican community of Botes located across the village of Santa Cruz. While the name of the alleged driver and his sideman has been revealed to us, we will withhold them until they have been confirmed.

Rotaract Promotes Basic Education With Primary School Children
Members of the Rotaract Club of Orange Walk hosted a total of 58 children ages 5 to 9 from the San Francisco RC School on Saturday for a morning of reading and fun. Azalia Torres - President of Rotaract told us more about the initiative. Azalia Torres – President, Rotaract OW “We had a little story telling with them, we had a little bit of acting also some arts and craft and we played games with the kids and the kids range from infant one, infant two and standard one of San Francisco school so one of the basic outline that Rotary International that the Rotaract club all around the world is to promote basic education and that is one way we get the students get into reading and writing and to help themselves in school as well, so that is the reason we did this program and we chose the smaller kids should they are just starting out in school as well so for them to get into the habit of reading and so they can continue the different levels as we go on as reading becomes a little bit more advance and it will help them into their education.”

More Drugs removed off the Streets Of O/W
That was not the only drug bust for the week as authorities also managed to confiscate some seven pounds of weed which was discovered in a bus travelling towards Belize City. The discovery was made yesterday at around 2:00pm when North Composite Patrol searched a Tillett Bus which was on Belize Corozal Road (near Atlantic Bank) heading to Belize City. Police entered the bus and informed all passengers to open their bags as random searches would be conducted. During the search, police observed a green Everest nap sack on the front of the bus which no one claimed. Upon opening the bag Police observed seven parcels wrapped in transparent plastic which contained vegetable substance consistent to that of Marijuana. The bus was allowed to continue on its journey and the bag and its content were confiscated. Each of the seven parcels weighed one pound. The drug was labelled as found property.

Man Detained For Drug Trafficking
Authorities in Orange Walk made a significant bust early this morning on a feeder road about 2 miles south of August Pine ridge Village. According to police, based on information received, an operation was launched which netted drugs, firearm and ammunition. Deputy Commanding the Orange Walk formation, Inspector Selvin Tillett, says their intelligence units have been increasing their patrols in these crime prone areas which have resulted in convictions and arrests. Inspector Selvin Tillett – Deputy commanding OW Police “They searched a house, find a male person, when they entered the house they found a 16 gauge shotgun which the person had no license for, 6 16 gauge cartridges, 1 20 gauge cartridge, further search within the lead to a discovery of 386.3 grams of suspected cannabis, the male person, Matilde Ku, was informed of the offense thereafter the police continue searching and in the yard they found a clearing which had about a hundred seedlings of marijuana so he will be charged for cultivation of marijuana and also they found two bags containing suspected marijuana; one weighting four pounds the other weight nine pounds a total of thirteen pounds of marijuana plants and so at this moment this persons has been charged of two counts of drug trafficking and he was charged for kept unlicensed firearm, two counts of kept unlicensed ammunition and one count for cultivation.”

G.R.E.A.T Program Records Another Great Achievement
The main task and responsibility of The Belize Police Department is to fight crime thus keeping Belizeans safe. But despite of the immense efforts by the department, statistics prove that it will take the entire nation to fight crime. And that is where the “G.R.E.A.T” program comes in. The Gang Resistance Education and Training project was launched in 2010 with the aim of teaching youths the importance of being good citizens and how to resist the pressure of entering gangs. The initiative is being incorporated countrywide and today students from three primary schools in the Corozal District found themselves taking part in the last day of the 13 weeks program as they received their certificates. Reporter Victor Castillo has the story. Today certificates were handed over to 25 students from the Church of Christ School in the Corozal District. But they were not graduating from Standard Six, they were being awarded for successfully completing the 13 weeks Gang Resistance Education and Training program introduced by the Police department along with the Ministry of Education and funded in part by the United States Embassy. While “G.R.E.A.T” has been implemented in other parts of the country, it was recently introduced in the Corozal District.

Sea Cucumber Season Is Closed
Fisher folk are reminded by the Fisheries Department that after June 30th, no persons shall take, buy, sell or have in possession, export or attempt to export any sea cucumber. This move is in accordance with Statutory Instrument No. 67 of 2009. Any person found in possession of sea cucumber after this date will be charged and prosecuted in a Court of Law in accordance to the Fisheries Regulations. The cooperation of the Fishing Community and the Public is greatly appreciated to ensure the sustainable use and conservation of this important fishery resource.


Elderly Woman Caught with Guns, Ammo and Marijuana
A sixty year old woman of August Pine Ridge in the Orange Walk district has been charged for several offenses. She is Matilde Ku, housewife of August Pine Ridge. According to Orange Walk Police, on Friday they conducted a search operation of Ku’s the residence which resulted in the discovery of a 16 gauge shotgun, six 16 gauge cartridges, one 20 gauge cartridges, and 386.3 grams of suspected cannabis. Police also searched the yard which led to the discovery of two sacks containing suspected cannabis. Upon weighing it totaled 13 pounds of the leafy substance. The search continued and police observed on a clearing in the yard 10 marijuana seedlings. As a result police arrested and charged 60 year old Matilde Ku with two counts of drug trafficking, one count for kept unlicensed ammunition and one count of cultivation of a controlled drug.

Laborer Charged for Impersonating Collection Agent
Forty-nine year old Curl Gordon, a.k.a. “Doggy”, a laborer of a Pelican Street address, who the police believe is the man who has been going around impersonating a BEL collection agent, was charged with two counts of theft when he appeared today before Magistrate Dale Cayetano. Gordon pled not guilty to the charges. He was offered a bail of three thousand and his case was adjourned until August 15. So far, Gordon has not met bail. An elderly woman reported to the police that on February 21, 2014, Gordon came to her house and stole her purse which contained 70 dollars. Another elderly woman reported to the police that on May 26, 2014, Gordon stole 220 dollars from her.

Cabinet Maker Discharges Firearm in Public
Thirty-three year old Byron Evans, a cabinet maker of San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, who was remanded into custody after he was charged with discharging a firearm within 40 yards of a public road, was freed today when he appeared before Magistrate Dale Cayetano and the charge was withdrawn on instructions from the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl-Lyn Vidal. It was alleged that on June 10, Evans fired his licensed point 38 revolver while he was on Tarpon Street in San Pedro. But investigation revealed that Evans was attacked by two Pit Bulls owned by a neighbor of the Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia, and he fired the shots to prevent himself from being bitten. Evans, who was represented by attorney Oscar Selgado, said that he intends to file a lawsuit.

Foreman Freed of Murder Charge
A nolle prosequi, indicating that the prosecution does not wish to proceed, was entered today for 27 year old Marlon Foreman, who was charged with the murder of Barney Cunningham Jr. Crown Counsel Sheneiza Smith entered the nolle prosequi because the main witness, who is the only eye witness, cannot be located. The incident occurred around 7 p.m. on March 4, 2010. Cunningham and three other persons were on Curl Thompson Street helping somebody to move when a lone gunman rode up on a bicycle and fired 15 shots. All four persons were shot but Cunningham got the worst of it with a bullet that struck him to the left side of his head. He was taken to Belize Medical Associates where he succumbed to his injury the following day. Foreman was represented by attorney Bryan Neal. The nolle prosequi was before Justice John Gonzalez.

Police Officers Under Investigation for Reported Abuse
Thirty nine year old taxi driver, Ernesto Chan says he is a victim of police brutality. Chan says that he was beat up by two police officers attached to the San Ignacio Police Department on Thursday night just a few blocks from his home in the Santiago Juan Layout area. His version of the story is that on Thursday, June 19, whilst driving along Tamarind Lane, a vehicle that Chan says had been tailing him, abruptly cut in front of him and stopped. Chan came to our studios today to tell us what happened next. ERNESTO CHAN “This vehicle overtook me and then he parked middle street so I had to pull on the side so I pull on the side and I was wondering what was happening. The owner of the vehicle is Sergeant Victorin; he came out of the passenger side and he opened my door from my vehicle and he held me from my shirt, pulled me out of my vehicle and he told me, Chan long time I want to (beep) he told me. So when he took me out he punch me on my mouth and he broke my teeth so when he punched me out and he told me that, his scent was strong of alcohol and then the driver of that Suzuki sidekick came out and pushed me down and he is Corporal Rodriguez and push me down and both of them started to beat me up.

Belize To Take Over SICA’s Presidency
Prime Minister Dean Barrow left Belize today to attend the handing over of the SICA Presidency to Belize for the six-month period commencing July 1. The SICA Summit will take place in the Dominican Republic. The Prime Minister is expected to return to the country on Monday, June 30. During his absence, Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Natural Resources and Agriculture Gaspar Vega will act as Prime Minister.

Farmers Say They Will Not Move
An eviction notice has been issued to the thirty plus farmers and their families of Valley of Peace by the attorney for Green Tropics. They are being given until July 15th to move out or legal actions will be taken against them. The farmers say they have been farming on the land for decades now and recently they claimed that aerial spraying done by Green Tropics destroyed tens of thousands of their crops. Their attorney, Andrew Marshalleck and PUP Area Representative for Cayo South, Julius Espat, gave us an update saying that the farmers will not move. ANDREW MARSHALLECK “We’ve received communication from the attorney for Green Tropics and they’ve laid out a proposal. I’ve indicated to them that I don’t think that the proposal would meet the agreement of my clients and I’ve urged them to reconsider it even before I take it. I don’t want to take it there to say no.” JULIUS ESPAT “Attorneys for the farmers and attorneys for the company are sharing information. We are trying to see what the best deal possible for the farmers in our point of view and that is where we are.”

First Court Hearing Held for Cotton Tree Village Council
The Village Council of Cotton Tree Village was back in the courtroom of Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin today. As we have been reporting the Village Council filed a lawsuit against the Government of Belize in reference to 240 pieces of lots being given to Belize City residents by UDP Area Representatives. The first hearing was to be held on June 6 but no Government representative was present. However, today Acting Solicitor General Nigel Hawke presented himself; Attorney for the Village Council, Andrew Marshalleck, told us what happened in court. ANDREW MARSHALLECK “Well we had first hearing of the claim which is case management so directions had been given as to how the matter is to proceed.” HIPOLITO NOVELO “What can you tell us about the comments made by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Wilfred Elrington, because he says that the two hundred forty lots in question are not part of Cotton Tree Village.”

Suspected Robbers Detained by Belmopan Police
Belmopan Police have several persons detained following a burglary in Ontario Village. Correspondent Angelica Cruz has the details in this report.\ ANGELICA CRUZ “On Sunday morning, June 22, Belmopan police visited the business place and residence of John Roberson in Ontario Village. Roberson reported that between the hours of 7pm on Saturday, June 21 and 12:05am on Sunday, June 22, his house was broken into. The thief or thieves gained entry by cutting the mesh wire from the west side window and removed two glass louvers from his bedroom. Stolen were one nine millimeter Smith and Wesson pistol, serial number PJC3124 along with twenty five rounds of nine millimeter ammunition, eight of which were loaded in its magazine. One twelve gauge single action shotgun with five cartridges, one Benjamin branded pellet gun, one Dell laptop computer, one digital Nikon camera and one hundred dollars cash in different denominations, amounting to a total of six thousand dollars. Based on intelligence gathered police have retrieved the twelve gauge shotgun and the Benjamin brand pellet guns about two and a half miles on a remote farm outside of Ontario Village. Police have detained several persons in connection to this burglary.”

Government Loses Court of Appeals Case Against ACES
On August 30, 2010, eleven year old Benjamin Rash and his sister, nine year old Onelia Rash were reported missing. Next month will make four years since their unexplained disappearance. Benjamin and Onelia, both from San Marcos Village, were last seen selling fruits near Cattle Landing Village in Toledo. Search parties were formed and until this day, no one knows what happened to Benjamin and Onelia. Frustrated and angered, the villagers took the matter in their own hands and consulted a resident “physic” which pointed them to the house of Vince and Cherie Rose and their American Crocodile Education Sanctuary, ACES. The angry mob of villagers torched the Rose’s property to the ground. As a result, Vince and Cherie Rose sued to Government of Belize under the Riot Compensation Act and in August 2012, Justice Oswell Legal ruled in favor on the Rose’s and found that GOB is liable. The Government appealed the ruling and today, the Court of Appeal dismissed the appeal. Attorney for the Rose’s, Andrea McSweeney Mckay, told us what happened in court today. ANDREA McSWEANEY McKAY “The main submissions of government were that what happened on that date, the fifth of September twenty ten, was a fire at the Roses’ crocodile sanctuary in Punta Gorda and what government has submitted was that it could not be a riot because either there was less than five persons who actually caused the damage or the persons who did cause the damage were not with the Mayan villagers at the time.


Rape victim speaks out
65 year old businessman Adil Abdulla Bishop, arraigned in court on Thursday, June 19th for a single count of rape, is out on bail. According to police, a 19 year old woman of Belize City reported that on...

School defaced with faeces
St. Joseph R. C. Primary School in Cotton Tree, Cayo, is faced with a serious case of vandalism and it is no ordinary case of vandalism. We must warn you at this point that the images we are about to show are a bit graphic....

Belizean males at risk higher for HIV
The Ministry of Health is reporting, according to an AMANDALA article,  that there were 241 new cases of HIV for the year 2013. Of the total new cases, 145 or 60% were male, while 96 or the other 40% were female. The total for 2013 shows a slight decline...

Non communicable disease top three killers in Belize
While AIDS is a deadly disease, it is not Belize’s number one killer. In fact, it is not even on the top five list. According to the Ministry of Health, the top 5 killers in the country of Belize are heart disease, cancer, diabetes,  unintentional injuries such as traffic...

Senator for the Churches speaks to protestors at Occupy Belmopan
Thursday officially marked the third day of Belize Can’s Occupy Belmopan, an event that will not stop, said Patrick Menzies, President of Belize Can, until the Prime Minister addresses their demands- demands that call for the complete retraction of the gender policy. Patrick Menzies’ continues to operate aside from...

RECONDEV launches incentive to lease holders
If you hold a lease for a property in Belmopan through RECONDEV but you don’t have the habit of making monthly payments toward your lease, now might be a good time to start. In an effort to encourage lease holders to pay towards attaining full title to their property...

Garifuna community organize to buy T.V. Ramos bust
When we last left the bust of Thomas Vincent Ramos, Garifuna hero and organizer of Garifuna Settlement Day, it was sitting outside the home of its creator, Stephen Okeke, who was seeking $40,000 to take it off his...

Court hears appeal of false imprisonment award case
In November of 2011, then-Supreme Court Justice Minnet Hafiz Bertram awarded over $93,000 in general damages and a further $23,000 in costs to three Belize City men who sued for false imprisonment and malicious prosecution after being wrongfully accused of involvement in a murder in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye....

NWC President wins prestigious Fellowship; better equipped to push Gender policy
President of the National Women’s Commission of Belize Ann-Marie Williams joins a prestigious group of scholars from around the world as the first Belizean winner of the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship, named after the former U.S. Vice President and Senator. Ann-Marie Williams is preparing to leave for Washington, D.C.,...

Man accused of shooting at dogs to be released, but when?
A San Pedro man appeared in Belize City Magistrate’s Court charged with discharging a firearm within 40 yards of a public road. But he claims that he was doing it to protect himself from two pitbulls who came after him. The man is 33 year old cabinetmaker Byron Evans...

Patrick JonesPJ

Cotton Tree Village Council wanted consultation on private subdivision
Last week Monday saw the first hearing of the case of the Cotton Tree Village Council and the Minister of Natural Resources concerning a subdivision of 254 lots. The disputed land is situated on the right-hand side of the George Price Highway in COtton Tree village and forms […]

Government of Belize must pay American couple for damage to property
Three years and ten months ago, frantic Maya villagers from San Marcos, Toledo, while attempting to locate missing siblings Benjamin and Onelia Rash, invaded the property of Vincent and Cherie Rose at the American Crocodile Education Sanctuary in Forest Home, Toledo. They set several buildings on fire, killing […]

Green Tropics and Valley of Peace farmers continue negotiations
The dispute between Green Tropics Limited and the farmers’ cooperative in Valley of Peace, Cayo District, has entered the legal realm. It is not yet being settled in court, but after face-to-face talks recently broke down between the two sides, the only communication between them has been through […]

Byron Evans to sue for unlawful imprisonment
The attorney for 33 year old Byron Evans of San Pedro Town, Oscar Selgado, has confirmed that he plans to sue to recover compensation for ten days he spent unlawfully imprisoned in San Pedro and Belize City on a charge that was ultimately withdrawn. Evans was accused of […]

Prosecutors give up on murder charge
Prosecutor Sheiniza Smith filed a motion of nolle prosequi in the Supreme Court of Justice Troadio Gonzalez today in relation to the murder charge against 27 year old Marlon Foreman. Foreman was accused of the shooting death of 20 year old Barney Cunningham which occurred on January 2, […]

False statement to police lands youth in trouble
18 year old Troy Augustus, an unemployed of West Street in Belize City, has admitted that he lied to authorities about a statement he gave them about a week or so ago. Augustus told police that around 6:20 a.m. on June 8 he was in a blue car […]

Fire guts building in August Pine Ridge; arson is suspected
Police in Orange Walk are looking for a man after a fire in August Pine Ridge village gutted a house. The fire on Friday night destroyed the house belonging to brothers Elder Oliva and Jairo Chi. The brothers told police that they left home around 7 pm […]

Belize to take over rotating presidency of SICA
The Honourable the Prime Minister, Mr. Dean Barrow has travelled to Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic to attend a meeting of the Central American Integration System, SICA. According to a brief statement from the PM’s office, during his trip to the Dominican Republic, Mr. Barrow will accept the […]

Burglary reported at Venus Photos and Records in San Ignacio Town
A burglary has been reported at a prominent business establishment in San Ignacio town. The Venus Photos and Records Store on Hudson Street was broken into sometime between the close of business on Saturday night and early on Sunday morning. According to police, the thief or thieves made off with electronic items and assorted jewelry with a combined value of $4,909. Police investigations continue.


