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PM Barrow Responds Onto the Huang-Gibson and COLA Vs. Penner Situations
The Prime Minister also responded to today’s announcement by COLA that it was seeking private prosecution of Elvin Penner. Basically, he says that the organization can do as it pleases, though when we asked him if the resources of the State and in particular the files at the Immigration...

KTV Latino King and Taxi Driver’s Widow in Desperate Need for Forensic Help
Almost six months have passed since the reported death of KTV Latino King and taxi driver Daniel Aguirre. As you might remember, Aguirre’s vehicle was found engulfed in flames in an isolated area miles off the George Price Highway. Inside the vehicle, the charred remains of what was widely...

Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital Gets Much Needed Improvements
2013 was a year to forget for the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, chiefly because of the bacterial outbreak at the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) which claimed 8 lives of new born babies. Since then, money has poured in, both for renovations to the current unit and a new...

35 More Cemented Streets for Belize City, Due Yearend, Says Mayor
This afternoon the Belize City Council announced plans to concrete an additional 35 streets, most major arteries, in its second phase of a city-wide infrastructure project. The first phase, funded with a $20 million municipal bond floated by the Council, saw 102 streets concreted, some of which are in...

Belize Territorial Volunteers Call on Women for Duty
This coming month of March is women’s month. The Belize Territorial Volunteers (BTV) are heading back to the Belize-Guatemala borderline and leader Wil Maheia explains what they are doing to honor the country and its women. Mr. Wil Maheia- Belize Territorial Volunteer “As you know that March is woman’s...

Father of Goal Scorer McCauley Responds Proudly About his Son
Player Deon McCaley has scored his way into the big leagues. He signed a contract with professional football club Atlantic Silverbacks in Atlanta Georgia officially making him the first Belizean to ever sign a professional football club in the U.S.A. He is scheduled to start training on Saturday, March...

American National Fined for Illegal Overstaying in Belize
A 42 year old American from the U.S. state of Indiana overstayed his welcome by about a week. But he has a good reason: he told a court this morning that six hours is just too short a time to get to know the Jewel. Bryan Rusk, a diesel...

Reputation Week Seeking Nominees for Recognitions
We are almost at the end of Reputation Week. It’s a first time initiative of the public relations firm Nauta Vero, chaired by Mr. Niall Gillett. Mr. Gillett told us today about his initiative to find five Belizean companies and individuals of whom the best can be said. Mr....

Belize Active Youth Launches Drug Awareness Campaign at Independence Park
It was a relatively hot day in the City of Belmopan, nevertheless, that was no deterrent for dozens of High School youths who gathered at the Independence Park for BAY’s youth rally drug awareness campaign. President of Belmopan Active Youths Anna Banner Guy told about the day’s event. Ms....

“Thousand Men Rally” to Hit the National Assembly Steps
The Thousand Men Rally is prepared to hit the National Assembly Steps tomorrow, Friday from 6:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m., Men from all walks of life are invited to partake in this spiritual building event that will see key presenters like Louis Wade Jr., Pastor Scott Stirm, and other...

The Guardian

Men and Women at Work
Hundreds of Belize City residents will have the opportunity to earn some money over the next 12 months as Cisco Construction Limited executes an important feature of Government’s Southside Rejuvenation Project - the paving of Central American Boulevard. Through an agreement with OPEC, the Government of Belize will spend over $4.7 million on the concreting of Central American Boulevard from Belcan Bridge to its intersection with Caesar Ridge Road. Those who bid for the contract were mindful of Government’s special emphasis on making the project as labour intensive as possible in order to create the maximum amount of employment opportunities. Cisco Construction Limited submitted the most favourable bid and was awarded the contract. The first phase of the project started on Monday, February 17th, with the trenching of the section of the street from Belcan Bridge to Mahogany Street. It is a job that with heavy machines would require 5 men to complete; however, almost 30 men are working in that area with pickaxes and shovels. The men are trenching the side of the street for the utility companies to get in and adjust their lines for the concreting of the street. The second section being trenched is from the roundabout junction with George Price Highway to Iguana Street.

Fishermen fish oversized lobsters
The fisheries department issued a release on Wednesday in which it advises fisher folk that the closed season for the spiny lobster runs from February 15th to June 14th every year. During the closed season no one is allowed to fish for the crustacean. Persons who have traps are also advised to remove their traps from the sea bed during the closed season, those found in the sea will be confiscated and destroyed by the fisheries department. Currently the department is conducting an inventory of lobster traps which will run until March 7th of this year. While these are some of the measures taken to ensure that the Spiny lobster is not taken from the waters out of season, there are measures to ensure the continuity of the specie in Belizean waters. And these measures have landed three fishermen in trouble with the fisheries authorities. On December 18th they were found with 68 lobsters inside the Glovers Reef Marine Reserve inside what is considered the conservation zone where no type of fishing activity is allowed. What the fisheries officers found is next to amazing as the catch contained Spiny lobsters which were as big as 3 feet in height and their tails weighed as much as 2 pounds. The normal catch for lobster include tails that range in weight from 7 to 9 ounces.

