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Last night's TV news on Channel 7, Channel 5 and CTV3
Also with the most recent Open Your Eyes, and the Dickie Bradley Specials

The San Pedro Sun

Gabriela "Gaba" Nu�ez places second in Mr. Vigor y Fuerza 2014
In only the second competition of her career, Gabriela "Gaba" Nu�ez has placed second in the Bikini Fitness division of the 9th Annual Mr. Vigor y Fuerza 2014. Held on Sunday, May 4th in Merida, Yucatan, Mexico, the competition saw participants from across the region join in commemorating the 29th anniversary of the Vigor and Strength Gym located in Merida. The competition included categories for children up to the age of 17 years, beginners, youth, novice, men's physique, modeling women's figure for veterans, and bikini fitness. Winners of the Mr. Vigor and Fuerza qualified for Mr. Mexico Youth and Veterans National Tournament to be held on May 16th and 18th in Mexico City. Winners in the female category will participate in an exclusive championship for women to be held in Mexico City on May 10th and 11th.

Team Legends are the Champions!
It was an exciting afternoon on Sunday, May 4th at the Honorable Louis Sylvester Football Arena as the San Pedro Sports Committee Football Tournament final games were played. After weeks of games, it was down to Team Southwind and Team Legends in the finals. Eager football fans came out to see the highly anticipated games, and they were not disappointed. The first game was actually to determine the third place team, Team Dorados or Team Caye Caulker. The team from our neighboring island village came out with all its might, showing no mercy as they scored a goal in the first minutes of the game. Dorados quickly evened the score, but that single goal did not matter in the face of Caye Caulker's four goals total. With a final score of 4-1, Caye Caulker was awarded the third place trophy and $500 cash.

11 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have reduced maternal mortality, new UN data show
A new United Nations report shows that 11 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean have made significant progress in reducing deaths from pregnancy-related causes since 1990. However no country in the region is on track to meet the Millennium Development Goal (MDG) of reducing maternal mortality 75% by 2015. The 11 countries that significantly reduced maternal mortality (MMR down 40% or more since 1990) are Barbados, Bolivia, Brazil, the Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Haiti, Honduras, Nicaragua, and Peru. Despite this progress, an estimated 9,300 women lost their lives in Latin America and the Caribbean due to pregnancy-related causes in 2013 (down from 17,000 maternal deaths in 1990). The new report, Trends in maternal mortality estimates 1990 to 2013, estimates changes in maternal mortality worldwide and by region and country. It was produced jointly by the World Health Organization

Ambergris Today

Bella Italia 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.

Kids Summer Camp at Basil Jones
Learn about our environment in a fun and interactive way! July 7 - August 1 Registration for Summer Camp is now underway. Applications can be picked up from the Ministry of Education office in San Pedro. Camp will include: Overnight stay, Reef Education, Swimming, Hiking, Bird watching, Arts & Crafts. Cost is $150/week. Some scholarship may be available. Choose the week or stay all four weeks. The camp is located in the north part of the island near Bacalar Chico and will be chaperoned by teachers and trained personnel. Ages 11 - 16 years. Register by May 15th. For Additional info please call Miriam Codd at 662-0858 or Mito Paz at 663-2865 or [email protected]

San Pedro Teams Top Mahahual Fishing Tournament
Two fishing teams from San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize, topped the 23rd annual Copa Gobernador 2014, Fishing Tournament that was held over the weekend in Mahahual, Mexico besting 57 other teams from five different Mexican states, USA and Belize. Fishing crew of the Real Challenge boat managed to secure the second place at the tournament while Team Amigos (Amigos del Mar) placed third, both taking home a new vehicle and trophy. Participants from San Pedro include Team Amigos, Lady Leslie, Real Challenge, Rojo Lara among others. Ambergris Today Congratulates both teams on their excellent performance.

Misc Belizean Sources

Belize Tourism Expo 2014
Betex, Belize's Tourism Expo, starts tomorrow, and ends Friday. Many Cayo businesses will be attending the BTIA organized event, which will, take place in Belize City. Cayo's Larry Waight wrote an article about BETEX for You can find out more at their website: "The Belize Tourism Expo is an initiative of the Belize Tourism Industry Association, Belize's leading national private sector tourism association. BTIA represents a unified voice, and advocates for issues that benefit its members. BTIA also influences tourism policy, legislation and marketing for the sustainable development of the industry and improved quality of the visitor experience. BETEX was first organized in 1996 and now takes place every two years, attracting approximately 300 - 350 local and international tourism professionals and press representatives."