Amazingly Beautiful Stormy Day Sailing on the Rum Punch 2
I have a good feeling though about the year coming up – they are kicking it off in July by swimming with the WHALE sharks up by Isla Mujeres, Mexico. AND…to celebrate his birthday, we were headed out on the Rum Punch 2, one of my favorite sailing vessels. (Only in Belize am I able to say stuff like “my favorite sailing vessels”…) And though stormy on and off through the day, it was ABSOLUTELY gorgeous. We met George Eiley our captain at the dock. 10am and though beautiful north and south, there was a squall coming in directly over the reef. Out at the end of the dock. Our gas station here in San Pedro. At least the one for the boats…

It’s Lobster Time Again in Belize!
Yes, all over Belize fishermen are out catching, cooks are preparing and diners are consuming the yummy bugs, as Caribbean Spiny Lobsters are known locally. And to celebrate the opening of the lobster season, several Lobsterfests are held around Belize, providing a rare opportunity to not only gorge on these delicious crustaceans, but participate in great community events as well. Here’s a list of the main fests, followed by some facts about rock lobsters that 80s band the B 52s for some reason left out of their tribute song. Scientifically known as Panulirus argus, the species found in Belizean waters is related to, but different to the Maine lobster many people are familiar with, with the Caribbean cousin lacking the large claws characterising the big lobsters found in northern waters. This species has small spines all over its body and two long, thick spiny antennae. The head and legs are bluish while the body and tail are brown with large white spots. While the spines offer some protection, the lobster is still in huge demand not only by humans, but octopus, eels, sharks, rays, turtles and large fish such as groupers. For their part, lobsters are detritivores as well as omnivores, enjoying small crabs, chiltons, snails and clams. OK, we’re not going to leave you scratching your heads about detritivores. They’re creatures that feed on dead or decaying organisms, thus giving our spiny friends the distinction of being members of the reef’s clean-up crew.

16 Social Media Marketing Tips From the Pros
You can build a loyal, raving community by hosting online events that put the focus on your fans. A fun and effective online event is hosting a “Fan Page Friday”—it’s essentially a virtual networking party where you allow all your fans to share links to their own pages on your page. The event can last as long as 24 hours or more and is a great way to discover new businesses, get more fans, and build tremendous community while increasing your EdgeRank (news feed visibility), too. Many page owners launch a Fan Page Friday event every week; however, I find it much more effective to host one about every four to six weeks, as it has a bigger impact. On my last virtual party, several thousand page owners participated, many of whom picked up as much as a hundred or more new fans as a result.

CARICOM Regional Standards for Public Comments: Labelling of Goods General Principles and Labelling of Prepackaged Goods
The Belize Bureau of Standards wishes to notify the relevant stakeholders and the general public that the final draft standard “Labelling of Goods General Principles” and “Labelling of Prepackaged Goods”, being developed by the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality (CROSQ) is out for public comments. The deadline for submission of comments to the Belize Bureau of Standards is August 22, 2014. Comments can be emailed to To view the Standards for Labelling of Goods General Principles, kindly click on the links below:

It takes 14 to 17 minutes to get to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye on a flight on either Maya Island Air or Tropic Air, the airlines that service transportation to the islands and anywhere else inland Belize. It takes about 45 minutes to one hour and 15 minutes to get there by boat depending on how rough the waters are inside the largest Barrier Reef in the Western hemisphere. There are literally hundreds upon hundreds of things to do there. Here are a few things to do that you may not have thought about. 1. Walk through the alleys. They are neat, sandy and all shoot out from the centre main road to the beaches. If you are a couple, hold each others hands and certainly a cold beer can be well accommodated in the other free hand. Certainly too, ask the locals for the names of the alley/street, some might make you laugh. 2. Walk into small bars. Read the walls. Take pictures of the signs. You never know, there nay be someone you know from the exact City you come from! Actually, what a blast it is when you read – there’s “Tony from Maryland” or “Jessica from New York”, you know them!! Awesome!

Get Paid To Spend Time On A Beautiful Beach
If you like easy-going people…a chilled environment…a warm climate…and an income of up to $5,000 a month, then owning a beach bar might be just the lifestyle career for you. After all, if your customers are predominantly tourists, they are at their most relaxed and happy when they come into your place. And the profits from serving them can be considerable. Can you picture yourself there…at the center of activity? The world strolls into you, ready to share a joke. You serve up a cold beer or a round of cocktails and enjoy the encounter. You have a steady stream of business throughout the day and by sunset the place is filling up. Perhaps you hire a local band to get the atmosphere going for the evening. Maybe you serve food. Maybe not. The choice is yours. Expats are doing this on beaches all over the world.

Butterflies worth spotting in Belize
Butterflies are beautiful creatures and Belize is fortunate to be filled with them. Current estimates say that there are approximately over 700 species found throughout the country. As important pollinators, in the wild, you can commonly see these insects floating effortlessly from one plant to the next sucking sweet nectar from flowers. If you desire a closer look, I recommend you visit one of the several butterfly farms found in Belize. There you will be able to spend a few hours learning about different species and witness their complete life cycle (egg > larva > pupa > adult). Whether you are a kid or adult, these farms are well worth a visit. Trust me.

Uh, A Tropical Storm?
With cats in tow, the journey to Belize begins at 2:30 a.m. on June 15, 2013. Flying from Denver to Fort Worth to Belize City and then hopping on the island jumper to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye became a full day of travel. The kitties fared well considering their "mama" was lugging them into a foreign country subjecting them to the scrutiny of the TSA and Belize Customs pat-downs. Theirs was not so much the culture shock as it was the temperature variations from cool Colorado evenings to a consistent balmy and humid 80 + degrees. I'm certain they were questioning my sanity. George, our taxi driver, introduces us to the layout of the town, the markets to shop at, restaurants to visit and how to navigate from city center to the Villa that is located 2 miles south of San Pedro. Settling into the Villa was a breeze. The kitchen/living area separates the two bedrooms each of which have their own private bath and access to the veranda. The pool is just steps away and the ocean is a short 1 block walk. Ahhh, paradise found. We leisurely stroll over to Ricco's restaurant which overlooks the Caribbean Sea for dinner. Smells of the salty sea air and the melody of music from a wedding party at a nearby resort fill our senses. Our first evening on the island is overflowing with laughter and relief that we are finally here after more than a month of putting the plans together. Breathe.

International Sourcesizz

Wildlife at Belize Resort Pushed by Travolta Could Have Trouble Stayin’ Alive
The A-list actor is promoting a proposed billionaire’s playground in Puerto Azul, complete with a private airport and racetrack, that could endanger the marine habitat. A consortium of environmental organizations has raised an alarm about a proposed megaresort in Belize that received maximum glam cred in May at what the Daily Mail described as the “most exclusive party” at the Cannes International Film Festival. John Travolta and his wife Kelly Preston were the spokespersons for Italian developers of an eye-popping getaway that could pose a threat to the ecologically fragile Lighthouse Reef Atoll, a world-famous coral reef system. The atoll is home to two UNESCO World Heritage sites, including the famed Great Blue Hole, and to more than 500 species of fish, three sea turtle species and one of the world’s largest remaining populations of the endangered West Indian manatee. The resort’s planned private jetport, electric Formula One racetrack and the an outdoor amphitheater dedicated to Andrea Bocelli might generate buzz among glitterati like Heidi Klum and Adrien Brody, both of whom were present at the Cannes event, but it could also taint a country that prides itself as being a magnet for ecotourism. Representatives for Travolta were contacted but provided no comment.

A dog from Belize will soon complete a remarkable journey to his new home and family on Chicago's Northwest Side. John and Ania Garrido already have a dog bed, toys and a tag waiting for the new pet they've named "Pedro." The couple decided to adopt Pedro after finding him hungry and sick in Belize where they were vacationing. The Garridos got Pedro medical treatment, then they had to wait a month after his rabies shot to bring him home. On Tuesday, John will fly to Mexico, where he'll meet volunteers who are driving Pedro up from Belize.

360-degree underwater cameras explore world's most stunning coral reefs
Parts of the world that have rarely -- if ever -- been seen before by human eyes are now open for armchair explorers using any computer or smartphone. Interactive, 360-degree underwater photos of UNESCO World Heritage Marine Sites -- which let viewers navigate through some of the world's most stunning coral reefs and underwater ecosystems -- have been posted online. The result of an international collaboration between the Catlin Seaview Survey and its partners -- which include the Global Change Institute, the Scripps Institute, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration and the International Union for Conservation of Nature -- these images are also available in Google Maps' street view. The goal of the underwater photo survey is not just to reveal the beauty lurking just beneath the waves, but also to educate the public about environmental issues threatening these essential ecosystems and to gather data for scientists tracking the risk. "We hope that the imagery will help...people realize just how beautiful these places are and how important it is to protect these environments that up until now have been out of sight and out of mind," Richard Vevers, the executive director of the Catlin Seaview Survey, told CBS News in an email.

Caribbean HIV/AIDS pioneer Dr. Brendan Bain obtains injunction against dismissal
We previously wrote about the dismissal of Dr. Brendan Bain, a pioneer in anti-HIV/AIDS research and care in the Caribbean, after he submitted an accurate affidavit in a controversial Belize lawsuit, Pioneering University HIV/AIDS researcher sacked over accurate but politically incorrect court testimony. The affidavit documented that gay men are at high risk for HIV/AIDs infection, a seemingly non-controversial position, but which caused gay rights activists to demand his dismissal from a research position at the University of West Indies in Jamaica. Protests in support of Dr. Bain followed, and Dr. Bain recently obtained a court injunction against dismissal, UWI to comply with injunction barring removal of Bain:

Jennifer Lawrence Throws Party to Benefit Little Girl With Leukemia
The Lawrence family must be full of big hearts! Jennifer Lawrence and her brother Ben threw a block party to help out a little girl with her recovery from a tough battle against leukemia. According to, Hadley Mercer is from the actress’ hometown of Louisville, Ky., where she lives with her parents and two older sisters. At just six months old, Hadley was diagnosed with leukemia, and has since undergone chemotherapy treatment and a bone marrow transplant. The good news is that Hadley recently celebrated her first birthday — in remission! Ben helped organize the party through the company he co-owns, Louisville Geek. He revealed there were several goodies set up for auction, including ‘Hunger Games’ and ‘American Hustle’ memorabilia signed by his sister, and a trip to a private island in Belize arranged by Jennifer.

Exercise Tradewinds 2014: Law enforcement training builds relationships between 4th Law Enforcement Battalion, Army National Guard, Royal Canadian Army, Caribbean partner nations
Surrounded by palm trees waving in the breeze and turquoise blue waters, the Marines of Company C, 4th Law Enforcement Battalion, along with the Army National Guard, the Royal Canadian Air Force, the Dominican Armed Forces and 13 Caribbean partner nations, executed phase II of Exercise Tradewinds 2014 at Las Calderas Naval Base, Dominican Republic. The battalion’s primary mission at the exercise was to plan and execute and integration package with the host nation the partner nations, to share ideas on how to better security in the Caribbean region, and to improve U.S. tactics and procedures. “Anytime we get to deploy as a unit and get to interact with partner nations, we get share ideas and see different ways of accomplishing tactics,” 4th LE Bn. commanding officer Lt. Col Sydney Park said. Phase I of Tradewinds 2014 took place in Belize and its focus was based on maritime operations, crisis preparedness and response. Phase II focused on law enforcement and military ground operations, such as tactical site exploitation, range operations, urban tactics, close quarters battle skills, crime scene processing, and vehicle and personnel searches. Participating militaries also received instructional classes on civil affairs and human rights issues.


Video: Belize, 8min.
As part of my Rainforest and Coral Reef Ecology course at Sewanee we took a trip down to the wonderful country of Belize. We spent 5 days in the rainforest doing research at the BFREE research station, and then 5 days out in the barrier reef working with the Smithsonian at Carrie Bow Caye. Overall it was a wonderful, rewarding trip.

Video: Tour the Villa at Cayo Espanto, Belize, 2min.
Located off the coast of Ambergris Caye in Belize, Cayo Espanto is a private island with just seven villas. Staff out number guests two to one. And visitors are free to enjoy whatever they like, be it breakfast in bed, lunch on their villa's private dock, dinner on the beach, or all three.

Video: Buston Lab Field Season 2014, 4min.
Around Belize in 30 days, Here are some of the amazing things we saw along the Belizean Barrier Reef! (All shot on a GoPro Hero 3+)

Video: Rainbow Over Caye Caulker Belize, 15sec.
Rainbow just before a big wind storm.

Video: A Year in Belize, 7min.
The Video story of a year in Belize.

Video: Blue Hole Adventure Day, June 17, 2014, 4min.
Thanks to Guest Diver Darrell Anderson for contributing video. Thanks for choosing Belize as your diving vacation destination.

Video: Taking off in a small plane in Belize, 2min.
Taking off from the Municipal Airport in Belize City

June 23, 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

Wolfe’s Woofer: Cow Herd
Dale doesn't care about a cow herd, or what a cow heard...

Police Report
Theft of Motor Vehicle Glenda Sanchez, a Belizean businesswoman of San Juan Area, San Pedro Town visited the San Pedro Police Station and reported that on Sunday, June 15th at 10PM, she parked her red and black golf cart,with license plate SPC# 1483 and valued at $16,000on Caribena Street and went into an establishment to […]

Doctor Love: Marriage and Relationship
Readers, please send your letters. They can be emails, formal letters or handwritten notes. They are edited solely for grammar and spelling. Also, they are sometimes edited for length. Dear Doctor Love, I have been married for sixteen years. My husband and I have not had relations for four years. It started gradually and after […]

Goooooo Tigersharks!!!
1st ever NEBL Champions!!! Awesome game and win at home!!!

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Garifuna communities in Belize face major crisis
When the Garifuna people first arrived in Belize in 1801 and thereafter from Roatan, Honduras, they went to Belize City first and then settled in Dangriga Town. From there they scattered to other southern parts of the country of Belize in the Districts of Stann Creek and Toledo to establish villages and towns. Today, the Garifuna communities in Belize are Dangriga Town, the largest; Hopkins; Georgetown; Barranco and Punta Gorda Town, the second largest. Another village where Garifuna people lived in the past was Bomba, which is located in the Belize District in the area of Maskall Village. Most of these Garifuna people have completely lost their culture and all they have left is some of their names, like Elijio, Parchue, Ramirez and Castro. Some of them accept their Garifuna culture but others prefer to be described as Creoles.

Summer Night Concert
The Benque Summer Night Concert was Saturday night. The OAS Culture of Peace Band and the Benque Marimba Academy played.

ERI and Panthera Seminar S1E4
The 4th Environmental Research Institute and Panthera seminar is today. There will be 2 topics tomorrow, presented by Carlos Lopez and Carmina Gutierrez.

In Search Of The Most Beautiful Beach In Belize
There are few things that can motivate me to rise before the sun. But on a calm, hazy April morning I arrived at Garbutt Marine’s dock before 6 a.m., as the sun was rising… I was joining a ReefCI day trip to the Sapodilla Cayes, in search of Belize’s most beautiful beach. The other participants had fishing on their minds… Belize boasts over 200 cayes, located mostly within the protection of the Mesoamerican Barrier Reef. (A caye is an island.) The Sapodilla Cayes lie 40 miles east of Punta Gorda town. They form the southernmost group of islands in Belize’s famous Barrier Reef system. Few tourists to Belize make it this far south—or to Punta Gorda. Fewer yet visit the pristine Sapodillas. A World Heritage Site and protected marine reserve, the Sapodilla Cayes are considered by many to be the most beautiful cayes in Belize. The Sapodilla Cayes Marine Reserve encompasses 14 sand and mangrove cayes. And the snorkeling and fishing in the reserve are some of Belize’s finest. The water in the reserve is often spectacularly clear. It supports a wide variety of marine species and fish. It’s possible to encounter the enormous, awe inspiring Whale Sharks if you come at the right time. Manta rays, dolphins and sea turtles and often seen in these cayes, too.

Uncovering Cahal Pech
Read about the excavations at Cahal Pech, courtesy of Cruz Cambranes at the Cayo Tour Guide Association. "For the past few weeks I have observed that excavations had started at the site of Cahal Pech, so today I had a chance to go and do Some investigations of my own. Cahal Pech has been heavily excavated for the past 60 years or so, but since 2011 excavations have unearthed large portions of the site that were covered with soil and trees, particularly the triadic winged temple located on the eastern side B1, B2 and B3. In 2011, we saw the restoration of B1 temple and it’s north wing, B2. In 2012 we then saw the restorations of B3 and the rear of B1, exposing the rear stairway, which was a surprise. In 2013, there were several investigations on plaza A. This project is being done under the BVAR flag. I marked areas that are currently being investigated click HERE FOR MAP."

The Reporter

Private sector considers EU study on a world without CARICOM
Several private sector stakeholders gave their opinions on the European Unions’ proposed study on the opportunity costs of not having the Caribbean Community (CARICOM). While the study is only a proposal to explore the pro’s and con’s of not having CARICOM, many exporters agree that the community’s existence is vital to the longevity and expansion of Belizean exports. Otto Freezen, chief executive officer of BelCar Export and Import Company Limited, explained that 75 percent of his company’s exports are sent to CARICOM countries. He added that the company name stands for Belize-Caribbean. He also said that his company does serve other markets including the United States, Europe and the Middle East. According to Freezen, CARICOM preferential market system, which penalizes purchases from non-Caribbean countries with large tariffs, allows for his company to provide the Caribbean with red kidney beans at a slightly higher price. He underscored that without CARICOM this would be impossible, and would represent an average loss of US$3.5 million per year.