Free Zone Heist nets over a million pesos
Corozal Police are investigating a robbery in the Commercial Free Zone in which the thieves managed to rob a businessman of $208,333.33 in Belizean currency. 48 year-old Ricardo Villasenor, a Mexican businessman told police that on Monday, February 24, at around 9:30 a.m., he was leaving the back exit of his store to get into his vehicle, which was parked on the compound of his business place, North American Store. That’s when 2 men ambushed him at knifepoint and ordered him to hand over money bags which were inside the trunk of his car. Fearing for his life, he complied with their requests, and handed over 2 plastic bags which contained 1.25 million pesos, or $208,000 Bze. Currency. The men then shoved him in the trunk, after which, he was robbed an additional 800 pesos, or $133 Belize, and his cellular phone.

Economic Growth Stunted by Challenges in Agricultural Sector
In 2013 the economy of Belize grew by 0.7 percent, according to the initial estimates from the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB). 0.7 percent is significantly lower than the 4 percent growth in 2012 and even the 2.5 percent growth projected for 2013. The disappointing growth rate was a direct result of the significant decrease in production of citrus and sugarcane products. The citrus and sugar industries were injured by both natural and manmade disasters in 2013. However, the shortfall in the agriculture sector was offset by the growth in aquaculture with the rebound of shrimp exports. A second consecutive year of double digit growth in construction also acted as a boost to the economy as well as a record number of overnight tourist arrivals. In 2013, production in fishing increased by 28 percent. Glen Avilez, Director General of SIB, says this was due in large part to the resumption of operations at the Belize Aquaculture Limited’s shrimp farm after nearly two years of closure. According to SIB, in 2013 farm shrimp grew by 81 percent to $51.6 million. Avilez says the construction sector was the second largest contributor to the economy’s performance with a growth of 16 percent. He attributes this growth to “a significant boost to public infrastructure projects such as those being carried out by the Belize City Council and Belize Municipal Development Project”. Tourist arrivals increased by 6 percent in 2013. There were a record number of overnight arrivals with over 294,000 foreigners spending at least one night in Belize. This increase in overnight tourist arrivals resulted in a 4 percent increase in hotels and restaurants services. One of the positives from the prolonged period of rain in 2013 was a 7 percent increase in electricity production. Government services also increased by 6 percent.

Cayo North coming back to the UDP
The Cayo North Constituency has a new Standard Bearer for the United Democratic Party. On Sunday February 23rd 2,051 voters came out to the CET in San Ignacio and from 10 in the morning to 5 in the evening they voted to have a new Standard Bearer. At the end of the convention Omar Figueroa had received 1,383 votes besting his competitor Jorge David Tesecum who received 648 votes. There were 20 spoilt ballots. Immediately after counting and tallying the announcement was made public to a group of anxious party supporters who had gathered at the gate of the CET. Addressing the crowd was Alberto August, Party Chairman, who indicated that this had been one of the largest conventions the division had ever seen. He then went on to administer the oath of allegiance to Figueroa after which Tesecum spoke to the UDP faithful in the constituency.

BTB & Industry Partners Give Couple A Belizean Honeymoon
The couple’s positivity in the face of such a difficult time in their lives, coupled with the acts of thoughtfulness and kindness demonstrated by Precinct II, really moved us and we created a nine day itinerary after we received overwhelming support from our industry partners. On Friday, February 21st, Mr. & Mrs. Flowers departed for the much needed break which takes them to the destinations of Placencia, San Ignacio and San Pedro. The pair is set to experience the warmth of our Belizean hospitality and the indescribable beauty of our country through the best of what Belize has to offer in attractions, food, art, transportation and accommodation. The Belize Tourism Board extends a sincere thank-you and acknowledges all the people who made this initiative a success. We want to recognize Tropic Air, Robert’s Grove, Tutti Frutti, The Art Affair Gallery, Laru Beya, Splash Dive Center, Maya Beach Bistro, Barefoot Services, Rum Fish Y Vino, Wendy’s Creole Restaurant, The Lodge at Chaa Creek, Yute Expeditions, Rolson’s Cosina Y Cantina, San Ignacio Resort Hotel, Hode’s Place, Boaz Golf Cart Rental, Belize Pro Diving, Caprice Restaurant, El Divino, Victoria House, Elvi’s Kitchen, Caramba’s, and Seaduced. Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Garifuna Celebration of Our Founding Fathers
This thanks giving event is going to be a mini Dugu known to Garinagu as Chugu. During the ceremony the convergence of the Garifuna communities of Guatemala, Honduras and Belize will take place in a Mass of thanksgiving on the 28th and Mali drumming on the 27th and 28th along with Offerings of song and food to the ancestors. We give thanks to Joseph Chattoyer,his chief wife Barrouda, his daughter Gulisi, Elejo Veni, Marco Sanchez Diaz (the founder of Livingston Guatemala, Thomas Vincent Ramos the Garifuna Settlement Day founder of Belize, Juan Francisco Bulnes (Walumugu) the founder Of Honduras settlements and Santiago Avilez. This event is also a process of the healing of our nation as we believe that our ancestors still play a vital role in our daily lives. All are invited.

Deon McCaulay plays professional Football in Atlanta
“It feels very good to be here in Atlanta, and I’m excited to play in the U.S. I want to thank the Silverbacks organization for giving me the opportunity to come here and represent their team,” McCaulay said. “I’ve arrived in Atlanta with a good level of fitness, and my expectations are to come here and help the team win championships. I always try to succeed in everything that I do, so I hope that I can score some goals and help the team win.” Before the 2013 Gold Cup, McCaulay spent time training with the Portland Timbers of Major League Soccer during their preseason camp. The prolific forward’s move to the Silverbacks marks the first time he will play professionally in the U.S. McCaulay arrived in Atlanta on Sunday, and he will begin training with his teammates when the Silverbacks’ preseason begins this Saturday.