Western Ballaz Take Down No Limit
The Western Ballaz travelled to Belize City to play the No Limit at the Bird's Isle court. The Western Ballaz won the match 63 - 77, sealing their 2nd place in the NEBL(photos on G+). They travel to PG this Saturday to play the Toledo Diplomats. They host the Belmopan Bandits on Friday, May 16th. Go Ballaz!

FISHING REPORT: Week of April 27 - May 3rd, 2014
Week Summary: It was great having Jason and Dane from the Crested Butte Fly Shop hosting a great group from Texas, 20 in all, and all had a blast! The wind was just relentless until very late in the week so it kept the permit and tarpon number in check.

Phase 2 Solar Panels Installed and working at Holy Cross!!
Thanks to you, our many donors, our Phase 2, second set of solar panels, have now been installed by Baker Renewable Energy (BRE, at Holy Cross Anglican School in San Mateo, Belize. This second set will produce peak 5KW of power generation -- doubling our capacity from 5KW to 10KW.This past week, two BRE technicians spent the week working at Holy Cross Anglican school to afix the new array on roofing sections above the kitchen and lower division classrooms. As shown in the attached picture, the new array features 10 250W panels that are angled toward the east, and 10 that are angled toward the west. This will even out the power distibution curve. Further, the roof-length is long enough that we can, up to a point, simply add-on additional panels without having to implement additional breaker equipment. Since each panel has its own microinverter, a problem with any one panel will not bring down the entire array.

WITH WARMER WEATHER COMES MOSQUITOS! WITH SUMMER APPROACHING I THOUGHT I'D SHARE THIS Have you noticed the Mosquitos are already out! Here is a homemade trap to help keep you and the kiddos from being a blood donor!!! HOMEMADE MOSQUITO TRAP: Items needed: 1 cup of water 1/4 cup of brown sugar 1 gram of yeast 1 2-liter bottle HOW: 1. Cut the plastic bottle in half. 2. Mix brown sugar with hot water. Let cool. When cold, pour in the bottom half of the bottle. 3. Add the yeast. No need to mix. It creates carbon dioxide, which attracts mosquitoes. 4. Place the funnel part, upside down, into the other half of the bottle, taping them together if desired. 5. Wrap the bottle with something black, leaving the top uncovered, and place it outside in an area away from your normal gathering area. (Mosquitoes are also drawn to the color black.) Change the solution every 2 weeks for continuous control.

Government by default
By Abdulmajeed K Nunez How can we allow Francis to become PM by default? No wonder the country is doing economic summersaults It's gonna be everyone's fault For failing to think outside the colonial vault Development is at a screeching halt The minute you sell you vote And take the load of sand and the blue note The citizenry eating five years worth of salt Because of the contract they made under strain It's youths committing all sorts of assaults The entire country is at fault

Medical SNCO: Helping others makes for happy heart
U.S. Air Force Master Sgt. Cassandra Glasco says it makes her heart happy whenever she's able to help other people. Helping people is essentially in her job description as a New Horizons Belize 2014 medical technician deployed from Nellis Air Force Base, Nev., in support of medical readiness training exercises, or MEDRETEs, in the Punta Gorda region in Belize. The 19-year senior NCO is spending the second year in a row on the New Horizons team, sharing her lessons learned from last year and also sharing her compassionate demeanor with Belizeans lining up to receive free medical care. New Horizons is a multi-faceted exercise geared toward providing mutual medical training and advancement opportunities for Belizean medical providers and their Canadian and U.S. military counterparts. "The difference I'm seeing this year is our reach has been a little further," Glasco recalled. "Last year, we stayed closer to the main cities for our MEDRETEs. This year, we are going out into the villages.

SBDC and DOE at Agric
The Small Business Development Center was at Agric, and they got some pictures of their clients' merchandise. The Department of the Environment had an information booth there too. "Proud clients of SBDCBelize"

Romain Virgo Unplugged Concert
Romain Virgo played after Agric at Barrio Fino, and Danny Chung got some wicked shots of the concert. Denise Castillo and Shannelly Sutherland also performed. More great pictures are coming.