Patrick JonesPJ

New members appointed to the BAA board
A new board of directors for the Belize Airports Authority has been named. According to media reports late last week, the new chairman is attorney at law Mikjail Arguelles, with San Pedro businessman Severo Guerrero taking up the post of vice chairman. Leila Peyrifitte is the secretary of the board while other members are Elodio Aragon, Junior, Nyani August, Tracy Panton Gary Grief and John Waight. The new BAA board comes six months after the Prime Minister asked the previous board to step down following a scandal involving checks for thousands of dollars issued to junior minister Edmond Castro. Castro was also subsequently stripped of the portfolio responsibility for Civil Aviation. That portfolio was assigned to Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia, Junior. The Prime Minister is on record as saying that what the previous BAA board did was not corrupt, describing their action as “distasteful.”

Teachers loose their jobs in High Schools merger
When the new school year starts in September, twelve high school educators will be jobless. That is because the merger of three Belize City High Schools, namely Maud Williams, Sadie Vernon and Excelsior High Schools has rendered the teachers redundant. The teachers who are being let go, five from the Maud Williams High, six from Sadie Vernon High and one from Excelsior High, were informed of their redundancy via letter last week

Michael Silva to stand trial in the Supreme Court for murder
The Supreme Court trial of San Ignacio resident Michael Silva for the crime of murder is set to start in the September session. Silva is accused of the September 23, 2011 murder of Santa Elena town resident Maritza Santos, 19. The preliminary inquiry was held last week during which full disclosure was presented in the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court by the Director of Public Prosecution Cheryl-Lynn Vidal. The full disclosure included various statements recorded by the police, a piece of wood believed to have been used in the murder and a container of herbicide. Media reports at the time of the murder said that when police visited the house that Silva and Santos shared in the Kontiki area of San Ignacio, they found Santos bleeding from a large cut wound to the right side of her forehead and a pillow was over her head.

The June 22nd, 2014 issue of The STAR (Cayo) is online HERE

This Week's Stories:

  • Prowler Gets Five Years:
    The ten month burglary case against Michael “Prowler” Harrison, 52, ended today in a guilty verdict and a five year jail sentence. Harrison, usually shirtless, moves around town on horseback, of late however, he has been walking around town and, when recently asked, informed that his horse had been stolen. He is not a known trouble maker but in this instance he was reportedly caught inflagante delecto (in the act of committing the crime) inside the downstairs storeroom of the KO-OX-HAN-NAH restaurant located on Burns Avenue in San Ignacio Town. The restaurant manager reported to the police that at around 12:30 pm on August 12, 2013 as she was about to enter the downstairs storeroom she heard movements therein. At first she thought that a coworker was in the storeroom.
  • Silva’s Murder Trial Set For September:
    Accused murderer Michael Silva, accompanied by defense attorney, Richard “Dickie” Bradley, appeared today in the San Ignacio Town courtroom of magistrate Narda Morgan for the preliminary inquiry into the September 23, 2011 murder of 19 year old Maritza Santos. On hand in court to marshal the evidence was the Director of Public Prosecutions, Mrs. Cheryl-Lynn Vidal who, apart from statements, tendered in evidence a piece of wood and a bottle containing herbicide. At the conclusion of the process today Bradley is reported to have made no submission. The trail was set for hearing in the September 2014 session of the Supreme Court.
  • A New Era Is Blanketing Belize:
    While a very small minority is desperately seeking to convince the majority of Belizeans that not much is happening in terms of development and construction in Belize, the undisputed evidence is proving otherwise. Those involved in the construction industry are reporting the regular scarcity of construction material especially cement and blocks. Business persons engaged in the cement distribution business and the block making operations are reporting robust sales. Government’s street concreting and the accompanying drain construction projects are consuming a large portion of the increasing inventory of these materials posing extreme difficulties for business persons to keep up with the increasing demand. It is anticipated, that as the unprecedented transformation of streets and roads continues countrywide, the demand for these materials will only increase.
  • Weed Linked to Santa Elena Boy:
    Police say that a 16 year old boy, believed to be the courier for a drug dealer, was caught with a sack containing 18 pounds of weed. The report indicates that at around 8:40 am two policemen on motorcycle were on patrol on Bradley Street in Santa Elena town near the football field when their attention was drawn to a suspicious male person of dark complexion standing near a brown sack in the football field. He was wearing a black shirt and a brown ¾ pants. By the time the police circled and entered the enclosed facility, the person had disappeared. The brown sack was left at the very spot where it was originally seen. When inspected, the sack was found to contain suspected marijuana. Police also came upon a pair of black and grey slippers near the sack of weed.
  • Beware Of That Fire Water:
    Those within and outside the police department awaiting the fall, on a domestic violence charge, of a police constable attached to the San Ignacio precinct, might be disappointed to know that a fall there might not be as the complainant has reportedly indicated that she wishes to proceeded no further with the matter against the policeman. It is reported however, that the police will nevertheless proceed with slapping constable #101 Fermin Choco with a common assault charge as soon as he is located which is proving challenging as he is currently on vacation. Police believe that this latest development should prompt PC Choco to pick up the charge from his base station and face the court where the wife will take the witness stand and inform the court that she desires to proceed no further with the matter.
  • Garifuna Communities In Belize Face Major Crisis With Employment, Lots, Housing, Lands and Education:
    When the Garifuna people first arrived in Belize in 1801 and subsequently thereafter, from Rotan and Honduras, they went to Belize City first and then settled in Dangriga Town. From there they scattered to other southern parts of the country of Belize in the Districts of Stann Creek and Toledo to establish villages and towns. Today, the Garifuna communities in Belize are; Dangriga Town the largest, Hopkins, Georgetown, Barranco and Punta Gorda Town the second largest. Another village where Garifuna people lived in the past was Bomba which is located in the Belize District in the area of Maskall Village. Most of these Garifuna people have completely lost their culture and all they have left is some of their names like; Elijio, Parchue, Ramirez and Castro. Some of them accept their Garifuna culture but others prefer to be described as Creoles.
  • Public Participation Committee Must Interact With The Public:
    Last month, Fortis-BECOL (who owns and operates the dams on the Macal River) had an information table at the San Ignacio Visitor’s Center. The stated purpose was to inform people about the Emergency Preparedness Plan and Early Warning System and “interact with the various presenters”. I spoke to representatives of the Department of Environment and NEMO, and was told “yes” when I asked if I could give comments/suggestions. I made suggestions on how to improve people’s awareness of the warning system and a way to test it. But no one wrote anything down. This led to my giving a written statement of my comments and an invitation to present my ideas at the next meeting of the Public Participation Committee (PPC), pending their approval.
  • Lupus:
    Lupus is an autoimmune disease where the body's immune system becomes hyperactive and attacks normal, healthy tissue. This results in symptoms such as inflammation, swelling, and damage to joints, skin, kidneys, blood, the heart, and lungs. Under normal function, the immune system makes proteins called antibodies in order to protect and fight against antigens such as viruses and bacteria. Lupus makes the immune system unable to differentiate between antigens and healthy tissue. This leads the immune system to direct antibodies against the healthy tissue - not just antigens - causing swelling, pain, and tissue damage. Several different kinds of lupus have been identified, but the type that we refer to simply as lupus is known as systemic lupus erythematosus or SLE. Other types include discoid (cutaneous), drug-induced, and neonatal. Patients with discoid lupus have a version of the disease that is limited to the skin. It is characterized by a rash that appears on the face, neck, and scalp, and it does not affect internal organs. Less than 10% of patients with discoid lupus progress into the systemic form of the disease, but there is no way to predict or prevent the path of the disease.
  • New Sport To Offer New Hope For Youth:
    The disconnect between youth and society at large is a real problem throughout Belize, particularly in densely populated areas where there is little opportunity for employment, and community facilities and services are stretched to breaking point. With unused reserves of energy and a need to be doing something, many young people end up taking the wrong path contributing to high rates of street and gang crime. But a new sport project aims to change all that. * The fastest growing sport in the world today is coming to Belize - Rugby Union is making its first appearance with the Hattieville United Youth Sports Club * Belize is the last in the region to join the worldwide rugby family, as plans revealed to launch the sport nationwide under the Belize Rugby Board
  • Luis Suarez Left England On The Brink Of A World Cup Exit As His Double Strike Gave Uruguay Victory In Sao Paulo:
    Liverpool striker Suarez was making his return after a month out following knee surgery - and it proved to be bad timing for England and manager Roy Hodgson as his brilliance was the difference in a fiercelyfought encounter. Suarez put Uruguay ahead with a first-half header then scored a superb winner six minutes from time after Wayne Rooney's first goal at a World Cup gave England hope of avoiding a second successive Group D loss. But defeat means the odds are now stacked against England escaping this tough group. They will be out unless Italy - who overcame England in Manaus - beat Costa Rica on Friday.
  • Mass Grave Found In Eastern Mexico:
    There is no word on the cause of deaths and officials have warned that the number of corpses could rise. The region has seen fierce fighting between rival drug gangs. Thousands of Central American migrants pass through the state each year, heading to the US. Drug related violence in Mexico has left more than 85,000 people dead since 2007. The grave was found after an anonymous call at a farm near the border with Oaxaca state. Marines are guarding the area as investigators try to recover more bodies, and start the process of identifying those already unearthed. In recent years, Mexican authorities have discovered several mass graves with hundreds of corpses of victims of the drug gangs who fight for control of territories useful to their trade.
  • Transforming The Tower Hill Airstrip In Orange Walk:
    As the unprecedented development continues countrywide, ground was broken today in Orange Walk for the rehabilitation of the Tower Hill Airstrip on the outskirts of Chan Pine Ridge Village. The onsite official ceremony began at 10:00 am with Dylon Jones serving as Master of Ceremony. In delivering the welcome address, UDP Standard Bearer for the Orange Walk East constituency and member of the new Board of Directors of the Belize Airports Authority, Elodio Aragon Jr. informed the gathering of invited guests that the rehabilitation project will transform the facility into an all weather airstrip which cannot presently be utilized in raining conditions. Aragon additionally informed that the project, combined with last week’s ground breaking for the asphalting of the 4.5 miles of the Philip Goldson Highway passing through Orange Walk Town, is a clear testimony of a government at work. He promised to pave the 2 miles of road leading into Chan Pine Ridge village.
  • STAR Humor
  • Your Weekly Horoscope and Lucky Numbers
  • Letters to the Editor
  • Public Notices


Lobster Prepared Countless Ways Rocks at the 2014 San Pedro Lobsterfest Block Party
Last night was the GRAND finale of the week long San Pedro 2014 Lobsterfest. Everyones’ passports were stamped and entered for a FANTASTIC raffle prize – a trip for 2 back to 2015 Lobsterfest complete with flights, hotels, restaurant visits, tours and TONS more. The amazing Paneriffix Steel Pan Group started out the night doing songs from Bob Marley to Rihanna… Here’s my YouTube video. Comes out grainy….but I couldn’t wait 400 hours for the full thing to upload! A WALL of speakers that turned up properly WOULD make ear drums bleed. I shivered for those staying later to see the fantastic artist, Supa G. Famed for his song “4 Men” – sample lyric: White man gotta pay the bills, Spanish man gotta build da house, China man gotta cook the food and…black man gotta lay the pipe.


Video: Dolphins Surfing, 1/2min.
Dave filmed this amazing aerial vision with his quadcopter off Esperance, along south Western Australia's beautiful coastline. Huge pods of bottlenose dolphins cruise the shoreline, surfing, playing and teaching their young how to forage amongst the crystal clear turquoise waters. Such intelligent and playful animals - we have a lot to learn from their lifestyle!!

Video: Paneriffix Belize Steel Pan Band Rocks Rihanna, 1/2min.
2014 San Pedro Belize Lobsterfest kicks off with some fab music

Video: Entrepreneurship MOOC Ceremony,
The University of Belize and the U.S. Embassy partnered up to offer a 6 week entrepreneurship class. Congratulations to all the graduates! "As a wrap up to the online course, 'Beyond Silicon Valley: Growing Entrepreneurship in Transitioning Economies' that the U.S. Embassy facilitated through hosting in person review sessions at the University of Belize, The Embassy hosted a course completion ceremony for participants who successfully completed the course and attended the review sessions. After the short ceremony the Embassy provided a 'pizza' party for the participants."

Video: Belize Guatamala 2014 Apr/May, 15min.
Our short trip to Belize and Guatamala, ATM footage from elsewhere as there are no cameras allowed there anymore.

Video: Dive recap at Southern Cayes, Belize, 4min.
Funny video of swimming with sharks.

Video: Belize Day 3, 5min.
Caves Branch tubing

Video: Guatemala-Honduras-Belize - 2013, 6min.

Video: Crooked Tree Trip 2012, 9min.
This a short movie I put together of the Belize Offroad Club behind Crooked Tree village, Belize.

Video: 2014 Belize Snorkeling Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark-Ray Alley, 5min.
Filmed on a Go Pro3+. Hol Chan Marine Reserve and Shark-Ray Alley Located in the north of Belize and visible from the southeastern shore of Ambergris, the country's largest caye, Hol Chan and Shark-Ray Alley may be Belize's most popular dive and snorkel spots. Crowds can be problematic, but at a mere 30 meters deep and with Finding Nemo-esque underwater views, the positives outweigh the negatives, especially for diving newbies and snorkelers.

Video: Belize Guatemala 2014, 15min.
Enjoy our adventures! Vid credits for ATM portion belong to google search as no cameras are allowed there anymore!

Video: Belize 2013, 7min.
Sailing Belize 2013 - Humphrey.

Video: Belize movie, 17min.

June 22, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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

Letter to the Editor: Response to proposed Emergency Medical Service
I found your recent article on the lack of emergency medical services in San Pedro both interesting and timely. I am retiring to San Pedro in the next several months along with friends of mine, and as fortune would have it we happen to be the trauma and emergency medical team for a hospital in Northern California. Although we are retiring from practice in the United States, we are by no means ready to stop practicing medicine. We would consider it a privilege to offer our services to the community of San Pedro and partner with the Polyclinic to provide around the clock emergency medical services. To this end, we would appreciate the community’s support in obtaining the appropriate medical licensing and work visas. Any parties interested in supporting our endeavors should feel free to contact me at I would appreciate it if you could include this email in your newspaper as a response to the aforementioned article. Thank you.

Sea Cucumber Season to Close
The Belize Fisheries Department hereby informs all fisheries and the General Public that in accordance with Statutory Instrument No. 67 of 2009, Senator, the Honorable Lisel Alamilla – Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development – declares that no person shall take, buy, sell or have in possession, export or attempt to export any sea cucumber after June 30th, 2014. Any person found in possession of sea cucumber after this date will be charged and prosecuted in a Court of Law in accordance to the Fisheries Regulations. The cooperation of the Fishing Community and the Public is greatly appreciated to ensure the sustainable use and conservation of this important fishery resource.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

San Pedro Regatta 2014
Saturday, July 5at 10:00am Boca del Rio Park, San Pedro Town

Cave Garden Grand Reopening
The Cave Garden is having their grand reopening next Friday. Benque's #1 spot will be celebrating happy hour all night.

Duck Run Receives Solar Lights
The village of Duck Run had solar lights donated by the Rotary Club of Copperas Cove. They now have a safe, renewable source of light. Thanks, Rotary! "Solar lights for the Village of Duck Run were provided by the Rotary Club of Copperas Cove, Texas. Duck Run is located Northeast of San Ignacio in the Cayo District of Belize. These families were living without access to a safe source of light. Children were studying by kerosene lamps and candles. Kerosene lamps cause deaths and disfigurement due to burns. It also emits toxic fumes. The Village of Duck Run is now lit by safe solar lights provided by the Rotary Club of Copperas Cove. The Rotary Club of San Ignacio, Belize provided transpertation and assisted in the distribution. Thank you to the Ministry of Rural Development for their assistance in making this day possible."

Western Ballaz Trounce Tiger Sharks
The Western Ballaz defeated the Tiger Sharks 74-67 Friday night in the 2nd of the 3 playoff games. They will be playing in San Pedro today at 9:30 in the last playoff game. If you're interested in going to cheer them to victory, check out their page for more information. Pictures on fb.

Ozzy's Humor Therapy
Ozzy's Humor Festival is coming to Cayo. Today, it will be at Mae Gordon Park in Belmopan. Monday, it'll be here in Cayo. While they haven't given the venue, it'll probably be at the Cayo Welcome Center. Ozzy and his friends are touring all over Belize to bring laughs to everyone. They were at BTL Park Friday night. Thanks, Ozzy!

University of Belize Graduation
Congratulations to all the University of Belize graduates! In related news, UB has their latest issue of their e-bulletin out.

CNWA Safety Day
The Cayo Neigborhood Watch Association had their Cayo Safety Day last weekend, and there was a huge turnout for the fun, games, and displays. They had a karate exposition too, performed by the Kazoku Shotokan Dojyo. Thanks, CNWA!