I Have a Dream for Belize
The historic and poignant “I Have a Dream” speech by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. beckons all Belizeans to enact the change we deserve. We have been called to build, to uplift, and to drive towards social, political and national development. The national psyche can no longer rest on complacency and mere reaction. We are now pressed to be proactive in our approach in the realization of all our endeavors. I have a dream that Belize will be the country most recognized for its understanding of the spirit of community. My dream for Belize includes using our hands and hearts to appreciate the rich, aesthetic beauty that we have cherished for so many decades. The beauty I speak of lies in the canopies of the Chiquibul Forest, the majestic Barrier Reef and in communities where we leave our doors unlocked and shared rice and beans with our neighbors and the occasional stranger.

Measurement
Measurement by itself has little value. It is only when it is teamed up with evaluation on defined indicators that it becomes a powerful tool to measure your action or intervention. A simple example can illustrate this truth. Imagine that you have a table with a broken leg and you decide to fix it. You make your measurements, cut the lumber and fix it into place. However, no matter how precise your measurement it is of no use if you do not evaluate whether it does the job once you have finished. To evaluate the situation you need to know the indicators that you will use to determine whether you have been successful. In this case the indicators might be that the table top is horizontal and the table does not wobble. If one or more of the indicators are not fulfilled then your intervention has failed. Even if the table is now stable and flat you still need to determine whether you could have accomplished your goal spending less time and money. Maybe a thinner piece of lumber or one made of a cheaper wood would have done the job just as well at a lower cost. As you can see the ideas behind the new science of monitoring and evaluation are pretty obvious, even simple-minded and have been in use in the physical sciences and in business from the very beginning of these disciplines. We cannot imagine scientists publishing their raw measurement data without explaining what they were trying to find and evaluating whether or not their results prove their hypothesis. No business person of any sense would authorize a marketing campaign without knowing what results the investment might bring and evaluating whether it had been successful when it was completed. This evaluation would include a detailed cost analysis to determine if profits had improved by more than the cost of the campaign.

Central Christian girls and boys remain undefeated in primary schools softball competition
The Belize City Primary Schools Softball Competition continues at Rogers Stadium with a number of games on the schedule. On Tuesday February 25, in the girls’ competition, Central Christian School continued on its winning path when it won handily over St. Martin De Porres School by the score of 20-1. The winning pitcher was Hannah Usher and the losing pitcher was Melanie Smith. On Monday February 24, in the girls game played, St. Luke Methodist defeated St. John Vianney by the score of10-4. The winning pitcher was Destiny Rudon and the losing pitcher was Camryn Hinds. In the boys’ game, St. Luke Methodist won over Buttonwood Bay Nazarene by the score of 9-5. The winning pitcher was Avery Rudon and the losing pitcher was Mark Estell.

San Pedro Tiger Sharks rebounds after an unexpected loss
The Elite Basketball League third week of competition continued over the last weekend with four games across the country. On Saturday February 22, 2014, three games were played at various facilities in the district towns. At the San Pedro High School, the host team the San Pedro Tiger Sharks rebounded with an impressive victory over the Corozal Heats by the score of 79-54 after losing the week before to the Toledo Diplomats at the PG Sports Complex. The top scorers for the San Pedro Tiger Sharks were Winston Pratt with 20 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists and 3 steals, Ashton Edwards with 18 points, 1 assist and 3 steals and Darwin Leslie with 14 points, 4 rebounds, 1 assist and 1 steal. For the visiting Corozal Heats, their top scorers were Jason Daly with 11 points, 2 rebounds and 3 assists, Geovannie Lennan with 10 points, 7 rebounds, 1 assist and 5 steals, and Jason Grant with 10 points, 13 rebounds and 1 steal.

Nazarene High School continues on winning path in high school softball
The Central Region Secondary Schools Softball Competition continues at Rogers Stadium in Belize City. On Tuesday February 25, in the scheduled male game between St. John’s College and Anglican Cathedral College, SJC won over ACC via the default route. On Monday February 24, in the female competition Gwen Lizarraga High School defeated Wesley College by the score of 10-0. The winning pitcher was Ashley Lucas and the losing pitcher was Brianna Meighan. The competition then continued on Saturday February 22, with a number of games in both the female and male competitions. In the first female game of the day, Nazarene High School won over Pallotti High School via the default route. In game two played, Ladyville Technical High School defeated Wesley College by the score of 12-2. The winning pitcher was Amber Wade and the losing pitcher was Brianna Meighan.

MnM Steelers Inter-District Football champions
The Football Federation of Belize 2013 Inter-District competition finally came to an end on Sunday February 23 at the FFB Stadium in Belmopan. In the second and final game in the championship series, MnM Steelers of Independence Village routed the Roaring Creek United by the score of 2-1. The visiting MnM Steelers were able to get on the scoreboard first when Rollin Burgess scored the 1st of his 2 goals in the 39th minute of play for a 1-0 lead. The lead was further extended when Rollin Burgess scored his 2nd and final goal of the game in the 48th minute of play for a 2-0 lead. It was well into the second half of the game that the home team Roaring Creek United was able to score its only goal of the game when Kenroy Williams scored in the 78th minute of play to cut the deficit into half. However, the defence of the MnM Steelers were able to keep the Roaring Creek United offence from scoring any more goals in the game to preserve the victory and the Inter-District title.