Belmopan Sports Wednesday
The Bandits host the Verdes today at the Isidoro Beaton Stadium for the semifinals of the PLB Belikin Cup. The game starts at 7:30pm. The Belmopan Active Youth is having their basketball final at Hilltop Court, starting at 7:00pm. They'll have Above the Influence playing the Ball Hard Live Free.

BEL Reviews PUC's Initial Decision on Annual Review Proceeding
Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) is reviewing the Public Utilities Commission's (PUC) Initial Decision on the 2014 Annual Review Proceeding (ARP) for BEL. BEL is pleased that the PUC's Initial Decision also proposes a reduction in electricity rates, which amounts to a 1 per cent deviation from BEL's proposal. This decision allows BEL to fulfill its Mission to "provide reliable electricity at the lowest sustainable cost�" The Company will be meeting with its Management team to review the PUC's entire decision, including the five schedules approved, to determine the possible implications of the PUC's decision on BEL's Five Year Investment Plan. BEL will submit its written comment to the PUC by May 12, as required under the ARP.

The Belize Road Safety Initiative
Sometimes you've just got to "take the keys" to save lives. Young Ashley Silva lost her life last month in a tragic traffic accident. Her parents, Karim and Melonie, open up their ordeal, reminding us to "buckle up" and "think before you drink". Be sure to like The Belize Road Safety Initiative to listen their story and more. Learn about what the Government of Belize is doing to make Belize's roads safer for all!

Channel 7

Cayo CET Says UDP Chairman Alberto Wants to Quitar School Land
Tonight, the faculty, staff and student body the Center for Employment Training in San Ignacio are upset because a piece of their school land is being allocated for another public purpose. They say that they've been maintaining it for years with hopes of getting a title for it, but now the Chairman of the Belize Water Services, Alberto August - who is also the Chairman of the UDP Party - is hoping to make use of it for the relocation of the San Ignacio Fire Department. 7News went to the Cayo District to speak to the Vice Chairman of the CET Cayo Board of Governors - who is also a prominent PUP in the town. Here's how he explained it: Orlando "Landy" Espat - Vice-Chair, Board of Governors, CET Cayo "It was never maintained by the sports council and we at CET we use to maintain it. It came to a point we heard that this was going to be given away to some private individual and we calculated that it was for speculation purposes, so what we did was to move the board and then we held a meeting with Honorable Francis Fonseca, he was the Minister of Education under the People's United Party government.

Canadian Complains About Street Crime
A Canadian businessman who's been in Belize for just over a week says he might not make it to the end of his stay because he's been robbed twice in eight days. John Lorenz is stating at the Renaissance Towers in Belize City - and walks over to the Radisson Gym for his morning workout. But, twice, on the walk over, he claims two different pairs of men have tried to rob him. Lorenz told us about it today:.. John Lorenz, Canadian businessman "I've been here now since March 26th and I'll be staying for the foreseeable future unless I get killed in the meantime." Daniel Ortiz "Why do you feel that your life and safety is threaten in this country?" John Lorenz, Canadian businessman "I have lived in a lot of different countries in the world like Rio de Janeiro which is a dangerous city and I never felt unsafe there, but I feel very unsafe here in Belize City.

Accused Cop's Family Complains Of Setup
Last night, the big news was about police constable Yannick Wade, accused of masterminding the theft of 8 guns from the San Pedro police station. Wade is assigned to the san Pedro police station and called in sick on Thursday; the guns were discovered missing on Friday morning - but could have gone missing from Wednesday night. Wade is in jail tonight because two of the guns were found on the premises of his girlfriend's house - where he is known to reside. He faces multiple charges of theft for the eight missing guns and for keeping an unlicensed firearm. But while police seem to have a credible case against - what if it is all a setup? That's what his family is alleging. They spoke with Monica Bodden this afternoon:..