The Reporter

Isabel Bennett – the long road to recovery
The Webster’s Dictionary defines strength, with reference to character, as “the ability to resist being moved or broken by a force” or “the quality that allows someone to deal with problems in a determined and effective way.” According to this definition, strength is only visible […]

The Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) program

The Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) program held graduation this week for 120 boys and girls from the Bishop O.P. Martin Roman Catholic Primary School in San Ignacio Town. The students underwent 13 weeks of training on how to say no to gangs and how to protect themselves. It […]

Brazilians evacuate area near stadium following sinkhole collapse
Brazilian authorities have evacuated residents from a stadium near one of Brazil’s World Cup stadiums following the collapse of a huge sinkhole. Partially-collapsed homes on the edge of the crater in Natal still filled with furniture and household appliances stood dangerously close to collapsing. […]

Cane farmers to meet season quota despite late start
Despite the two-month delay for the start for the 2013-2014 sugar cane crops, the cane industry is preparing to either meet or exceed its 1.2 million ton quota. According to John Gillett, factory manager for Belize Sugar Industries Limited, the factory milled over 1,068,000 tons […]

Patrick JonesPJ

BEL announces multi-million dollar profit for 2013
The state-owned Belize Electricity Limited this week reported a net profit of 18.7 million dollars for last year. The announcement of the multi-million dollar profit was made during BEL’s annual general meeting which was held on Thursday night in Belize City. Lower costs of financing and the lower cost of power are credited with contributing to the 2013 profits for BEL. It is a major turn around, after BEL posted a $16 million loss the previous year. Senior Financial manager Betty Tam told Channel 7 News on Friday that BEL saw a 5% increase in sales, and when combined with a decrease in the cost of power by 8% helped the company to turn the 18 million dollar profit. According to Channel 7, BEL announced at its annual general meeting that $5.6 million will be paid out in dividends to shareholders.

Conservation group warns: logging concessions doing more harm than good
The Steadfast Tourism and Conservation Association has issued a press release expressing concerns about the impact of logging operations on the Billy Barquediar National Park. The release wasted no time in saying that “logging concessions in the upper mountain catchment areas of the Manatee Forest Reserve and the Mullins River Basin have resulted in removal of critical vegetation that now pose a major threat to the very important watersheds of North Stann Creek and Mullins River.” The Association goes on to explain that the impact will be negative for areas along the Manatee Road, commonly referred to as the “Coastal Road”, Dangriga Town, Mullins River Village, and eventually the Barrier Reef. Chairman of the Steadfast Tourism and Conservation Association Anthony Hislop, told Channel 7 News on Friday that “logs have been removed directly from within the creek head which the national integrated water resource have with government grounds.”

US State Department says Belize is not doing enough to stop trafficking in persons
The government of the United States has again put Belize on its Tier 2 Watch List, claiming that the government of Prime Minister Dean Barrow is not complying with the minimum standards of the Trafficking Victims Protection Acts. Belize is one of 7 regional nations singled out for inclusion on the Watch List. The 2014 Trafficking in Persons report which was released in Washington D.C. on Friday notes that the countries of the Caribbean are making great strides towards complying with the standard set out by the Trafficking Victims Protection Acts but also points out that the number of victims of severe forms of trafficking on the list is “very significant or is significantly increasing.” The countries of the region that appear on the Tier 2 Watch List are Antigua and Barbuda, Belize, Guyana, Haiti, Jamaica, St. Vincent and the Grenadines and Suriname. The United States’ State Department said on the Tier 2 Watch List, there is also a failure to provide evidence of increasing efforts to combat severe forms of trafficking in persons from the previous year in these countries.


Whirlwind Belize City shopping tour
Did a whirlwind Belize City shopping tour Wednesday and by whirlwind I seriously mean it mean it. 11 places in the span of about 5h – we really got around. In addition to 4 cabs we still got our exercise in for the day, my movement tracker shows 3.97 miles walked. I was planning to take the 8:00:am flight and due to work and the 9:00am being full, I ended up on the 10 am Tropic Air.That mean the race would be very close, Mary and Michael took the 8:30 am boat and our plan was to meet at Brodie’s between 10:00am and 10:30 – they won by a couple of minutes. My cab ride from Municipal airport to Brodies $10 bzd and I got his card for later use. Belize travel tip – When doing mainland shopping trips it can be very hot and staying hydrated is important. Drink extra water on the way to stops where you know you will have a bathroom option.

Follow the Signs to The New Rum+Bean Cafe & Mahogany Bay Village, South Ambergris Caye
WHERE? you may ask and as of early this morning, so would I. Mahogany Bay Village is a relatively new, sometimes controversial area just south of me at about Mile 2 South Ambergris Caye. At one time, when the land was being filled it was dubbed “Sugar Caye” but that was later changed and in the past year, the area has seem some HEAVY construction. I’ve only really seen it from the air. The large front gate to the area, yes but inside, I had yet to take a peek. So earlier this week when lots of signs went up south of town like this… And then I heard the new cafe was in this development, I knew I needed to go take a look. And this morning I did. Here is what I was surprised to find. I walked past the gorgeous Victoria House entrance… And then on the right hand side is this ELABORATE gate right below the BWS water tower. The Rum+Bean sign is fluttering in the wind and the gates are finally open! The first two fully finished and opened buildings. On the right is the Mahogany Bay village offices and of the left, the gorgeous Rum+Bean Cafe.

“Go Now” to San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.
I’m out on the veranda. Yes the western (lagoon) facing one. It’s just past 01.00 hours. I’ve got no mug of black coffee with me – come on , it would keep me awake for hours- but I do have the iPad with me. Regular readers are now starting to think thworld has turned upside down. I mean he (that’s me) always gets up early. And that’s the time of the day that he writes about. Why’s he writing his blog at 1 pm (remember you’re thinking this, not me. If it had been me I’d have said 01.00 hours). Well I’m writing it now because I’ve got just back from attending the 2014 San Pedro Lobsterfest Block Party and, because I had a particularly good time and a fair amount to drink, I still feel wide awake. So I thought why not knock out an edition now. Now if I were erudite – and I’m not- and had the energy – which I don’t – I’d give a couple of paragraphs to how Lobstersfest started in 2008 (or was it 2007 ?) . But I won’t. I mean its late and I need to go to bed. If not how can I be expected to be out here ( on the western veranda) at 04.00 hours (it’s me now so it’s the 24 hour clock).

International Sourcesizz

Diving Sapodilla Cayes Marine Reserve
Polly Alford was born in Kent, Southeast England. “I left when I was sixteen. I took a secretarial course and became a high-powered secretary for a private hotel in the West End of London,” she related. She was relaxed, having a drink in the garden of the Colonial Inn in Punta Gorda, Belize. The setting is far removed from this 47-year old’s former life selling time-shares in Portugal, motor cars in UK and her night-school education in marketing. She moved to Punta Gorda a southern city on the Gulf of Honduras. It became the base for Reef CI and Blue Reef Adventures. Polly now leases Tom Owen’s Caye from its American owners. It is the southern-most key or ‘caye’ in the Sapodilla Cayes Marine Reserve. Tom Owen’s Caye is 36 miles from Punta Gorda. The trip to the island requires an almost 2-hour ride in an open launch. The reserve covers 174 square miles. It runs in a fish hook shape with Tom Owen’s Caye at the southernmost end.


Video: Art in the Park | Corozal, Belize, 4min.

Video: Snorkel and Snuba in Roatan and Belize, 6min.
Snorkel in Roatan & Belize, April, 2014.

Video: Scuba Diving at ReefCI Belize - Suyog Deshpande, 5min.
Video from my volunteer vacations with ReefCI, Belize. Shot at the Tom Owen's Caye and Honeymoon North Reef.

Video: Maya Ceremony flute presentation in San Pedro, Belize, 1min.
San Pedro, Belize did a Blessing Ceremony at the Marco Gonzalez site.

Video: Belize 2014, 10min.
Documentary-like video for my recent mission trip to Belize.

June 21, 2014


Click for our Daily Tropical Weather Report.

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

Puerto Azul is ‘merely a concept’
The news of the potential mega-resort on Sandbore Caye and Northern Two Caye, located within the Lighthouse Reef Atoll has received much attention across Belize and beyond. Environmentalists and the wider public were outraged after pictures showing two senior Cabinet Ministers at the unveiling of the concept at the 67th Annual Cannes Film Festival in France. The Prime Minister of Belize, Dean Barrow, at his quarterly press conference, has officially stated that Puerto Azul is not a project, but merely a concept being discussed by investors. Investors have also discussed the proposed development with the media, to clarify what their investment interest is for Belize. Environmentalists claim that the proposed development could be devastating to the environment, since it would sit on an Atoll that is part of Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System (a UNESCO World Heritage Site) and is home to the Great Blue Hole, a significant site for the tourism industry. But on Wednesday June 11th, PM Barrow stated that the project is simply in discussion. “The government has engaged in discussion with the potential developers on the idea, but it has not gone further than that,” said PM Barrow. He added that the initial plan was far too elaborate for the magnitude of the project, and the government had asked for the project to be downscaled. The initial proposal was for Puerto Azul to include shopping centers, restaurants and bars, a golf club house, spa, airstrip, marina, churches, business centers, botanical garden, health care center, not to mention accommodations for approximately 1,000 guests and 2,000 employees. “No kind of approval will be given, unless all the process required by law, public policy and governance has been met. In addition the proposal must be feasible before it is even sent to Cabinet for consideration,” said PM Barrow.

Costa Maya Festival presents Miss Panama!
Another beauty joins the list of candidates looking to take home the title of Reina de la Costa Maya 2014-15. Karol Salinas of Panama joins Ana Graciela of El Salvador and Maria Jose of Honduras in the lineup to take the stage on August 7, 2014. Karol is 19 years old, and stands at 5’7”. She’s a gorgeous brunette who enjoys traveling, listening to music, reading and exercise. She is a second-year student majoring in Marketing/ Advertising and Sales Management, and is a professional model signed on to Physical Modelos since 2012. She’s participated in various national and international catwalks, and has landed covers of several publications including two editorials of Revista Mia and The Magazine, Woman Magazine and Couture Magazine.

90 days later, police houses still not relocated as promised by the SPTC
One of the major challenges faced by the public officers at the San Pedro Police Department is housing. For years, they have been forced to live in sub-standard conditions inside severely dilapidated structures. In March, the San Pedro Business Association (SPBA) decided to hand over two wooden structures to the police, which the San Pedro Town Council then promised to move on the weekend of March 21st and 22nd. 90 days after promising to move the homes, the SPTC still has not done so. The houses, once utilized by the Belize National Coast Guard, have been sitting in a private yard in the San Pablo Area. SPBA founding member Elito Arceo, along with a group of community members, had planned to assist in the relocation of the homes in March. The group had committed to renovate the buildings before handing them over to the police as living quarters. However, the SPTC stepped in and promised to do so that same weekend. Since then, there have been all sorts of setbacks, and 90 days later, the two structures still remain empty and un-moved.

Puerto Cortez and San Pedro football teams to square off on Saturday
A football delegation from Puerto Cortez, Honduras is on Ambergris Caye by invitation of the San Pedro Lobster Festival Committee. The visit from the southern neighbors is part of the celebration for the Lobster Fest being planned for Saturday June 21st on the island. As part of the event, a veteran’s football match will be played at the Ambergris Stadium on Saturday afternoon. President of the Honduran Veteran League Welner Maldonado said that this is the third occasion that residents of both San Pedro Town and Puerto Cortez are involved in football exchange competitions. “We are happy to be amongst our Belizean brothers and sisters. Over the past two years, we have been building ties between the two communities. We are here to play a football match, but most importantly to strengthen the bridge of friendship and collaboration between the two municipalities. We know that San Pedro Town has a big Honduran community, and over the past years, Belize has been a home to them and so we have love and respect for Belize. We consider the people of this country a part of us and so we invite the residents to come and enjoy a good football match,” said Maldonado.

San Pedro’s patron saint celebration has begun
Religious activities in connection with the island’s Patron, Saint Peter (San Pedro), commenced on the morning of Friday June 20th with “La Bajada” followed by “El Alba.” The activities are part of the annual catholic celebration that the San Pedro Roman Catholic Church, the San Pedro Town Council and the San Pedro House of Culture put together to honor the fishermen’s saint. The predominantly Mestizo community adopted Saint Peter as the Patron of the island and named the municipality San Pedro since at the time, the island was a fishing community. In the Bible, Peter is known a fisherman, and as such is referred to as the Saint of Fishermen, something that residents of Ambergris Caye celebrate with a combination of religious, cultural and festive activities.

Good lunch and cool breezes at San Pedro’s “Hot Spot!
Located on the grounds of Exotic Caye Resort, Hot Spot is located just south of town, on an upper deck overlooking the beach. And that is exactly where my amiga Janel and I found our selves on the fine Saturday morning. With the choice of indoor or patio seating, there’s no way we would waste a beautiful day, so of course we grabbed the seats outside. The atmosphere was breezy and cool as we talked and sipped on our rum punch. From our vantage point we could see visitors relaxing on the beach or heading out on their tours for the day; a little further ahead, the cresting reef drew a white line along the horizon.

Belize Fashion Week
Belize Fashion Week Team confirms this year’s BFW2014 which will be held in San Pedro Town, Ambergris Caye, Belize from October 9th - 12th 2014. International Designers will be announced at a later date. See below schedule of activities: October 9th 2014 – Opening/Social Event October 10th 2014 – Runway Shows (Local & International Designers) October 11th 2014 – Runway Shows (Local & International Designers) October 12th 2014 – FASHION FEST Locations and time schedules will be announced later. For more information please contact 629-3078/610-1880.

Ambergris Today

Miss Panama Contestant Announced for Costa Maya Festival
Karol Salinas has been chosen to represent her country as Miss Panama Costa Maya at the Reina de la Costa Maya Pageant that will be taking place at the International Costa Maya Festival in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize on Thursday, August 7, 2014. At 19 years of age and standing at 5’ 7” tall, Karol Salinas is a marketing & sales management student. She is a brunette and has dark brown eyes. Her hobbies include listening to music, exercising, reading and travelling. Karol is a top model in Panama and has participated in both national and international modeling events. She represented Panama at the Miss Model of the World 2013, in Shenzhen, China in November 2013 where she placed in the top 25 in the pageant.

Bella Italia Restaurant Is Doing Something Right
In the short amount of time that we sat waiting for our food at Bella Italia Restaurant, I saw quite a few boxes of pizza come out of the kitchen ready for delivery. And still, in no time, our food was out – two pizzas, lasagna and shrimp pasta. The cook is a fast one at Bella Italia and people are loving this aspect of the restaurant; and their food is great too! Bella Italia offers great new options for pizza lovers in San Pedro, having different pizza styles that are delicious, plus they come out faster than most pizza places in town. Browsing through Bella Italia’s menu you find pizza options like Salsiccia Pizza (tomato, mozzarella & Italian sausage); Carbonara Pizza (mozzarella, parmesan, bacon & eggs); Esotica Pizza (ham, mozzarella, tomato & pineapple) and Margherita Pizza (tomato, mozzarella & oregano), plus the popular favorites like Meat Lovers, Supreme, Shrimp, Veggie and Pepperoni.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Ribbon cutting ceremony today, Friday, June 20 at 9 am. just some early morning cleaning up .. and presto.. just in time for the rains to start..

Hunting for lobster
With our friend Eric Henkis from San Pedro, Ambergris Caye. Eat lobster until your belly hurts....Happy Lobster season to all our friends and visitors from abroad!!!

Sea cucumber season ends June 30th
The public is informed that no person shall take, buy, sell or have in possession, export or attempt to export any sea cucumber after June 30th, 2014. Any person found in possession of sea cucumbers after this date will be charged and prosecuted in a Court of Law in accordance to the Fisheries Regulations.

CNWA Safety Day
The Cayo Neigborhood Watch Association had their Cayo Safety Day last weekend, and there was a huge turnout for the fun, games, and displays. They had a karate exposition too, performed by the Kazoku Shotokan Dojyo. Thanks, CNWA!

Belmopan Clean Up Campaign
The Belmopan City Council is doing a Clean Up Campaign today. They are asking all residents to clean trash and debris from their yards, and to help load the debris into the garbage truck as it passes. They are proactively seeking to eliminate mosquito borne diseases with this campaign. Great idea!

Belmopan Primary Graduations
Congratulations to all the graduates of United Evergreen and Belize Christian Academy!  Diana Shaw, the founder of the Child Development Foundation, was the guest speaker at the BCA graduation, and her speech was impressive and inspiring to everyone in attendance.  It was superb!  On to high school, and beyond. Thanks, Belmopan City Online, for the great pictures.

Channel 7

Rape Victim Says Adil Abdullah Lied
Last night, we told you about the arraignment of 65 year-old Adil Abdullah Bishop, who has been accused by a 19 year-old woman of rape. Bishop is a well-known bail bondsman at the Magistrate's Court, and he's also a landlord who owns various apartments. In this case, the 19 year-old told police that he deceived her saying that he had apartments at Mile 8 on the Western Highway that he could rent her. She claims that when she got into his vehicle one week ago, he took her to a secluded area near the Homeland Memorial Park, and with his gun in plain sight as a threat, he raped her. Yesterday, Bishop was arraigned in Magistrate's Court for that Charge, and after he was granted bail, he selected only the freelance journalists who work the courts to grant an interview. His version of the story was that the 19 year-old had a crush on him for 6 months. He also claimed that she reported him to police only after she tried and failed at blackmailing him. Today, the 19 year-old woman granted us an interview in which she responded to his allegations, but for context, we start first by airing his comments from last night: Adil Abdullah Bishop

Laverne "Antichrist's" Lawyer Wants Her Free On Time Served
Laverne "Anti Christ" Longsworth set her common law husband David White on fire in July of 2010. He died 18 days later from those severe burns. She's since served three and a half years in jail - but now she faces a very real chance of getting a reduced sentence. That's because her attorney Godfrey Smith got a British forensic psychiatrist to assess her. The psychiatrist concluded that Longsworth was suffering from battered women's syndrome - which diminished her responsibility for her actions. That finding was the centerpiece for an argument in favor of a reduced sentence. Longsworth was expected to get that reduced sentenced today but Smith and his juniour counsel, Leslie Mendez had another plan: they believed they could establish to the court that she deserved to get off with time served. 7News was at the Court of Appeal:..