Football Federation of Belize calls female footballers to training camp
In preparation for the Women’s UNCAF Qualifier which will be held in Guatemala from May 19 – 25, 2014 for the Women’s CONCACAF Gold Cup in Cancun, Mexico, the Football Federation of Belize is calling the following players to attend a meeting at 10:00am and a training session in the afternoon on Saturday March 1, 2014 at the Football Federation of Belize Training Facility in Belmopan. An invitation is also extended to any other player wishing to attend the meeting and training.

Cycling Federation of Belize to holds Test races
The Cycling Federation of Belize would like to inform of the upcoming events scheduled for this Saturday and Sunday, as we continue our Test Race Events. Please note that both events carry a registration fee of $10.00. Kindly confirm your participation no later than midday, Friday, February 28th. Any confirmation there after carries the late fee registration of $20.00 per person.| Saturday, March 1st - Individual Time Trial on the Boom Road This event will be held on the Boom Road starting at CDS Service Station at 6:30 a.m. Open Elite/U23/Masters will do 15 miles; while the Female/Junior/Youth will do 9 miles.

Joel Borland captures first Test Race
test race.jpg - 43.80 KbThe Cycling Federation of Belize held the first in a series of Test Race Events on Sunday February 23, 2014. The event featured a Hill Circuit Race from Belmopan to approx. 1/2 mile from Cave Branch Bridge and return for three and a half laps, with a return climb to finish on top of the Hill in Armenia Village, for the Elite and two and a half laps with a return climb to finish at the same spot. Elite: 1st. Joel Borland of BTL Cycling Team 2nd. Ron Vasquez of Western Spirit 3rd. Peter Choto of Western Spirit 4th. Giovanni Lovell of BTL Cycling Team 5th. Byron Pope of Benny’s Megabytes 6th. Marlon Castillo of BTL Cycling Team 7th. Giovanni Choto of Western Spirit 8th Herman 'Hijo' Requena of SMART Cycling Team 9th. Quinton Hamilton of SMART Cycling Team 10th. Gregory Lovell of BTL Cycling Team

The Return of Street Games
Under the auspices of the Belize City Council and UDP representative for the Lake Independence constituency, Hon. Mark King, the once very popular street games are back in Belize City. On Sunday February 23rd the most recent installment of the Street Games were conducted on Mahogany Street at its intersection with Periwinkle Street. Teams signed up with the Belize City Council to participate in football and basketball competitions at the end of which the Yabra Sporting Club took home the 1st and 2nd place in football. In basketball Unruley Ballers took 1st place and Sey Sorry took home second place. Hon. Mark King and Councilor Philip Willoughby who's brainchild the Street Games was originally, both indicated that they were more than happy with the outcome of this first try. Hon. King stated that there will be many more such sporting activities taking place in his constituency especially because it creates a community spirit which has been lacking in the area. He added that he will do his best to also upgrade existing sporting facilities to ensure that sports return to Lake-I. Already significant investments have been made in the basketball court behind the Charles Bartlett Hyde building, "but there is much more to be done," stated King.

Town Council holds meeting in San Ignacio Town
A public meeting to take account of the developments within the Twin Towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena was held on Wednesday night of last week. Mayor John August joined Council members to interact with members of the public and share some good news. In his financial report, Mayor John August informed that the revenue for January 2014 was $493,219.13, plus $80,236.18 brought forward from December 2013. He reported that the expenses were $482,525.13, bringing to a positive balance of $90,930.18 to the end of January 2014. (Government’s subvention and grant to the Town Council for last month stood at $51,780.00) The Mayor also announced that within the next four months the various stadiums within the Twin Towns will be the upgraded. This is thanks to five million dollars that Government has apportioned to improve the sporting facilities in both Santa Elena and San Ignacio. Some 1.5 to 1.8 million dollars will be going towards the improvement of the Victor Galvez Stadium and $600,000.00 to $700,000.00 towards the Falcon Field in San Ignacio.

Simulation Exercise for Avian Influenza held in Toledo
A communication center was set up Wednesday of this week at the Community Center in Big Falls in the Toledo District to act as a coordinating center on a hypothetical outbreak of the Avian Influenza Virus. At the center of the activity is Dr. Miguel Figueroa, Director of the Food Safety Department within the Belize Agricultural Health Authority. In this simulation exercise, the participants include the Ministry of Agriculture, the Ministry of Health, Police as well as partners from the Belize Poultry Association, who have been reacting to an imagined outbreak of Avian Influenza.

No More Pillaging for the PUP
The People's United Party is in so much trouble that they realize that if things continue in the manner in which it is going, their party will not be able to survive for another term. This is the first time that they have had to endure two consecutive terms out of office and they cannot survive. A third consecutive term, which is what the UDP is looking at, would be a disaster for the PUP. Faced with their inability to fill their pockets at the expense of government coffers they have strategically been trying to undermine the government. Readers will recall that very early after the elections they attempted to have elected representatives, Hon. Mark King, Hon. Herman Longsworth and Hon. Elvin Penner removed and new elections called for these seats. Needless to say those failed. What readers will also recall is that being in government to the PUP is literally a bread and butter issue. They eat at the trough every single time they have been in office and their inability to do so now is causing them belly-ache.