Alleged Immigration Queenpin Gets Bail
Marleny Castellanos, the alleged queen pin of an immigration fraud ring is out of bail tonight with her husband, Alfredo Marcos. Castellanos is accused of arranging documents for herself, her husband and 17 other people, and she is facing 40 different immigration charges. 2 weeks ago, their attorney, Kevin Arthurs, applied to Justice Troadio Gonzalez for Supreme Court bail on the grounds that all the charges that have been brought against them are misdemeanors with fines if they are found guilty. Additionally, Arthurs submitted that his clients are not flight risks. Crown Counsel Leroy Banner objected at that time that they could be flight risks, and that more charges against them were imminent. Today, Justice Gonzalez ruled that both of them should be granted bail because other than the charges before the court, which are only allegations at this time, there was no other evidence which suggested that they weren't Belizeans. With that, he granted Castellanos bail of $20,000, and Marcos a bail of $10,000. The conditions were that they needed to surrender all travel documents, and that they report to the Queen Street Police Station every Friday until her cases are completed.

San Pedro Land Dispute Simmers, Legal Daggers Drawn
The land dispute between Tropic Air and Brett Feinstein, which we told you about last night, is still simmering - and multiple attorneys are engaged on all sides to initiate suits and counter-suits. Last week Thursday Eamon Courtenay filed suit against Tropic Air on behalf of Brett Feinstein - and on Friday Agnes Segura filed for judicial review against the Ministry of Natural Resources on behalf of Tropic Air. Right now, Tropic has the most to lose -its multi-million dollar facility has been put on hold, and the company has been served with a cease and desist order by the Central Building Authority . More than that, Natural resources Minister Gaspar Vega says their lease has been cancelled - a lease which he himself signed off on in December of 2008. And, contrary to what Vega said, the lease also originated during the UDP's term in May of 2008. Tropic says it hasn't gotten any notice of a cancellation - and it has done nothing to have its lease cancelled since it is fully paid up and is improving the property. So that's why the company is seeking judicial review.

Government Challenges Award To George Street Figures
In November of 2011, it made major news when Shelton Pinky Tillett, Micah Thompson and Charles Woodeye successfully sued the government of Belize for wrongful imprisonment. Tillett and Thompson were considered senior George Street personalities, and Woodeye was their associate. They were charged for the San Pedro murder of John Paul Saldivar - against the advice of the DPP - and after 11 months on remand they were released with no case to answer. They sued the government for wrongful imprisonment - and won. Each was awarded $25,000 dollars, plus Woodeye was compensated for loss of wages. But, both he and Tillett were murdered, they died without ever seeing the money. That's because the Attorney General's office appealed the case. IT went before the Court of Appeal this morning where the Panel led by President Manuel Sosa didn't seem very impressed by the acting Solicitor General Nigel Hawke's arguments that no payment should be made. In fact, they ended up hearing from Agnes Segura who represented the three men on why the award should be increased.

Steadfast Tourism and Conservation Association Complains About Loggers
The Steadfast Tourism and Conservation Association - known as STACA - in Southern Belize says it has been forced to go public due to unregulated logging activity in protected area. They logging concessionaires in the upper mountain catchment areas of the Manatee Forest Reserve and the Mullins River Basin have removed critical vegetation - which now poses a major threat to the watersheds of North Stann Creek and Mullins River. The President of STACA - explained it to us over the phone today:.. Anthony Hislop, Chairman - STACA "Last week I found out through my rangers, they reported to me on Thursday night that logs have been removed directly from within the creek head which the national integrated water resource act with _____ grounds. That pit at risk the water supplied at ____ for the villages of Steadfast at Alta Vista. These people get their potable water directly from the Billy Bakadeer National Park and this is something they have been trying to prevent from before. My opinion of this is greed - is somewhere along the line."

BEL Makes Major Comeback with $18.7 M Profit
Last night, BEL held its Annual General Meeting to report to their shareholders about financial year which ended on December 31, 2013. The important news coming out of the meeting is that the company turned a net profit of 18.7 million dollars - the best performance in years and a major rebound from last year's loss of 16 million dollars. The turnaround is due mostly to lower cost of financing, and lower cost of power. The media was locked out of the AGM, so today, we sat down with one of the Senior Managers of the company to understand what this positive developments mean for you, the consumer. Here's what she told us: Daniel Ortiz "The company made a net earnings of 18.7 million dollars which is the best in 5 years. Tell us what accounted for this profit?" Betty Tam - Senior Mngr. Finance & HR, BEL "Basically, first of all we had increase in rates which we got because we had to compensate for the high cost of power in 2012. We also had a 5% increase in sales and then besides that cost of power was basically in our favor in 2013 because we had better rains and that decrease cost of power by 8%."

Belize Hotel Assoc Names New President
And while BEL's AGM was last night, the Belize Hotel Association held theirs today at the Biltmore Plaza. It was the first time that the Hoteliers got an opportunity to meet the new Director of the Belize Tourism Board, and 7News stopped by to speak with the executive. The outgoing president, and the newly elected president told us that they are pleased with Karen Bevans' message of closer collaboration with them as industry stakeholders: Douglas Thompson - Outoing President, BHA "Today at the AGM we had elections. I did not run for re-election, I've been in the position for 5 years - that more than enough time in one spot. We have very able and younger folks that can do the job and so I am moving out to make room for the new blood."

New BTB Director Speaks About Synergy
And, while we got the opportunity, we spoke with the New Director of Tourism, Karen Bevans. She's been holding the post for a little over 2 months now, after she replaced Laura Esquivel-Frampton, who made a less than orderly exit after her senior management pulled a palace coup on her and made a no-confidence vote to Tourism Minister, Manuel Heredia Jr. Since then, the transition seems to have been seamless, but there is still that issue of that deficit of several million dollars in the last fiscal year. That affects the BTB going forward and today, we asked Bevans about the financial position of the BTB, and about her impression as the new director of this major industry: Karen Bevans - Director, BTB "The industry is very nice, very exciting to work in. It is a change for me, but I do think that there is a lot to do. We have made great strides in the past. We have come a long way, but we are not where we want to be and we recognize that, so recognizing that we have a lot to do and we need to plan the way forward together I think is a good start. We discuss quite a few initiatives here this morning and the intention now is to implement our action plan. Let's do it together and we will go much farther than we are today."

Okeke's Latest Come-Up Plan for TV Ramos Bust
Last month, we told you how Stephen Okeke put his latest sculpture of Thomas Vincent Ramos up for sale after his funders backed out of the deal to pay for it. TV Ramos, of course, is a cultural icon and founder of Garifuna Settlement Day in Belize.Okeke claims that he was contracted by members of the Garifuna Community to sculpt the monument to be placed in Dangriga Town, but when he was finished with it, he suddenly had no one to sell it to. So, in protest, he put out in front of his business place on the Northern Highway with a for sale sign. He was willing to take a lesser payment just so that he could get rid of it, but he's now gotten a few allies from the Garifuna Community to try and come up with the full price. How much is that asking price? Well, he says that it's worth $40,000, and Bert Ramos, Mitias Mariano, and Walter Gillett want to buy it from him. We've featured Bert Ramos on our newscast, and as a descendant of TV Ramos he told the media today in a press conference that he will get try to get the money to buy it. He and the other men say that they will fund raise:

Greater Ladyville
For the past 2 weeks, we've featured the primary school graduates from the police department's Gang Resistance Education and Training Program. GREAT - as it is better known - is one of the department's attempts at intervention into the lives of the children before gang culture swallows them up. Today, Ladyville Police Station, which has jurisdiction over all the rural areas in the Belize River Valley, celebrated the graduation of 40 primary schoolers from the Sinai 7th Day Adventist School in Ladyville. 7News stopped by and spoke with the Rural Executive Officer about their very first batch of graduates: ASP Chris Noble - Rural Executive Officer "Our officers have been trained in GREAT. It's a program 14 years in the making, but it is the first time that it is actually happening in rural Belize. The entire rural Belize has never seen it. It is spearheaded by a constable WPC Carla Smith and she after doing training has selected this school. I hope that it is the first of many because we are encouraging everybody else to come onboard with us and we want to go into more schools, we want to look at more education. We want to look at more kids because we don't want anybody else on the streets."

Anne-Marie To DC!
Last night, we told you about Anne Marie Williams - who beat out a field of international competitors to get the prestigious Hubert H. Humphrey Fellows Program. It will see her taking part in a -year study program in the US - specifically Washington DC. She told us about it today:.. Ann-Marie Williams, Executive Director - National Women's Commission "I have registered at American University Washington of Law. I will be doing trafficking in person policy and prevention with law. This is not just an academic training per say, it's an opportunity to meet and network with some of the movers and shakers out of Washington DC because it has a lot to do with leadership and also public service and so this is a tremendous opportunity. Women and children are disproportionately affected by trafficking and smuggling and there is that gender dimension to it. One of the course I am doing is gender and international law because you have to see how these things collates around the issue of trafficking, so it's a social science and it's related." "After I come back, who knows where the path may wind. I am coming back equip and willing and able and ready to serve."

Tonight's I AM BELIZE Teacher profile is about Abigail Hoare, from Maud Williams High School. Hoare, like a number of the teachers featured in the profile, says that she stumbled into the profession, but says that she wanted to make an positive difference in people's lives. She says that she made that decision after hearing the message from a guest speaker when she was at the a crossroads in her life:

Ras Indio Turns "Plant Di Corn" Into Anthem
"Plant Di Corn" - it's become the rallying cry for the B(i)GYEA movement in its buffer battle with the Government of Belize. And, now that cry has been turned into a catchy reggae tune. The composer is BGYEA's Belmopan brethren Ras Indio and he gave us a tease of the track today:.. The full video is still in production, but the song is out now.

Channel 5

Alleged rape victim refutes claims made by Adil Abdullah
  A nineteen year old woman alleges that bail bondsman Adil Abdullah raped her on June thirteenth in an area off Mile eight on the George Price Highway. She has [...]

Lavern ‘Antichrist’ Longsworth’s murder conviction is reduced
A murder conviction against Lavern “Anti-Christ’’ Longsworth was reduced to manslaughter by the Court of Appeal today.  Longsworth was convicted of the murder of her common-law husband, David White, back [...]

Marleny Castellanos and her husband get Supreme Court bail
  The alleged master-mind in an immigration scam, Marleny Elizabeth Castellanos and her common-law-husband, Alfredo Marcos, were both granted bail around twelve o’clock despite strong objections from the office of  [...]

12 teachers are fired in the merger of high schools
The merger of three high schools has so far led to the dismissal of a dozen teachers from the Maud Williams, Excelsior and the Sadie Vernon high schools. But questions [...]

San Pedro land dispute heads to court
A major blunder by the Lands Department concerning a three hundred by sixty feet parcel near the municipal airstrip in San Pedro has resulted in a huge land dispute between [...]

G.O.B. appeals financial award granted to 3 George Street gang members
  In November 2011, then-Supreme Court Justice Minnet Hafiz Bertram awarded over ninety-three thousand dollars in general damages and a further twenty-three thousand dollars in costs to three Belize City [...]

2014 Top P.S.E. Scorer acknowledged by San Cas
A student from the Crooked Tree Government School topped this year’s Primary School Exams. It is an accomplishment that was achieved despite very difficult circumstances. But Ashton Tillett persevered and [...]

Antonio Edwards dies after being injured by rosewood flitch
  On January eighth, 2012, Antonio Edwards, a resident of Jacintoville in the Toledo District, was seriously injured when a large flitch of rosewood fell off a flatbed truck and [...]

Interdicted Cop gets bail for attempted murder charge
It was a busy day in court….Interdicted Police Constable, Jesus Marroquin, was today granted Supreme Court bail in the sum of eight thousand dollars. Around eleven this morning, Justice Troadio [...]

Couple charged for drug trafficking on San Pedro
  A police raid at the house of a San Pedro couple yielded one hundred and sixty grams of cannabis; that’s five point six ounces. When police arrived at their [...]

Hotel Association holds A.G.M.
The Belize Hotels Association held its annual general meeting at the Biltmore this morning where hoteliers from across the country gathered to discuss the state of the tourism and hospitality [...]

GREAT Initiative moves to Ladyville – students complete the anti-crime program
There were smiling faces today at the Ladyville Adventist School. It was a special day for students who had successfully completed the Gang Resistance Education and Training Program of the [...]

Skills Training Center graduates 42 youths to join the employment line
There is a new set of graduates from the Skills Training Center located on Magazine Road in Belize City. There is where a ceremony was held today for more than [...]

Ras Indio new release Plant Di Corn
Belizean Reggae Artist, Ras Indio, on the heels of a recent release is at it again with a music video that captures the plight of BGYEA and Harmonyville. He debuted [...]


Anne Marie Gets Into The Humphrey Fellowship Program
Executive Director of the National Women’s Commission, Anne-Marie Williams has been selected to participate in the US Embassy’s 2014-2015 class of Hubert H. Humphrey Fellows Program. The program brings young and mid-career professionals from around the world to the U.S. for a year of non-degree graduate-level study, leadership development, and professional collaboration with U.S. counterparts. Williams will spend the next year at American University beginning in August 2014 to participate in the “Trafficking in Persons, Policy, and Prevention” Humphrey Fellowship.


Reserved Judgement for Tillett, Woodye and Thompson
They were awarded twenty five thousand dollars each by the court after spending eleven months in prison on remand for the 2009 murder of John Paul Saldivar on Ambergris Caye….. but in a turn of fortunate circumstances for the three men, they were set free in January 2010 as the case against them did not even proceed to trial due to a lack of evidence. After regaining their liberties, the trio, Micah Thompson, Sheldon August ‘Pinky’ Tillett and Charles Woodye filed a suit against the Attorney General, Commissioner of Police and Officer Commanding San Pedro Formation, at the time, Dennis Arnold. On November 15, 2011, Justice Minnett Hafiz ruled in favor of the three men and ordered that the Government pays twenty five thousand dollars each for general damages….but that victory was put on pause as the Government appealed the judge’s decision and that is how we ended up at the Court of Appeals today to follow up on the outcome…..while there is no final decision to report tonight, what we can tell you is that the Government’s appeal did give the men’s attorney, Agnes Segura-Gillett the opportunity to request consideration for a bigger award.

Battered Woman Defense Syndrome Used in Belize’s Court of Appeals
Battered Woman Syndrome – it is not a term commonly heard of in Belize not because it is rare but simply because it has not been used as a defense inside the courtroom until recently when Attorney Godfrey Smith put before the Court of Appeal, evidence from psychiatrists and a psychologist to the effect that at the time when his client, Lavern ‘Antichrist’ Longsworth set her, now deceased spouse, David White on fire, she was suffering from Battered Woman Syndrome (BWS), adding that a British Forensic Psychiatrist, Dr. Gillian Mezey had concluded that Longsworth was not in her right state of mind when she committed the act. Smith and his client were before the three Court of Appeal judges last week and their case was adjourned for today, June 20….but there was no definitive outcome in the appeal case today, simply because when the Director of Public Prosecutions, Cheryl Lyn Vidal proposed to lower Longsworth’s sentence of life imprisonment to ten years, Longsworth’s co-attorney, Leslie Mendez rejected the proposal on the grounds that she believes that the life sentence should rather be lowered to time served, which would amount to just under four years.

$20,000 Bail for 40 Immigration Offences
Forty-six year old Marleny Castellanos, a naturalized Belizean originally from Guatemala, who was charged with 40 counts of immigration offences and was remanded into custody, was released today on a bail of $20,000. The bail was offered to her by Justice John Gonzalez on the condition that she surrender all her travel documents, that she reports to Queen Street Police Station every Friday until the case is disposed of and that she does not interfere with any of the witnesses involved In the case. Forty-two year old Alfredo Gonzalez, another naturalized Belizean originally from Guatemala, who was also charged with several immigration offences and was remanded into custody, was also released on bail. Gonzalez bail was $10,000 and Justice Gonzalez offered it to him on the condition that he surrenders all of his travel documents, that he reports to Queen Street Police Station every Friday until the case is concluded and that he does not interfere with the witnesses involved in the case. Castellanos and Gonzalez were represented by attorney Kevin Arthurs while Crown Counsel Leroy Banner represented the respondent.

Rape Victim Comes Forward to Discredit Bishop’s Story
She is a 19-year-old mother who lives with her boyfriend and his family but has been going through the mill recently after she reportedly became a rape victim last Friday, June 13. The story has been in the media since she made her report to the police as there were some challenges in the case particularly when the medical authorities reported that there were no signs of vaginal trauma when they conducted their examination…..but despite those challenges the accused was picked up by the authorities and yesterday, 65-year-old, Adil Abdullah Bishop was arraigned and is now out on a seven thousand dollar bail with an adjournment date set for August 5, 2014. However, in a twist of events, Bishop reported that the young lady’s report is not accurate and that he did not force himself on her. Rather, Bishop claims that he had been having an affair with the complainant for the last six months and that things got testy when he refused to give her four hundred dollars that she was asking him for. Well now it has turned into a matter placed in the court of public opinion as the alleged rape victim contacted the media today to retort Bishop’s story. In her defense, this is what she told Love News this morning.

Belize Woman Chosen For Hubert H. Humphreys Fellowship Program
Her name is no stranger to the local households…as a matter of fact, she was recently highlighted in a photograph exhibition by the Special Envoy for Women and Children as the first female pioneer in the Journalism industry who had mastered her skills in print, radio and television…..and now, today she is back in the media as the proud recipient of the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship Program. Love News met up earlier today with a very ecstatic Ann Marie Williams who told us how she was led to submitting her application for the fellowship and what her thought process was while filling out, what was a very tedious application. ANN MARIE WILLIAMS Award Recipient “The former president of the University of Belize, Dr. Carey Frazer forwarded me an email asking me to consider this opportunity to apply for the Hubert Humphrey Fellowship and I pondered a few days. When I looked at the list of courses in terms of the offerings; it was Human Rights and International Law; it was Trafficking in Persons Policy and Prevention Law, Sustainable Development, Education.


COLA responds to Immigration Minister
A pair of press releases from Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) lambasted Ministers Godwin Hulse and Wilfred Elrington for separate statements made on Wednesday. COLA, which is leading the private prosecution of ex-Minister of State Elvin Penner, believes the Minister of Immigration contradicted himself when he said...

COLA says Attorney General mocking justice system with empty words
Turning to Attorney General Elrington who is quoted as calling COLA’s efforts to privately prosecute Elvin Penner a “waste of time”, a “charade” and a “delusion of the Belizean people,” COLA scolds him, saying that he seems to have forgotten that it was Prime Minister Dean Barrow who recommended the...

Questions about Conditions of Service for teachers of merged schools
As the merger of three Belize City high schools gets on the way, some teachers have already lost their jobs due to redundancy. On Thursday, five teachers from Maude Williams High School, received their official letters of dismissal. Earlier this month, the Minister of Education had stated that they...

Senate Meeting; loan bills approved
The Senate met today to discuss the bills and motions read at the meeting of the House of Representatives last week Friday. Senator the Hon. Lisel Alamilla was not present however , present was Lee Mark Chang, former UDP Standard Bearer for the Freetown Constituency. The two new Senators...

Minister Hulse on further investigations in immigration scandal
Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action, COLA, says it has a copy of the Auditor General’s  preliminary report on investigation into the Elvin Penner passport scandal.  In a previous press briefing, COLA stated that the file in their possession reveals that the Director of Immigration, “…consistently found ways to evade...

Businessman charged for rape of teenager
Businessman 65 year old Adil Abdullah Bishop, was read a single count of rape by Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer in court on Thursday. Mr Bishop met bail of $7,000. According to police, a 19-year-old woman of Belize City reported that Adil Bishop picked her up on June 13, 2014 around...

12 year old accuses 25 year old man of rape
A 12 year old girl is accusing a man twice her age of forcing her into sexual intercourse not once, but twice in the last six months. David Gonzalez, 25, a messenger employed by Home Protector Insurance Company, was read his charges before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer and denied...

Court dismisses appeal of Vincent Tillett
The Court of Appeal has dismissed the appeal of 49 year old Vincent Tillett and upheld his sentence of 15 years in prison for manslaughter. Mr Tillett was accused of the murder of Darwin Philips on February 13, 2011 but was convicted of the lesser charge. Vincent Tillet’s attorney, Anthony...

Income Tax Department Pursue Arrears
The income tax department is gearing up to crack down on persons who owe income tax. To that end, reports are that a company has been contracted to pursue those arrears. While that may seem like a good move, reports to Plusnews are that some of the employees at...

The war on drugs continues in San Pedro
Police on the island of San Pedro are trying to crack down on the drug trade there, which is believed to be the cause of numerous shootings over the past few months.  Earlier this week, police made a bust when they visited a home  on Laguna Drive, Boca Del...

US Visas cancelled erroneously by Immigration Department
The Department of Immigration is in quite a stir after human error accidently cancelled a valid US Visa in the recent weeks. According to reports,  a staff member at the Department of Immigration seriously messed up someone’s expiring passport. According to information, someone took in their Belizean Passport and...

Belize City man shot to the face
There was a shooting in Belize City Tuesday night at around 9:30. 34-year-old Kingsley Ferguson of Neal’s Pen Road Ext. Belize City was shot to the right side of the face, the bullet exiting the left side of his jaw. According to police reports,  Mr Ferguson was sitting on...

Who has Penner-Kim file?
The preliminary report of Auditor General Dorothy Bradley continues to be a talking point for those insisting that the Ministry of Immigration is actively trying to prevent former Minister of State Elvin Penner from being criminally charged under the concurrent investigations of the Police, Financial Intelligence Unit, Auditor General...

Minister Hulse offers reassurances on Puerto Azul
The proposed Puerto Azul project in the Lighthouse Atoll Range has become a lightning rod for environmentalists who are determined not to be shut out of the consultative process leading to a possible green light for the investors. A group of environmental organizations have written to Senator Godwin Hulse,...

Felicia Chen pleads guilty but trial pushed off to October
23 year old Felicia Chen, the mother of four, accused of drowning three of her children, appeared I court on Wednesday. Ms Chen arrived at the court smiling but left crying after her case for murder was traversed to the next session of the Supreme Court which is set...

How accurate are PSE results?
PSE results are out, but according to a media report, The minister of Education is saying, “not necessarily”! The results that were released by the Ministry of Education come complete as they always do each year; with the top performers selected,  with analysis, breakdowns of subsections for each subject,...

Man caught red-handed with stolen TV
36 year old Deon Bainton is accused of stealing a television set from a residence on the Philip Goldson Highway, but he was apparently caught in the act. He pleaded not guilty to charges of burglary and handling stolen goods before Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith on Wednesday, and was...

Ex-footballer discharged after misunderstanding with police officer
An off-duty police officer got into a dispute with a retired footballer aboard a village bus on Monday, but Chief Magistrate Ann-Marie Smith avoided a criminal record for 52 year old Robert “Crane” Major, choosing on Wednesday to discharge him from charges of wounding and damage to property. Robert Major...

Suit brought against Belize Times goes to court
On Wednesday  morning Senator Godwin Hulse and the editor of the People’s United Party organ the Belize Times were before Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin in chambers prior to the intended trial of a suit brought by the Minister. After the discussions, the two sides were limited in their comments...

Mexican businesses looking for Belizean counterparts
Pro Mexico, the equivalent to Beltraide in Belize, is in the country to promote eight Mexican investors looking to start alliances with Belizean entrepreneurs through the annual Mexican Trade Mission. The first session of a series of events took place on Wednesday at the Mexican Embassy in Belmopan, where...

US team offers medical expertise and the Gospel
A team of Christian doctors, nurses, dentists, and paediatricians are in Belize this week to provide free medical services, medication and spiritual guidance to the general public. The group called Shine is a team made up of a group of professionals and other volunteers from various cities in the...


Heart disease, cancer and diabetes are top 3 killers
Official data supplied to Amandala by the Ministry of Health indicate a clear trend, demonstrating that heart disease, cancer and diabetes are the top 3 killers among Belizeans, with unintentional injuries (such as traffic accidents and manslaughter) and homicides, rounding out the top 5 causes of death in the country from 2008 to 2012. Deaths from HIV were the sixth most prevalent over the period. The data indicate that since 2008, nearly 500 Belizeans have been murdered, but twice as many lives have been claimed by the silent killer known as heart disease. Cancer was the second leading cause of death, claiming in excess of 800 lives over the 5-year period. Dr. Marvin Manzanero, head of the Epidemiology Unit in the Ministry of Health, explained that the most cancer deaths among women are due to cervical cancer, but among men, prostate cancer is most prevalent. There were also deaths from cancer of the stomach, lung, breast, liver, and colon, according to information published in the Ministry’s Epidemiology Bulletin of January/February 2014.

Adil Abdullah, 65, charged with rape
The presence of businessman and bail bondsman Adil Mohammed Abdullah (formerly Errol Bishop), 65, around the court buildings on Treasury Lane is routine. But this morning, after a night in police custody, a disoriented-looking Abdullah emerged in handcuffs from the police van transporting detained persons for arraignment at the court. Police charged Abdullah with one count of rape. No plea was required from him after Chief Magistrate Ann Marie Smith read the single charge to him. The offense of rape is an indictable offense and will be heard in the Supreme Court, if a preliminary inquiry determines that there is a prima facie case against him. Abdullah was released on $7,000 bail plus one surety in the same amount. He is scheduled to return to court on August 5. Police laid the rape charge against Abdullah after a 19-year-old woman reported to them that he raped her. She told police that on Friday, June 13, around 3:45 p.m., Abdullah picked her up on Marine Parade Boulevard.

Did Baby Zayden die in hospital morgue?
A distressed family from Blackman Eddy Village is presently doing their best to understand the puzzling circumstances surrounding the death of their newborn, whom doctors declared stillborn, but whose grandmother does not believe this was the case. Allisha Bell, 17, and Marlon Reymundo, 24, went to the Western Regional Hospital in Belmopan on Saturday, June 7, for the birth of their first child, a baby boy. In this case, however, there was no happy ending because shortly after the young mother underwent a C-section to deliver Baby Zayden, they got the grim news that the toddler had been pronounced dead at birth. Although saddened, the family acknowledged the loss, knowing the probability of such occurrences – that is, until the baby’s grandmother, Yolanda Molina, who is also the chairlady of Blackman Eddy, went back to the hospital’s morgue three days later and made a baffling discovery.

Felicia Chen, 23, indicted on 3 counts of murder
Felicia Chen, 22, the young mother accused of drowning three of her children on April 27, arrived on the bus from the Belize Central Prison this morning, and later took her place in the prisoner’s dock in the Supreme Court of Justice John Troadio Gonzalez, who read the three murder indictments to her. Chen, who appeared unrepresented by an attorney, attempted to plead guilty to the three counts of murder, but Justice Gonzalez explained to her that the Laws of Belize do not allow for guilty pleas in murder indictments. The case has to be tried, and a person accused of murder has to be represented by a defense counsel. If an accused murderer cannot afford an attorney, the state has to provide one. When Chen was first arraigned in the Magistrate’s Court on the murder charges, she was represented by Senior Counsel Antoinette Moore. But Moore was recently appointed a temporary Justice of the Supreme Court, and is presently presiding over the Southern Session of the Court; she therefore is unable to continue representing Chen at this juncture of her case.

David Gonzalez, 25, charged with two counts of rape of young girls
A Belize City messenger was remanded to the Belize Central Prison after he was arraigned on two counts of rape in the courtroom of Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer this afternoon. Frazer told David Gonzalez, 25, a resident of #5 Pickstock Street and a messenger employed at Home Protector Insurance, that he does not have to enter a plea because rape is an indictable offence and his case will be heard in the Supreme Court. Frazer added that under the section of the Crime Control Act under which Gonzalez has been charged by police, her court cannot offer him bail for another 90 days. Gonzalez was remanded to prison until his next court date on August 5.

OAS commissions study in preparation for guide for decriminalization of homosexuality
At its 44th General Assembly held in Paraguay earlier this month under the theme “Development with Social Inclusion,” the Organization of American States (OAS), the hemispheric organization of which Belize is an active member, passed a resolution supported by over 20 of 35 member states on Human Rights, Sexual Orientation, Gender Identity and Expression, which calls for a move across the Americas to decriminalize homosexuality. The resolution calls on members to activate the mechanism of the Inter-American Commission on Humans Rights (IACHR), which recently heard a case lodged by UNIBAM against the Government of Belize, in order “to continue preparing a study on legislation and provisions in force in the OAS member states restricting the human rights of individuals by reason of their sexual orientation or gender identity or expression…” The resolution also calls for the preparation of a guide, based on that study, “aimed at promoting the decriminalization of homosexuality and practices related to gender identity or expression.”

PM in the eye of the storm over Penner scandal
Today, Senior Counsel Eamon Courtenay, president of the Bar Association of Belize, referred to Prime Minister Dean Barrow as “a Penner-loving, Castro-hugging…” Prime Minister, as he fielded questions from the media on the ongoing schism between the Bar Association and the Barrow administration over the reappointment of Justice Samuel Awich to the Court of Appeal. Courtenay’s provocative comments echo suggestions from Opposition Leader Francis Fonseca that the Barrow administration is covering up some underlying aspects of the passport scandal involving former Minister of State for Immigration, Elvin Penner, who Barrow sacked last September after receiving reports of improprieties from another Cabinet member. In the National Assembly on Friday, Fonseca and Barrow had a back-and-forth on the Penner passport scandal, and more specifically, the recently unearthed preliminary report of the Auditor General, previewed last week by Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA).

Ramon Cervantes wins OW North PUP convention
The convention to elect a standard-bearer for the People’s United Party (PUP) in the Orange Walk North constituency was held this past Sunday, June 16, and out of the three candidates, it was Ramon “Monchie” Cervantes, Jr. who emerged victorious. Cervantes was able to garner 1,394 votes, almost 75% of the 1,863 votes cast, while Alfredo Ortega received 439 ballots and Jaime Castillo got 30 votes. In March of this year, the other three PUP standard-bearers for the Orange Walk District, Hon. John Briceno, Hon. Jose Abelardo Mai and Hon. Marco Tulio Mendez, were endorsed by their party to stand for re-election in the 2017 general elections in Orange Walk Central, Orange Walk South and Orange Walk East respectively.

Cricket Corner
The other day, I was talking to Mr. Norris Harris of Double Head Cabbage (inset). Mr. Harris is in his early eighties, but still going strong. He is a great and respectable cricket fan wherever he is watching a game. We were talking cricket, as usual, and it flashed in my mind how cricket has changed in the Belize District (River Valley) so much. Not much for the better, though. Players must learn and understand the true meaning of the sport and the spirit thereto. Cricket is known to be a gentleman’s game from as far back as I can remember. I’m from one of the cricket playing areas, and I could remember as a little boy, when a game is to be played home, there was a lot to do Friday evening, helping my grandmother with whatever chore around the house. That is if I want to go watch the cricket game. On Saturday morning, my grandmother would wake up early and press (iron) my uncle Napolean Banner’s white uniform that was previously starched. She would have mid-day lunch on the fire in the pot at the same time. For, when the game reaches halfway mark, we would come home for lunch and be finished in time for the second half.

Dangriga sports stats
The Stann Creek District Belikin 8-Ball Tournament continued on Thursday, June 12, at Santa Cruz Sports Bar, where Scorpions of Santa Cruz went up against G.T. Kids from Sarawee Village, and it was Santa Cruz over G.T. Kids, 4-1. Game winners for Scorpions were: Daniel Barrera over Victor Hernandez, 3-0; David Foreman over Wayne Pascascio, 3-0; Brayan Bautista over Lundon Parham, 3-0; and Jose Espinosa over Jerome Rivas, 3-0; while for G.T. Kids it was Richard Juarez, 3-1, over Juan Carlos Munguia of Santa Cruz. On Friday, June 13, at Fairview 2 Cool Spot in Steadfast Village, Steadfast Boys hosted Valley Shooters of Pomona and lost to the visitors by a 3-2 score. Shooters’ victories were by: Ruben Ortiz over Ashley Ritchie, 3-0; Charles Rivas over Everald Choc, 3-0; and Anthony Rancharan over Cesar Leon, 3-1; while wins for Steadfast Boys were by Lawrence Choc over Carlos Burgos, 3-1; and Jose Morales over Victor Melendez, 3-1.

NEBL 2014 Performance
The 2014 National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) is pleased to announce the winners of the regular season performance awards. The winners were determined by a combination of statistical impact and vote by coaches. Each coach was asked to vote for their choice of 1st, 2nd, 3rd, and 4th in each category. Additionally, the players were ranked statistically, 1 through 4, in each category. Points were allotted for place votes as follows: 1st place vote = 20 pts; 2nd place vote = 10 pts; 3rd place vote = 5 pts; 4th place vote = 2 pts. The statistical votes were also allotted points as indicated above. The results were as follows: Most Valuable Player (MVP) – Farron Lauriano, Cayo (150 points); Winston Pratt, San Pedro (90 points); Kurt Burgess, Cayo (69 points); Gregory Rudon, Belize City (24 points).

World Cup 2014
The first round of Group Stage games end tomorrow with Group H encounters featuring Belgium vs Algeria at 10:00 a.m. and Russia vs Korea Republic at 4:00 p.m.; while the second round begins with the Group A clash – Brazil vs Mexico at 1:00 p.m. First round results so far, by group, include: June 12 – (A) Brazil 3-1 Croatia. June 13 – (A) Mexico 1-0 Cameroon; (B) Netherlands 5-1 Spain; (B) Chile 3-1 Australia. June 14 – (C) Colombia 3-0 Greece; (D) Costa Rica 3-1 Uruguay; (D) Italy 2-1 England; (C) Cote d’Ivoire 2-1 Japan. June 15 – (E) Switzerland 2-1 Ecuador; (E) France 3-0 Honduras; (F) Argentina 2-1 Bosnia & Herzegovina. June 16 – (G) Germany 4-0 Portugal; (F) Iran 0-0 Nigeria; (G) USA 2-1 Ghana. June 17 – (H) Belgium 2-1 Algeria; (A) Brazil 0-0 Mexico; (H) Russia 1-1 Korea Republic. June 18 – (B) Netherlands 3-2 Australia; (B) Chile 2-0 Spain; (A) Crotia 4-0 Cameroon. June 19 – (C) Colombia 2-1 Cote d’Ivoire; (D) Uruguay 2-1 England; (C) Japan 0-0 Greece.

EDITORIAL : Money is a very powerful commodity. Money can make people change their beliefs and their behavior. It had appeared to Belizean people during the administrations of the Jesuit-trained Rt. Hon. George Price and Rt. Hon. Manuel Esquivel that these two leaders, our first two Prime Ministers, were not in it for the money. Things began to change in Belize in 1989. Yet, the contrary results of the 1993 general election, in which the PUP’s big money was defeated by an almost ramshackle UDP/NABR coalition, suggested that money, as such, still did not decide elections here on its own. We have been saying to you for some time that the two-party system in Belize suits the wealthy power structure, what we call the “oligarchy.” The present system is pleasing to the rich people. With respect to philosophy and policies, there is not that much difference between the United Democratic Party (UDP) and the People’s United Party (PUP) today. The PUP threw money around when they were in office from 1998 to 2008: they lived for today, and did not worry about tomorrow. The UDP was elected on a platform of fiscal frugality, which appeared necessary because Belize had entered a debt crisis. So, there are differences in style and approaches between the UDP and the PUP. But they, the political leaders of our sovereign nation, both depend on the goodwill of the rich – the local oligarchy and friendly foreign governments. Belize is a beggar nation.