What to do when making a cellular phone purchase
Occasionally we purchase products that are defective and then go back to the store owner for redress but none is to come our way. This is especially troubling with cellular phones. These devices have become the center piece of our lives not only to communicate but to conduct bank transactions and to log into our documents in the ‘Cloud’. It is estimated that in 2010 some 5.4 billion people owned a mobile phone; in 2011 it was 6 billion and in 2013 that figure rose to 6.8 billion. But what can we do with a phone that we have invested our hard earned money on and two weeks later we discover that it is faulty? It is a dilemma faced by many around the World and for this reason March 15, 2014 will be celebrated as “Fix Our Phone Rights!” under World Consumer Rights Day. As Belize prepares to observe World Consumer Rights Day, workers from the Belize Bureau of Standards BBS launched their first mobile booth at the Cayo Welcome Center on Friday of last week. Samantha Budna Banner, who is a Consumer Protection and Education Officer, was along with other members of her team educating members of the public on their rights, particularly as it relates to purchasing a cellular phone. The BBS team also took the opportunity to conduct a survey to examine customer trends when purchasing the ubiquitous cell phone.

PUP continues on Mandamus hunt
The People's United Party was back in court again on Wednesday February 26th as they pursued their effort to have the commissioner of police lay charges against Hon. Elvin Penner. In the Supreme Court Justice, Chief Justice Kenneth Benjamin decided that he will hear the case by the Opposition Leader, Francis Fonseca, as to why the court should force the Commissioner of Police to investigate Elvin Penner's role in the immigration matter. The PUP had earlier written sto the Compol, Allan Whylie demanding that he direct an investigation against Penner. Since they have neither the moral or legal authority to do so, the letter fell on blind eyes and now, in a bout of good conscience, the PUP want the matter taken to court filing for a Writ of Mandamus.

Barry Lee Wade Busted with Over 8 Pounds of Weed
Barry Lee Wade, 34, and his common-law-wife, 37-year-old Elizabeth Ann Linarez, were busted over the weekend with 3.9 kilograms of marijuana. The Gang Suppression Unit executed a raid of the couple’s home on Mahogany Street Extension at about 4:30 on Saturday afternoon, February 22nd. According to reports, when Jonas Velasquez opened the door, police proceeded to search the house and found a bag in one of the bedrooms which contained six parcels. Another bag in the room contained ten parcels. Officers checked the parcels and found that they contained marijuana. They then went to get the owner of the house, Barry Lee Wade, and escorted him to the house. Wade told the officers that Velasquez had nothing to do with the marijuana and that he did not live there. Velasquez was allowed to leave. As officers were concluding the search, Wade’s common-law-wife, Linarez, showed up. Since she lived at the house, Linarez was also arrested and taken to the police station. The marijuana was weighed in their presence. The six parcels amounted to 2.7 kilograms and the ten parcels amounted to 1.2 kilograms for a total of 3.9 kilograms marijuana, or 8.6 pounds.

Escaped prisoner captured, one still at large
Sherman Rodney,22, escaped from police a few hours after Steel Bob jumped out of a moving vehicle also escaping police custody. Police say that an officer escorted him to the KHMH because he was complaining of severe pain to his left arm. When he was taken inside a room by a nurse, the officer waited outside, and when the nurse exited, he went in to check on Rodney. Rodney took the brief moments of no supervision to escape. After 3 days of searching, Rodney handed himself back into police custody, and he was charged with escaping from lawful authority. He was arraigned on Tuesday, February 25, before Magistrate Dale Cayetano, and when the prosecutor explained that Rodney was being investigated for a crime, bail was denied, and he was remanded into custody. Officers from the Criminal Investigation Branch immediately escorted him back to the police station after his arraignment.

Steven Palacio Remanded for 4 Rounds of 9 mm Ammo
Steven Palacio, 23, is in jail after he was allegedly busted with four live rounds of 9 mm ammunition on Saturday, February 22nd. Palacio was unrepresented when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Monday, February 24th, and pleaded not guilty to keeping ammunition without a license. Due to the nature of the offense, bail was not granted and Palacio was remanded to the Belize Central Prison.

Guatemalan Illegal Fisher Pleads Guilty to More Crimes
Guatemalan Georgina Maribel Mendez Aldana, 49, has been back and forth to court since she was busted on Monday morning, February 17th, with thousands of sea cucumbers. Last week she pleaded guilty to two counts of employing a person not in possession of a valid employment permit after she was caught with 52-year-old Hugo Rolando Orellana Salas and 22-year-old Cesar Gerardo Hichos Ramirez who claim she is their boss. Aldana paid a fine of over $2,000 for that offense. Aldana was immediately rearrested after paying the fine and charged along with her workers for engaging in commercial fishing without a valid Fisherman’s License; attempting to export fish without a valid fish exporter’s license and engaging in the fishing of Sea cucumbers without a special license. She pleaded not guilty in court before Magistrate Leslie Hamilton on Tuesday, February 18th, and the case was adjourned for Monday, February 24th, so she can gain legal representation.

Escaped prisoner has been re-captured in Cayo
Four days after having escaped from a moving Police van on the George Price Highway and near his home in Ontario Village in the Cayo District, Jarod Arthurs Lamb, better known as “Steel Bob” was recaptured by Police in Santa Elena Town at about 4:00 PM on Monday of this week. San Igancio Police had been informed on the whereabouts of Jarod Lamb and responded to his location, seeing him flee near the Santa Elena Football Field. Police then set chase and fired several shots at him, with one shot being directed two inches below his left knee. Jarod Lamb was then escorted to the San Ignacio Hospital and then to the Karl Heusner Hospital where he is now in stable condition and under Police guard. Jarod Lamb was being transported by Police from the Hattieville Prison to the San Ignacio Magistrate Court on Thursday of last week along with six other prisoners when he freed himself from his handcuffs and made a “loud bang” on exiting the back of the vehicle.

Anthony Hunter dies in Traffic accident
Police from Belize City Precinct 2 continue to invest the terrible traffic accident which claimed the life of 52 year old Anthony Hunter, the son of Former PUP Minister Freddy Hunter. The accident happened just after 8 a.m. on Saturday, February 22, at Mile 2 on the George Price (Western) Highway in front of the Foam Factory. Police found Hunter's lifeless body in the middle of the road and his trademark grey Kawasaki "Ninja" motorcycle in the drain. Across the road, they found a backhoe excavator, which belongs to Cisco Construction, with one of its wheels showing signs of impact. The driver of the backhoe, one of Cisco's employees, told police that Anthony Hunter slammed into his back wheel. They've been able to piece together that the driver was in transition between the intersection of the highway and Linda Vista Street, when Hunter came up on the backhoe, unable to avoid the crash. Investigators believe that the force of the collision was massive enough that it crushed his face and killed him almost instantly.

Protecting Belize’s Jaguars
Panthera’s CEO Dr. Alan Rabinowitz, Hon. Lisel Alamilla, the Minister of Forestry, Fisheries and Sustainable Development, and Dr. Wilma Wright, Interim President of the University of Belize, have signed a memorandum of understanding which will benefit the Jaguars living in Belize’s Central Corridor. The trilateral agreement represents pledges from all 3 parties to work together in implementing science-based conservation initiatives to conserve Belize’s jaguar populations and their natural habitats. It’s significant because according to scientists, they discovered a jaguar corridor in Belize, which showed the ideal relationships between the wildlife and human populations.

Lindbergh Clarke Gets 5 Years for Gun and Ammo Conviction
Lindbergh Alexander Clarke, 21, a laborer of a Central American Boulevard address, is in jail after he was convicted of three illegal weapons charges. At around 1 a.m. on July 14th, 2012, Clarke drew the attention of Gang Suppression Unit officers when he was seen riding a bicycle contrary to the flow of traffic on Central American Boulevard. The officers approached and tried to stop him but he sped off. The officers chased him and, according to detective constable Adrian Lopez, that was when they saw him throwing an object from his waist into a drain on Central American Boulevard. The officers eventually caught up with Clarke and took him back to the area where the object was thrown. Lopez placed a plastic over his hand and retrieved the object from the drain. It turned out to be a black Carl Walther brand 9 mm pistol with serial number 132218. It was loaded with 3 live rounds of bronze PMP brand 9 mm ammunitions and 2 live rounds of Winchester brand bronze .380 ammunitions. Clarke was arrested and charged with one count of keeping a firearm without a license and two counts of keeping ammunition without a license.

Another City Murder
The recent gang feud between George Street and Supal Street has led to the murder of 21 year-old Ryan Arnold and the shooting of a 15 year-old who now has a bullet lodged in his right leg. At around 5:30 p.m. on Tuesday, February 25, a group of 5 men were socializing on Armadillo Street when a gunman rode up on bicycle and fired gunshots at the group. When they realized what was happening, everyone tried to take cover but Arnold was shot in the back, while the 15 year-old was shot in the leg and grazed on the arm. The man, according to the victims, rode in the direction of Supal Street, and in the aftermath of the shooting, Arnold suffered extensive internal injuries from the bullets which struck him. Both he and the minor were immediately rushed to the KHMH, and after he held on for just over 12 hours, Arnold passed away.

Stephon Anderson charged with attempted murder
A man was shot in the city on Sunday February 23rd and police have charged 23-year-old Stephon Anderson, a resident of #7 Ebony Street in Belize City for the shooting. Anderson, who was unrepresented appeared in the Court room of Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith where he was read three indictable offenses including, one count of attempted murder, use of deadly means of harm and dangerous harm for the shooting of 21-year-old Andrew Augustine. In court, no plea was taken from Anderson and due to the nature of the offenses, he was denied bail and remanded to the Belize Central Prison until April 15, 2014.

Accused killer of Raymond Gentle’s fate hangs in the balance
Back in January 2011, Kraal Road Gang Leader, Raymond Gentle, aka “Killa” was executed at his workplace on Kraal Road in Belize City as he was in the company of men and co-workers building a wooden structure. Following the killing the trial without jury came to a close on February 26th before Justice Adolph Lucas. Appearing to answer to the charge of murder is 20-year-old Corwin Bennett, who will learn his fate on March 5, 2014. Bennett who could not afford an attorney was represented by legal aid attorney’s Baja Shoman and Michelle Trapp-Zuniga. At the end of the case, Judge Lucas heard addresses from both attorneys for the accused as well as from the DPP’s crown counsels in the matter, Shanice Lovell who was assisted by Porsha Staine.

I-phone finds Robber
Tanya McNab, a Belize City resident was robbed at knife point on December 30th, 2012 in the George Street area of Belize City. At the time a man placed a knife at her and stole her handbag valued at $2,000 which contained an I-phone along with personal items such as her wallet, credit card, passport and other identification cards. It was her cell phone however that led police to the robber and his subsequent arrest and conviction. After being robbed McNab used the phone’s tracking capability to let her know what the phone’s location was. That led police to an alley off Princess Margaret Drive and onto Gentle Avenue in the King’s Park Area. When police made checks in the area they found 23-year-old Ashton Grant in possession of NcNab’s I phone. On Tuesday February 25th Grants’ trial began before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. It took 2 hours to complete and at the end of his trial, Grant was found guilty of robbery and was sentenced to 10 years imprisonment since this is his second conviction for similar crimes.