From The Publisher
In my organizations, the essential quality my generals must have is the ability to think things through for themselves. This is the way I was raised. An elder or superior was not supposed to have to spell out matters for you in some rote a-b-c manner. Once your superior gave you keys to work with, then it was up to you to open up the doors with respect to decisions and actions. If you could not do that tactically on a consistent basis, then that meant you were deficient in some important way. Those with brains to think, let them think. That said, I have managed to get Kremandala this far, but, as I explained in my mid-week column, in business there are no guarantees. My older children are organized and they meet among themselves regularly. They make decisions amongst themselves. In their specific areas of management, they rely on their own generals. The UBAD Educational Foundation (UEF) is a non-business organization which meets every month at the executive level and runs various operations, the largest of which is probably the African and Indian (Indigenous) Library. The UEF was established in 1996, and most of its original board members were former United Black Association for Development (UBAD) officers. Today, the only former UBAD officers remaining on the board are myself and Rufus X. But, we two are not really active. The UEF has been run for years now by Ya Ya Marin Coleman and Virginia Echols. Ya Ya is the chairlady, but Virginia is very powerful, by virtue of her status as an original board member and because of her polished personality.

Letters: Trust no seller or agent
Seven years ago, on 24th March 2006, I, S. P. Lightburn, “purchaser,” received a receipt for the balance in full, from the “vendor,” Mr. Emory King, for a plot of land measuring 60 feet by 120 feet, situate at Mile 14, namely, Tropical Park, on the Western Highway. The plot of land was the freehold property of Mr. Emory King who was the person legally entitled to sell this property. At the time of the transaction, I was aware that a lawyer, a friend of mine, had also purchased two lots, from the same vendor, at around the same time that I had bought mine, and had received her land title documents from the same law firm that was processing my land title documents. Mr. Emory King assured me that I would be in possession of my land title document, after his lawyer had sorted out the legal technicalities involved in a land transfer. He assured me that there was no need to hire my own lawyer to register the land title documents at the Lands Department, because his lawyer would ensure my legal position and rights as the owner of the land I had purchased. He assured me that the legal cost of the transfer was included in the purchase cost.

Guatemalan authorities confiscate $38,000 worth of contraband cigarettes
A smuggling operation which was launched by authorities in neighboring Guatemala yesterday netted more than 50 boxes of contraband cigarettes onboard a cargo truck which is believed to have originated from Belize. According to Guatemalan police, the illicit cargo – which consisted of an estimated 247,400 cigarettes valued at 150,000 quetzals or BZ$38,220.99 – was seized early yesterday morning on a dirt road near the urban area of Santa Ana Village, located in Petén, Guatemala. They reported that while they were able to sequester the contraband merchandise, the driver of the vehicle was able to escape by fleeing into some bushes. Nevertheless, the shipment was transported into police custody in San Benito, Guatemala, as evidence for the investigators who are working on the case.

High schools merger casualty – 12 teachers terminated!
Twelve teachers from three Belize City high schools will not return to their jobs at the start of the new school year, after a decision issued from their school managements – in one case with an [...]

Standing up to bullies
There is this ad that runs on US television stations about stopping bullying and it features what kids should do if they witness bullying, which is basically, call an adult to intervene. However, whom does an [...]

BAA gets new Board of Directors
Some 6 months after being disbanded in the wake of a scandal involving questionable checks which were issued to a sitting Cabinet minister of state, a new board of directors has been appointed to the Belize [...]

6 to be decorated with Queen’s Honours
Six Belizeans have been chosen to receive Queen’s Honours, according to an announcement issued this week from the Office of the Governor-General at the Belize House in the City of Belmopan. The highest-ranking honor will go [...]

Tuesday, July 13, 2004 FROM THE PUBLISHER
(Publisher’s NOTE: I have been wanting to re-publish the following column for a long, long time, but I could not find the specific Amandala in our archives in which it first appeared. Finally, I realized what [...]

Green Tropics pitches $500,000 proposal to break stalemate with Valley of Peace farmers
Lawyers for Green Tropics told Amandala this evening that they have formally pitched a proposal to the group of 33 farmers living in the Valley of Peace area who they last week served with eviction notices, [...]

PM dismisses SATIIM’s stance on oil drilling in the south
He says the organization has “no proper standing” in negotiations with southern communities For quite some time now, SATIIM – the Sarstoon-Temash Institute for Indigenous Management, has been advocating for the rights of the buffer communities [...]

“There are many more important issues rather than harping on a matter like the Penner matter.” – Attorney General Wilfred Elrington
COLA’s private prosecution a waste of time — Attorney General There is no list of missing Penner files — Immigration Minister The Elvin Penner passport scandal that has been rocking the Dean Barrow administration since September [...]

Fire partially destroys house on Mahogany Street
The house of Bokang “Prince” Nyathi, 48, located at the corner of Mahogany and Jasmine Streets, was destroyed by fire at about 3:20 this morning. The house is a concrete bungalow and the interior of the [...]

35 more City streets to be paved: GOB
In February of this year, the Government of Belize (GOB) committed a total of 10 million dollars to infrastructure works across Belize City, and this past Wednesday at his press conference, Prime Minister Dean Barrow outlined [...]

Convicted killer Vincent Tillett, 49, loses appeal
Because of the “Evidence Act,” hostile witnesses’ statements admitted into evidence Vincent Tillett, who was charged for murder but was convicted of the lesser charge of manslaughter and sentenced to serve 15 years in prison, lost [...]

Neal Pen Road man shot in Junesville
A resident of Neal Pen Road in the Lake I area has become the second person shot in the area within three days, in the seemingly never-ending gun violence being perpetrated in Belize City by feuding [...]

At 15, yes is no; it’s the law
A 16-year-old youth of Corozal is in big trouble after he engaged a 15-year-old girl in sexual intercourse. Police have sent the file to the Director of Public Prosecutions, and the boy has been released into [...]

San Ignacio cop investigated for alleged domestic abuse
The officer, who was allegedly drunk, reportedly slapped his common-law wife Just last week, we reported that four officers from the San Ignacio Police Formation had been criminally charged for an altercation with a group of [...]

Caye Caulker businessman, 42, acquitted of sexually assaulting girl, 13
A Caye Caulker businessman who was accused of sexually assaulting a 13-year-old girl more than a year ago was acquitted today of one count of aggravated assault of an indecent nature. Jerod Emmanuel Dawson, 42, a [...]

Improvised silencer for .22 pistol found in Orange Walk
Three men who were busted with a .22 pistol adapted with an improvised silencer made from a vehicle oil filter, have been remanded to the Belize Central Prison until July 30, on charges of “kept unlicensed [...]

Gungulung resident shot in the back
A resident of the Gungulung area of the Lake I area, Ephraim Assi, 22, of Miller Street, was shot in his back by an unknown gunman while he and other men were sitting on the basketball [...]

Two home burglaries – in Orange Walk and Belize City
Two homes – one in Belize City and the other in Orange Walk Town – were broken into by thieves. In Orange Walk Town, a thief entered the bedroom of a couple who was sleeping, and [...]

Father acquitted of sexually assaulting 15-year-old daughter
The girl told the court that she made up the story A Belize City man was today acquitted of a charge of aggravated assault of an indecent nature upon his 15-year-old daughter, when the minor admitted, [...]

Stolen boat and golf cart recovered
Police report that a boat valued at $55,000 was stolen from the Conch Shell Bay area of the city, sometime between 5:30 Thursday evening and 8:00 Friday morning. In another robbery, a golf cart valued at [...]

MoneyGram thieves captured one week after heist
The men believed to be the thieves who robbed the MoneyGram Store in Orange Walk have been remanded to the Belize Central Prison, five days after they carried out the robbery. Police say that Martin Rigoberto [...]

Minor, 16, found with 18-pound sack of weed
Sometime after 10:00 yesterday morning, Santa Elena police who were conducting routine patrols near a football field on Bradley Street in Santa Elena Town spotted a young man who ran off, leaving a crocus bag which [...]

Chinese grocer accused of pointing gun at taxi driver in PG
The taxi driver reportedly owes the grocer $170 An outstanding bill which was apparently racked up by a taxi driver in Punta Gorda Town almost led to tragedy when the creditor allegedly sought the aid of [...]

The Reporter

Argentina faces default
Argentina is on the verge of another default and that country’s President, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner has said that her government would negotiate with all the country’s creditors. It comes when Argentina may start talks with investors who refused to take part in two restructurings. Argentina has been in conflict with hedge funds which are demanding full payment for bonds they bought after the country defaulted. The country has been in a 12-year fight in the US courts with hold-outs who declined to participate a 2005 and 2010 revamp of debt securities. Under the deal, 92 percent of bondholders accepted about a third of the original value of their investment. However, on Monday, a US Supreme Court ruling sided with bondholders demanding Argentina pay them the full $1.3 billion value. The bondholders also won the right to use the US courts to force Argentina to reveal where it owns assets around the world. The court’s decision means that bondholders should find it easier to collect their debts.

Chikungunya spreads to Cuba
Cuba has confirmed its first six cases of the mosquito-borne chikungunya virus, making that country the latest Caribbean nation to confirm cases of the virus. According to the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO) there had been 4,600 confirmed and 166,000 suspected cases in the Caribbean as of mid-June. According to the Cuban health ministry, people with the virus had recently travelled to Haiti or the Dominican Republic where thousands of people have reported suffering from the severe headaches, high fever and intense joint pain symptomatic for the virus. Officials said they would strengthen surveillance and control measures of travellers arriving from countries mainly in the Caribbean. The virus is also spreading quickly in the Dominican Republic and Haiti, and there have been confirmed cases in most of the Caribbean island states.

Cane farmers to meet season quota despite late start
Despite the two-month delay for the start for the 2013-2014 sugar cane crops, the cane industry is preparing to either meet or exceed its 1.2 million ton quota. According to John Gillett, factory manager for Belize Sugar Industries Limited, the factory milled over 1,068,000 tons of cane this week, producing some 111,000 tons of sugar. Gillett says that the factory and farmers can realise even more than this, depending on the weather. “We know that there is still an amount of cane out there, and if the weather holds up we want to do our best to harvest most of it. If we can harvest most of that cane our production could be well in excess of 120,000 tons of sugar.” Gillett told the Reporter this week.

Family convinced that newborn was placed in morgue alive, doctor says that is likely occurrence
While the Ministry of Health has concluded that the procedural information following the birth of a baby boy on Saturday, June 17th at the Western Regional Hospital suggests the child was stillborn, a medical doctor has told The Reporter that it is likely that […]

Unions want PM to resume negotiations
The unions who were recently engaged in negotiations with the government over salary adjustments say that they still have other proposals on the table that haven’t been addressed. Marvin Blades, Public Service Union (PSU) president told The Reporter that the outstanding proposals include income […]

Mating season claims the life of female manatee
A female manatee is dead this week after it was drowned in the Belize River by a group of male manatees trying to mate with it. Coastal Zone Management Authority and Institute concluded that the cow (female manatee) had drowned, after an autopsy revealed 45 […]

Luke Espat owes bank nearly 30 million for failed project
BELIZE CITY, Mon. June 16th, 2014 Businessman Luke Espat is now personally liable for nearly $30 million in personal guarantees made to the Belize Bank, after the Court of Appeal refused his application for leave to appeal a summary judgment handed down by the Supreme […]

Mexican businesses seeking partners in Belize
A trade mission was hosted Thursday by the Institute of Mexico to foster greater trade relations between Mexican entrepreneurs and their Belizean counterparts. Javier Aguilar, Mexican Embassy Head of Trade Investment and Tourist Affairs, explained the mission was made up of Mexican businesses looking […]

Bar President Courtenay: P.M. “lied” about Awich
BELIZE CITY, Mon. June 16, 2014 President of the Bar Association of Belize, Senior Counsel Eamon Courtenay, has denounced as “lies” suggestions by Prime Minister Dean Barrow that he is pursuing Justice of the Court of Appeal Samuel Awich on behalf of the Ashcroft Alliance. […]

BGYEA beats GOB in court
The Supreme Court on Friday ruled in favor of the Belize Grassroots Youth Empowerment Association to remove the injunction placed on them by the Government of Belize. Justice Courtney Abel decided to discharge the injunction after the Office of the Solicitor General made several procedural […]

Immigration Minister: “I don’t know” who has Kim file
BELIZE CITY, Thurs. June 19, 2014 Minister of Immigration and Nationality Senator Godwin Hulse says the “chain of custody” regarding the file of Won Hong Kim broke down after ex-Minister of State in his Ministry, Elvin Penner, took that file and others from the Department […]

Overall conviction rate at 39% in 2013
Court convictions in the Supreme Court for 2013 were at 39 percent, according to records from the office of the Director of Public Prosecutions. There is a striking disparity between these statistics and the lay man’s perspective on the conviction rate, primarily as it […]

The decision by the Ministry of Education not to buy BRC reader books for the school year 2014/15 is a bad decision which should be reviewed. BRC reader books have been well established in the lower grades of the Belize Primary Schools System. For the better part of 30 […]

People who illegally and arbitrarily take over and occupy land which does not belong to them have become a serious problem in Belize. Last week in a full-page spread, the European company Green Tropics, which is investing heavily in Belize’s new sugar factory for the Cayo District, complained that […]

‘Firings Not Fair’ say teachers!
Several teachers from Maud Williams and Sadie Vernon high schools who were given termination letters have said they feel the terminations to be unfair and are seeking clarification on the methodology used to make those selections. Many teachers told The Reporter that they have […]

Business senator: ‘Senate failing Belizeans!’
Senator representing the private sector Mark Lizarraga called out the Senate during Thursday’s sitting for “failing miserably to perform our most basic obligations,” as mandated by Belize’s constitution. “We are suffering from an urgent crisis of the erosion of public confidence in governance,” Lizarraga […]

COLA calls out Minister Hulse on Penner files
Citizens Organized for Liberty through Action (COLA) have called out Immigration Minister Godwin Hulse on his statement claiming that he never received a letter with a list of the files taken by Elvin Penner. COLA refuted Hulse’s claim by citing a portion of the allegedly leaked Auditor General Immigration report […]

$314,500 Fantasy Five fraud!
A woman tried to become $314,500 richer when she went to collect the Fantasy Five jackpot last Friday by fraudulent means, using the portions of two separate tickets to make them appear as one winning ticket. Fantasy Five issued a press release this week about […]

Businessman denies rape claim!
Rape charges have been brought against a 65-year-old businessman, Adil Abdullah – a well-known and established bail bondsman of a Reggae Street address in Belize City. Abdullah, also known as Abdullah Bishop, claims he is innocent and the victim of a shake down. After spending […]

The Belize Times

“Penner Loving, Castro Hugging, Lying Prime Minister”
President of the Bar Association Eamon Courtenay blasted Prime Minister Dean Barrow in response to Barrow’s vicious attacks against him at the Sitting of the House of Representing on Friday, June 13th. Courtenay said Barrow is a “Penner Loving, Castro Hugging, Lying Prime Minister”, poking at Barrow’s tremendous failure to adequately deal with the scandals weighing down his administration, which have been caused by disgraced UDP Ministers Elvin Penner and Edmond Castro. Prime Minister Dean Barrow cowardly attacked Eamon Courtenay within the confines of the House of Representative where he enjoys immunity. This is something he enjoys doing, singling out private citizens and calling them all sorts of demeaning names out of disrespect. Barrow is angry at the Bar Association for opposing his reinstatement of Justice Samuel Awich to the Court of Appeal. Barrow said the Association’s President “found reason” to put forward the position because of his affiliation to the Ashcroft Alliance.

Think About It
The mega exclusive tourist project for the super rich which will use Northern Caye in the Lighthouse Reef vicinity is a done deal. The project first went to cabinet and got the green light months ago. The Investors proceeded and reached the stage where they unveiled the launching at the opening of the Cannes Film Festival last month where movie stars and Hollywood glitterati gather. Present at this super launch was Belize’s Minister of Economic Development Erwin Contreras and Minister of Tourism Manuel Heredia. It is understood the Ministers took their families. All expenses paid for by Puerto Azul, in breach of the Constitution of Belize which requires Ministers not to have their integrity called into question. But then again for the UDP Government such things don’t matter.

On Barrow’s Theatrics
By G. Michael Reid Prime Minister Dean Barrow hurriedly called a press conference last Wednesday after news broke about the formation of a new activist group called ROC. Rod of Correction is an amalgamation of the unions, churches and social activist organizations which include the Sarstoon Temash Institute for Indigenous Management

A National Disaster
On paper the concept of a National Bank in the Caribbean always resonates positively, because as patriotic citizens one believes that if the country owns assets they should benefit the majority. It is not a wrong premise, but in banking other complex factors come into play. When the concept of National

Belize Bank Bulldogs, Customs & NSC win Interoffice softball
On Saturday, June 14th Shawn Gordon led Customs/Central Bank to their 11-6 victory over KHMH. Keemar King and Kareem Michael scored 2 runs each and Sasha Brown, Luis Alpuche and Gilly Gordon scored a run apiece to seal the win. Floyd Flowers led KHMH with 2 runs while Kiri Lizama, Ricardo Hermoso and Dwayne Willacey each scored one run. The Belize Bank Bulldogs came from behind to beat Digicell 4G: 6-4. Bulldogs’ Eliseo Rosado and Tyra Moriera scored 2 runs each while Agnes Lucas, Godsden Ferguson Jr scored a run apiece. Digicell’s Nelson Tillett, Trenton Marin, Muschae Macdonald and relief pitcher Bernard Pitts scored a run apiece.