Amandala

3 PEOPLE STILL MISSING
Three persons, reported missing, have not yet been found. They are Hilmar Cal, 15, of Libertad, who went missing on Thursday, January 31; Mamerto Castillo, 87, missing since February 13; and Conrad Jones, 64, a retired inspector of police, missing since September 13, 2012. Hilmar Ical left home in Libertad to sell homemade bread in Corozal Town, and has failed to return home since, and no one seems to know where he is. Ical is described as being of Mestizo descent, with brown complexion; he is about 5 feet tall, of medium built and weighs about 85 pounds. Ical is now missing for 27 days. Marmerto Castillo, also known as “Don Mito,” of Yo Creek Village, Orange Walk, was last seen 14 days ago by his family, at about 9:00 a.m. on Wednesday, February 13, when he left home to go for firewood in San Lazaro Village. To date, his whereabouts are unknown. Castillo was last seen wearing a light pink long-sleeved shirt and khaki long pants. The family said that Castillo has problems with his hearing, and is offering a reward of $400 for information leading to his successful recovery.

POLICE FIND 1,353 GRAMS OF WEED
Ladyville police on an anti-drug patrol in Ladyville found and confiscated 1,353 grams of weed, found in some bushes on Scissors Street. No one was in the area. The weed was taken to the Ladyville Police Station and deposited as found property. Police said that at about 8:00 Monday morning they went to the Scissors Street area and conducted searches for drugs, guns and ammunition. They found a black plastic bag hidden beside a patch of bushes in an open lot on the street. The bag was retrieved, and it contained twelve separate parcels that contained weed. The weed was taken to the Ladyville Police Station, where it was weighed and it amounted to 1,353 grams

Blogs

Fresh Baked Bread and Cinnamon Buns: San Pedro’s The Baker
Ambergris Caye’s “The Baker” has been open for about five years. With various locations and a handful of different owners, I hadn’t been much of a customer. And honestly? I hadn’t heard much about it around town. Without rave reviews, I was just going to stay away. Though I am no health nut, the last thing I wanted was to find myself alone on a Friday night with a fresh baked loaf of whole wheat bread, a stick of butter and my toaster oven. The guilt would be hard to bear. But over the past six months, I’ve seeing glorious pictures of pastries and treats on Facebook and heard friends working through the cinnamon bun guilt, their cinna-sins (sorry)…even setting up rules like “only one a week” or “I’m giving them up for Lent”. Time to get in there. I started with the VERY convenient coffee station. $2bzd cup of coffee. Make your own. To-go cups. AND it tastes good. San Pedro’s own Caye Coffee in fact.

OK, Hand up! Who Eats Sea Cucumber?
If you’ve done a fair amount of diving or snorkeling (and who amidst the turquoise beauty of Belize hasn’t?), you’ll have seen the innocuous-looking critters on the sea floor, and immediately understand how they got their name. They do look like cucumbers past their use-by date that have spent too much time on the sea floor. Other varieties are more distinctive, covered with squared spike type thingies that make them look, to us, anyway, kind of cool. Well, cool-ish. Let’s be honest – there’s nothing very striking about sea cucumbers. For most of us, that is… But read Jack London, Robert Louis Stevenson, James A Michener and those writers of the South Seas and you’ll come across them… Often known as trepang, bêche-de-mer or balate, they are highly prized in Asia, going for some $300 a pound in Chinese markets.

Homemade Ice Cream Sandwiches
Jada helps me out while I recover from a eye strain and a little bug and makes a semi-homemade ice cream sandwich. Although, she uses store bought ice cream, she does make the chocolate cookies from scratch. These sandwiches were so rich that I was able to share one with Jada an be totally satisfied.

Belize’s biggest beach party!
Join us for the biggest beach party in Belize!! Head out to Tom Owens for an overnight diving/snorkelling/swimming adventure on abeautiful remote private island. Then head up to Placencia for the most amazing beach party, Placencia Lobsterfest!! Eat some lobster and lionfish kebabs, enter competition,s drink rum and dance the night away on the beach!!

Mennonite Gurls A'ken Cook: Raspberry Creem Parfait
Febuwary is knowed as t'‘luv month’. N' keepin wit at theme…here is a tastee lil parfait at we enjoyet at a luncheon earli'r thishere month. Servet up n' wee Masen jars er mini-parfait glasses…it is t'purrfeck ‘afterthouite’ ta a lovelee meal. Chocolate Crumb Base: 1 cup oreo bakyun' crumbs 4 tablespoons meltid butt'r Creem Fillin: 1 cup whippyun' creem 1 tablespoon sugar 1 teespoon vanilla 4 oz. / 125 ml creem cheez 1/2 cup icyun' sugar (confectyuners sugar)

International Sources

Climate Change: Shifting the Debate to Geopolitics
Climate change, nearly by definition, is slow, moving at a pace that constrains policy debate and typically precludes it from being the most important geopolitical event of any day. However, a report released last night by the U.S. National Academy of Sciences and the United Kingdom's Royal Society -- building on a major Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change assessment released in September -- reflects a consensus in the scientific community that the world is changing in ways that could influence the actions of countries for decades to come. Though the issue of climate change remains politically controversial, the public scientific consensus makes the issue essentially geopolitical and warrants a focus on its possible economic and general policy implications. How then can we use the imperfect scientific tools available to anticipate the effects of a changing environment? Like all science, climate change research is in a constant state of evolution. Our understanding of how different aspects of climate interact is expanding, as is our ability to forecast future environmental behavior. Increased computing power increases modeling capacity. However, we are still limited by instrumentation and by our inability to measure and fully understand climate conditions. Scientific models used to predict the magnitude of climate change, as well as the effects climate change will have in various regions, are not completely reliable. Because there are so many variables involved in developing climate models, structural uncertainty is inevitable. Every equation output is used as an input somewhere else, exponentially increasing the effects of any mistake or incorrect assumption, and each iteration can breed new errors.

Tropic Air flights to Belize begin on Monday
Tropic Air, the largest and most experienced airline in Belize, will begin nonstop flights between Merida and Belize City on Monday March 3rd. The flights will operate three times a week, and will offer connections to destinations throughout Belize, as well as two cities in Guatemala and two in Honduras. TYT reporter Stewart Mandy will be joining the inaugural flight from Merida to Belize City, and will be reporting from San Pedro on Ambergris Caye next week. Have you been thinking of visiting Ambergris or any of Tropic Air’s other destinations? Getting there is about to get a whole lot easier. We’ll be telling you everything you need to know. Watch for Stewart’s reports soon!

In Hard-To-Believe Yarn, Fugitive Cuban Migrant With Long U.S. Criminal Record Is Finally Caught
But in the end, he got caught. Officials in Belize found him hiding in the bushes near the country’s border with Guatemala. Belizean immigration officials found the 33-year old Valdez outside the small border town of Benque Viejo, carrying an unmarked Cuban passport, a cellphone and over $2,000 in cash. Authorities in the small, English-speaking Central American country charged Valdez with illegal entry, arraigned him and charged him $2,000, but were unable to deport him to neighboring Guatemala because he did not have a stamp in his passport for that country.

Belize, Part I (Placencia)
Hi. I'm Brigid Gallagher. I'm a Chicago-based Photographer and Writer and this is my blog. Thanks for checking it out. I went to magical Belize with my beautiful wife for our honeymoon and it was pretty much the greatest ten days of our lives. My photos from the vacation should clarify why it was so difficult for us to get on the plane home. It was, hands down, the best vacation we've ever been on and we have Susan's (my wife's) maid of honor, Melissa Pugh (of Jet Set World Travel) to thank. Melissa planned the ENTIRE honeymoon for us and she is basically the greatest travel consultant and person out there so you should immediately book a vacation (because you know you need it) through her and fabulous Jet Set. I'll kick off my series of Belize posts (there will be four total) with a look around breathtaking Placencia. Enjoy! So, yeah, this was our home for five nights. Our little cottage on the sea at Turtle Inn (a Coppola Resort). It was heaven. We have nothing but amazing things to say about our stay at Turtle Inn - it's a spectacular place. The staff is wonderful as is the management. Actually, I might just go ahead and apply for a job there.

Sonia Marsh & Life in Belize
This week’s League of Expat Writer’s features Sonia Marsh. Some of you may have read my previous interview with Sonia where I discussed her “Freeways to Flipflops” book. This week, Sonia discusses how her family coped with food shopping as their year as an expat in Belize – and her account of a trip to the local orthodontist. In 2004, my family left our comfortable life in Orange County, California, to experience life as an expat in Belize, Central America. After two months of living in a hut, we decided to buy a house on the island of Ambergris Caye. There, we relied on our boat for transportation, including shopping for food. After running out of food every other day, I finally learned how to stock up gringo style. This was something I’d taken for granted in the U.S., and now I worried that my boys weren’t getting enough nutrition to stay healthy – especially Alec, who seemed to be growing skinnier by the day.

LA PERLA DEL CARIBE, AMBERGRIS CAYE, BELIZE
Strolling lazily down a tropical white sand beach, a soothing azure sea lapping rhythmically at your feet, a Caribbean breeze stealing away the cares of the world as it brushes gently across your face… This is La Perla Del Caribe Resort. This Luxury Ambergris Caye Resort is located on the north end of Ambergris Caye, the most popular vacation destination in Belize. La Perla Del Caribe captures the Caribbean ambiance of Belize in elegance and luxury. You can relax in the modern indoor-outdoor style of your private beach villa between trips to the pool and snorkeling, just offshore lies one of the top ten dive sites in the world, the pristine Belize coral reef. Or you can enjoy the vibrant life of the island, participate in village fiestas or sample local and international cuisine in the restaurants and clubs.

Wildly Civilized Paradise in Paradise
Cayo's Chaa Creek got another great article written about it, this time by Communities Digital News, and they are right about it being a paradise in paradise. The lodges activities, along with many of the main Cayo sites, are covered. "With more than 60 species of vegetables, herbs and fruit trees, the 30-acre Maya Organic Farm is a favorite tour for guests that can be done either by vehicle or on horseback. Even the swimming pool is environmentally designed with salt water that continuously circulates and re-cycles. Activities include a private 365 acre nature reserve, miles of well maintained nature trails, nature hikes, birding, horseback riding, mountain biking and canoeing on the Macal River which flows beside the property. There is even a rainforest medicine trail where naturalists showcase the importance of medicinal plants, their uses and the need for conservation."