Rising Stars, Third World & City Boys win in SMART Mundialito
The Ladyville Rising Stars enjoyed a 2-0 win against the Hattieville United Youth Sporting Club in Week 6 of the 2014 SMART Mundialito at the Yabra green in Belize City on Saturday. The scoring for the Rising Stars was led by Farron Broaster and Kenroy Allen. Other Games: Third World vs. Heights FC – 2-0 Goals by Jonah Chebat, Ajani Vaughn City Boys Jrs. vs. Brown Bombers – 1-0 Goal by Akeem Sutherland Collet Strikers vs. Carlston FC – 0-0 London Strikers vs. Ladyville Jaguars 0-0 Week 7 on Saturday, June 21 City Boys vs. London Strikers Collet Strikers vs. Ladyville Jaguars Third World vs. Hattieville United Carlston FC vs. Heights FC

Tigersharks wins Finals Game 1: 53-52
The San Pedro Tigersharks enjoyed a 53-52 nail-biting win in Game 1 of the National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) championship finals against Cayo’s Western Ballaz at the Angel Nunez auditorium at the San Pedro High School on Isla Bonita on Father’s Day. Cayo was still up 52-51 with a minute to play when a referee called a foul in the Ballaz favor which should have sent them to the charity stripe to increase their lead. Instead the call was reversed, changing it to a jump ball and Tigersharks got possession, allowing Winston “Air Jun” Pratt to drive to the rim for the winning basket with only 30 seconds left to play, no time for the Ballaz to recover.

Fonseca to Barrow: Stop the Cover Up!!
City of Belmopan, June 13, 2014 The UDP Government continues to cover up the stink that is the Penner Immigration scandal. The odour is too strong however and each passing week Belizeans are learning how deep and murky the scandal is. Last ...

Hospital sent baby to morgue alive?
Belmopan, June 13th 2014 A 17 year old Belmopan mother is living through a nightmare, fearing ...

Violent Crime Surges – 1 daylight murder, 5 shootings in 4 days
Belize City, June 18, 2014 The cases of cold-blooded murders and senseless shootings are piling up on the Police Department. Over the last five days there have been five shootings, including a terrifying ...

BYM Corozal Bay formed
Corozal Town, June 15th, 2014 On Friday, June 13th a group of young leaders met at the People’s United Party Corozal Bay office on College Road to form the Corozal Bay Belize Youth Movement. The group was sworn in by National President ...

Ministry of Education Fires Teachers!
Belize City, June 18th, 2014 Just as the quarrelsome Minister of Education Patrick Faber warned would happen, the firing of teachers has begun. The decision to dismiss the teachers forms part of the Ministry of Education’s plan to amalgamate three schools: Maud ...

Doing OUR Part in Belize Rural Central
Belize District, June 13, 2014 On Saturday, June 7, 2014, which was National Environment Day, Hon. Dolores Balderamos Garcia and members of her committee, did their part in the clean-up of the George Price Highway, and participated by cleaning and bagging ...

BE BAFFU – Art, poetry and thinking at the edge of the Haulover Creek
by Yasser Musa, 15 June 2014 For the past few months I’ve been interacting with a bunch of Baffuists, young ...

There is something about being in love that tweaks one’s reality until even the most depressing events become lyrics of strength and passion in the pursuit of the heart’s desire.  The grass is greener. The sky is bluer. Every delicate butterfly that alights on a vibrant bloom carries messages of ...

HOME ECONOMICS – Proposals for Equitable land holding and development
By Richard Harrison Belize’s total land mass is 2,275,353 hectares (5,620,121 acres)…with 1,434,119 hectares (63.36%) owned by government...and 841,234 hectares (36.64%) owned privately. - Global Forest Resources Assessment 2010 (FRA 2010). Of 841,234 hectares that is privately held it is estimated that less than 1% of the population (approx. 3,500 persons) own ...

Houston Hurricanes sign Belizean Evan Mariano
Belmopan, June 13, 2014 Belizean football striker Evan Mariano flew out to Houston, Texas, USA over the weekend to take up his new career, playing professional football for the Houston Hurricanes FC, a club that plays in the National Premier Soccer ...

UB President to PM: Your Policies Suck!
City of Belmopan, 2 June 2014 By Norris Hall In the first part of this expose published in the Sunday, May 25th edition we reported on the serious state of affairs at the University of Belize and the lack of cooperation by its Board of Trustees with the most recent President (the ...

WOMAN IN THE HOUSE: An Unnecessary Statement
By Dolores Balderamos Garcia Last Friday June 13th during the sitting of the House of Representatives, the Honourable Member for Collet, who is Minister of Education, rose to make a Statement by a Minister. The Order of Business in the Standing Orders allows for Statements by Ministers before the Introduction of ...

The Reappointment of Awich and Independence of the Court of Appeal
By E. Andrew Marshalleck SC Prime Minister Barrow has both in his recent press conference and in the last meeting of the House of Representatives taken much time to address the concerns expressed in the recent Bar resolution about the negative ...

REFLECTIONS ON THE PUBLIC SQUARE: The Garifuna Collective: Making Belize Proud
By Francis W. Fonseca Last week I had the privilege of meeting with a few members of The Garifuna Collective Band who were in Belize dealing with some logistical and organizational issues while the Band continues its 2014 European Tour. The Bands representatives Joshua Arana and Ivan Duran (StoneTree Records) are professional, ...

PUP fights for Rural Electrification
Belize City, June 14th, 2014 At the last sitting of the House of Representatives held on Friday, June 13th, 2014 a Motion was passed called the CARIBBEAN ...

UDP Grabs Lands in Dangriga!
Dangriga Town, June 18, 2014 The people of Dangriga should be aware that the United Democratic Party is grabbing up land in their municipality. These lands could be distributed to needy residents or interested investors for job creation instead of going ...

No Water Board in Billy White!
Cayo District, June 18, 2014 It is now more than one year since the last village Council elections and to date the Ministry of local Government refuses to assist in forming a new Water Board for Billy White Village. The UDP Water Board appointed for the years 2010-2013 resigned one year after ...

Green Tropics & Valley of Peace farmers in dispute over land
Belize City, June 17th, 2014 Valley of Peace farmers and Spanish/Guatemalan Company, Green Tropics Limited, are locked in yet another dispute, this time over a block of land used by the farmers to supply a significant portion of the vegetables in ...

Patrick JonesPJ

NWC president wins prestigious fellowship
President of the National Women’s Commission of Belize Ann-Marie Williams joins a prestigious group of scholars from around the world as the first Belizean winner of the Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship, named after the former U.S. Vice President and Senator. Williams is preparing to leave for Washington, D.C., […]

Garifuna community organizes to buy T.V. Ramos bust
The bust of Thomas Vincent Ramos, Garifuna hero and organizer of Garifuna Settlement Day, is sitting outside the home of its creator, Stephen Okeke. Okeke wants $40,000 to take it off his hands after falling out with key members of the Garifuna community who had intended to buy […]

Ann-Marie Williams says “Occupy Belmopan” will not affect gender policy implementation
President of the National Women’s Commission, Ann Marie Williams will be on leave as she pursues studies in trafficking in persons. But an issue she has been championing, the Revised National Gender Policy, remains under attack from a group of church leaders and pastors who are presently occupying […]

Court hears appeal of false imprisonment award case
In November of 2011, then-Supreme Court Justice Minnet Hafiz Bertram awarded over $93,000 in general damages and a further $23,000 in costs to three Belize City men who sued for false imprisonment and malicious prosecution after being wrongfully accused of involvement in a murder in San Pedro, Ambergris […]

Man accused of shooting at dogs to be released … but when?
A San Pedro man appeared in Belize City Magistrate’s Court charged with discharging a firearm within 40 yards of a public road. But he claims that he was doing it to protect himself from two pitbulls who came after him. The man is 33 year old cabinetmaker Byron […]

Couple accused of immigration offences granted bail
Guatemalans Marleny Castellanos and Alfredo Gonzalez Marcos were granted bail of $20,000 and $10,000 each today by Justice Troadio Gonzalez. They are accused of illegally using fraudulent Belizean documents to stay in Belize. Castellanos is further accused of helping as many as 18 Central American nationals from the […]


“You’re Doing What?” by Rich Henry
Like many others out there, my wife and I have decided that it’s time to hit the road. Belize? Where exactly is that? Somewhere “down there”, one of those countries in the middle. After some research and talking to friends that have either been there (or now live there), we’ve decided that San Pedro Town on the Ambergris Caye is our target for several months. “Why so long?” our friends ask. Well, why not? We’re both island oriented at heart, having already visited the Hawaiian Islands, the Bahamas, the Grenadines and many others. The laid back lifestyle, the fact that it’s not too far from where we live in the States, the chance to say “We lived in San Pedro, Belize for a while” all make it attractive to us. This whole thing is a “bucket list” check-off for us. I told my wife that before one of us is in a wheelchair someday that we should break the rules and live outside the box. Hence, live somewhere else for a while. Have an adventure, break away from the routine. Who knows, maybe we’ll stay. By the way, there’s just something that’s feels naughty about buying one way tickets…….out of the country! I already feel a sense of satisfaction even if we don’t go anywhere. Most of our friends are supportive and think it’s a cool idea, others are skeptical and our kids are saying “you’re doing what?”. Somehow, it just feels right.

Snorkeling Mexico Rocks and My First Lobster of the Season At Casa Picasso
Yesterday was another gorgeous day. Breezy (quite breezy) and just all out sun. It was also day 4 of the San Pedro Lobsterfest. Things to do for sure so let’s get moving. My friends from Imagine Tours had friends from the states in town and we were all headed up to North Ambergris Caye for a bit of snorkeling and perhaps some lunch. I packed my bag… and applied some serious sunblock. SPF 15 to 55, creams and sprays, all depending on the body part. After a few years down here and countless idiot burns (you know the ones where you have a strip across your back or a hand print on your leg), I think I have the formula right.

Workplace Rights For Belizeans In The US
The Honorable Roland York, The Consulate General of Belize and Ruben Rosalez, Regional Administrator from the U.S Department of Labor, Wage, and Hours division (WHD) has come together today to sign a memorandum of understanding to bring awareness of workplace laws and regulations applicable to Belizeans in the U.S. The objective of this agreement is to help Belizeans understand their workplace rights, in particularly with regard to violations of the minimum wage, working overtime and not being paid, child labor, record keeping and all laws establish under the Fair Labor Standards Act. Belizeans who have worked in the U.S and returned home and even deportees who worked and left the U.S being owed wages, can collect their back pay and benefits through this initiative.

1977 email between UK and Guatemala on the state of Belize

Belize Political Assessment
The Government of Belize (GOB) welcomes Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) although the investment climate has cooled over the past year. There is a number of disputes between U.S. and other foreign investors and various GOB agencies as well as new legislation that hampers the ability of investors to seek arbitration to resolve disputes. (DOS) The Belize Trade and Investment Development Service (BELTRAIDE) was established to serve as a one-stop-shop for export and investment assistance but bureaucratic red tape may still be encountered when seeking government fiscal incentives. (DOS) Government investment incentives include: Fiscal Incentives Act: Export Processing Zone Act: Commercial Free Zone Act: International Business Companies Act: Generally, Belize has no restrictions on the limits of foreign ownership and control of companies; however, there is a prerequisite that foreign investors obtain prior clearance from the Central Bank of Belize. In addition, there are a few investment incentives which show preference to Belizean-owned companies. (DOS)

Well AD is complaining about the scooters that are coming to the island to be rented out to tourist. At first thought we agreed that maybe it wasn’t a good idea, however after some talking, asking around, we are retracking that position. We agree that there needs to be rules, perhaps a release signed, maybe a lesson or two on use. Governors on them so they don’t go 45 miles an hour but maybe 15/20. With this and hopefully insurance for the owners insuring tourist riding. We see it as a good way to control traffic. Less golf carts blowing by each other, less congestion on the roads and maybe even less cars on the island. Could be a cute idea with people on scooters driving around the island. Not on the beaches but the roads. To us we see it as a great way to lighten the roads! It is called progress! It’s called future!

International Sourcesizz

Atlantic Hurricane Outlook for the Remainder of June
There were no tropical cyclones anywhere in the world on Friday, and none of the reliable models for forecasting tropical cyclone genesis in the Atlantic (European, GFS, and UKMET) is predicting development over the coming five days. There is a tropical disturbance off the east coast of Florida that radar out of Melbourne, Florida shows some spin to. However, satellite loops show the area of heavy thunderstorms is very limited, and there is a lot of dry air interfering with thunderstorm development. Wind shear is a moderate 10 knots. In their 8 am EDT Friday Tropical Weather Outlook, NHC gave the disturbance 2-day and 5-day development odds of 10%. The disturbance will likely head northeast out to sea over the weekend. Hurricane Forecast for the Remainder of June: Vertical wind shear is predicted to be very high over most of the tropical Atlantic the remainder of June, reducing the odds of tropical storm formation. With the active thunderstorm area of the MJO predicted to remain over the Pacific Ocean the rest of June, this will favor dry, sinking air over the Atlantic, further discouraging tropical storms from forming. Sea surface temperatures (SSTs), which are close to average over the Caribbean (an anomaly of +0.1°F) and cooler than average over the Gulf of Mexico (an anomaly of -0.2°F) will do no favors for any potential June tropical storms that try to form. If development does occur in June, the most likely location would be off the east coast of Florida, between the Bahamas and Bermuda, where SSTs are slightly above average and wind shear will be lower. Storms that form in this region are typically only a threat to Bermuda.

Amazonian Bird Said to Be as Rare as a Unicorn Caught on Film
Two harpy eagles, jungle birds who are seldom seen and said to be as rare as unicorns, were recently photographed and filmed in the wild. The photographers captured very intimate moments between a mother feeding her chick in its nest; porcupine and sloth were on the menu. Plus, there’s a white and fluffy baby bird calling its mom for food — it’s really cute. As reported in Live Science, the harpy eagles were believed to be extinct in and around Belize. Yet, Belizean sightings in 2011 proved that the eagles still inhabited part of the Central American rain forests that they once piloted. The harpy eagle isn’t the run-of-the-mill raptor. The eagles can weigh up to 20 pounds and grow close to 40 inches (or, the average height of a sitting human 5-year-old). They are very heavy; the Association of Zoos and Aquariums call them the “heaviest of all bird species.” Their weight sits on their sharp 5-inch talons. Despite their impressive size and weight, the harpy eagle isn’t equipped to handle everything. Man-made trials proves especially difficult. The top of the food chain predators usually are in the most serious predicaments; we’ve already seen this in the case of the Gobi bear.

African, Caribbean and Pacific Group Announces Next Secretary General Will be From Caribbean
The next secretary general of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of countries for the period 2015-20 will come from the Caribbean region, the Suriname ministry of foreign affairs has announced. After some debate during the recently concluded ACP Council of Ministers’ meeting in Nairobi, Kenya, consensus was reached, and eventually the council decided that the next secretary general will come from the Caribbean, said Suriname’s minister of foreign affairs, Winston Lackin. Meanwhile, the ACP Secretariat in Brussels confirmed that the selection of the next secretary general will be finalized by the Council of Ministers in Suriname in November, before the eighth ACP summit to be held during the same period in Paramaribo.

This Is Officially The World Cup Of CONCACAF
CONCACAF is dominating the 2014 World Cup. Or, perhaps less hyperbolically, CONCACAF — the FIFA region that encompasses North America, Central America, and the Caribbean — is outperforming its traditionally low expectations at the 2014 World Cup. The region has long been more or less of a joke, even among American soccer fans. The United States and Mexico — relative afterthoughts compared to the top teams in Europe — are the superpowers. World Cup qualifying involves trips to places like Barbados and Belize, where the field are basically weed patches and only a handful of fans show up. But in Brazil, CONCACAF has come to play, and it’s not a fluke. The four teams — United States, Costa Rica, Mexico, and Honduras — are a combined 4-1-1 through Friday afternoon. Costa Rica is already qualified for the knockout stages with a 1-0 win over Italy, and they will likely finished above Italy, England, and Uruguay in their group.

Central America Infrastructure Report Q3 2014
There is a wide divergence of performance and opportunities across the various construction industry markets in Central America. With comparatively low levels of risk, we expect Panama and Costa Rica to continue to lead both in terms of industry value and real growth. With regards to the region's underperformers, Guatemala and El Salvador continue to report the lowest level of growth but we anticipate this to change over the medium term as there is significant potential in both markets for the development of transport infrastructure. We see high risks, small scale and limited growth opportunities across the region as a whole. A crucial factor underpinning our forecasts for infrastructure investments in future years is political risk.


Video: Jaguar Encounter, Belize Zoo, 3min.
Students having a jaguar encounter at the Belize Zoo on June 15, 2014

Video: Sugar Cane Field Fire, Belize, 2min.
Sugar cane field fire before harvest near San Lazaro, Belize, on June 19, 2014.

Video: Belize Adventure HKPK Adventures, 4min.
Some highlights of when, Hunter Yang, went on his trip to Belize.

Video: Powerball "Unchanged" 1, 1/2min.
You might recognize some faces in this commercial! Australian Powerball Lotto commerical mostly filmed in Belize!

Video: Powerball "Unchanged" 2, 1/2min.
The crew at Make-Belize Films, who created Kurse a di Ixtabai, have been busy lately. Their latest creation is a series of commercials for the Australian Powerball lottery that feature Belize. In the 2nd one, Xunantunich and Monkey Falls can both be seen. The market can be seen in the 1st:

Video: Belize-Snorkelen, 5min.

Video: Diving in San Pedro, Belize, 7min.
Highlights of the dive trip we took to Belize in June of 2014

Video: Snorkeling - Caye Caulker, Belize, 1min.
Quick little video of my snorkeling adventure in Caye Caulker, Belize. We went with the Raggamuffin Tour, highly recommend them.

Video: Chinese New Year, Belize City, Jan, 2014, 11min.
heck out the guy walk thru the fire crackers @ 1:45, 5:46, 7:15 and 8:15

Video: A Day at Placencia Beach, Belize, 3min.

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