Coye Family Money, It's Complicated
Last night we told you about the temporary relief that the Coye family received when Justice Shona Griffith ordered that their bank accounts be unfrozen so that they could get full access to their money. Well, a few hours after that major victory, a Panamanian company, Internet Experts SA, through their local attorney, Lisa Shoman, managed to get an ex-parte injunction from the Supreme Court which restrained the Coyes from accessing their bank accounts. It's a significant setback for the the Coyes, and today, we got a chance to speak by phone with Lisa Shoman, about why her clients believe they had to block the family at the last minute: Lisa Shoman "This was an injunction, an ex parte hearing that was held before Madam Justice Young and it was an application which was made on the 8th of April. When my clients saw that the Coye's were making moves to try and have their funds release the clients instructed that we go ahead and try to get an injunction because going back to 2010 there has been a claim for 4, 8 million dollars by Internet Experts which was file in November of 2010 claiming that the monies were being held among other people were owe to them by Money Exchange International Ltd. Melanie Coye and the late Michael Coye. This was all part and parcel of business that Money Exchange International was doing Internet Experts."

US Child Predator Listed To Be In BZ
A flyer from the Florida Department of Law Enforcement says that a convicted child predator is residing in Belize. 63 year old Thomas Allen Bloom was convicted of sexual battery and child coercion in Brevard Florida in 1997. He is registered as a sexual predator in Florida and his given address on the flyer is Belize. Doesn't say where in Belize but the information was updated to reflect his Belize location in 2013. US sex offenders are not required to register in Belize.

Hon. Boots Says 254 Lots In Cotton Tree Was Private Land Acquisition
Last week Friday on the news - we interviewed the chairman and vice chairman of Cotton Tree Village - who explained why they were suing the government for giving away land within their village boundary. The villagers - bolstered by their PUP Area Representative Julius Espat - have retained attorney Andrew Marshalleck of Barrow and Company to challenge government for overstepping the local authority of the lots committee and the village council to decide who gets land in their village. The challenge comes out of a recently disclosed decision to give city residents 254 lots within Cotton Tree village. In the House of Representatives, it was alleged that all 254 lots are for Anthony Boots Martinez to distribute to his PORT LOYOLA constituents. Well, Martinez tells us that not quite how it works. The 254 lots are to be shared amongst the eight UDP Area Representatives in Belize City - who will get 30 each. Martinez adds that the lands were not national lands but were acquired from a Chinese landowner who owns a large tract in the area. He said his cabinet colleague Wilfred Sedi Elrington negotiated the purchase of the land for a public purpose. He says the landowner has twice that volume of land to sell and he would encourage the villagers, or their sponsor Julius Espat, to speak to him about purchasing it.

Bliss Center Far From Blissful With Broken AC and No $$$ To Fix It
The Bliss Center, it's one of the only air conditioned indoor facilities in the country, and while it should be the National Theater, in reality, it is used for everything from graduations to pre school variety shows to spiritual revivals to rock concerts. But anyone who's been in there recently will know that it's not so air conditioned anymore. NICH President Dianne Haylock confirmed to us today that only one of the three air conditioning units in the main theater is working. The facility has no windows, so when a performance is going, and there's even half of a full house, it starts getting very hot, very quickly. So why don't they just fix it? Well Haylock says it's not that simple. She says the Bliss Center has multiple chronic leakage problems due to poor construction when it was first built in the early two thousand's.

Robber Jailed
29 year-old Lincoln Sabido is at jail tonight after he was taken to court for robbing a Chinese Grocer a week ago. According to police, 37 year-old Desuo Li, the owner of Ying Li Shop, reported that on last week Tuesday, he was unloading items from his vehicle when 2 men entered his shop. One of the men pulled out a gun and the other a knife. At gunpoint, the men ordered him to lie on the ground, and that's when they robbed him of 2 cellular phones and 2 cartons of cigarettes and $700 cash. 2 customers were in the store at the same time and they were also robbed of money and possessions to a total value of $3,500.

BEL Pleased With PUC
BEL sent out a release today basically saying it's not fighting with the Public Utilities Commission - even though the regulator cut its proposed rate decrease by one percent. BEL says it is pleased that the PUC's Initial Decision also proposes a reduction in electricity rates. But will it object to that decision as BWSL recently did? A release says the Company will be meeting with its Management team to review the entire decision�to determine the possible implications�on BEL's Five Year Investment Plan. BEL will submit its written comment to the PUC by May 12th.

Why Was Water Interrupted For Hours?
Yesterday just after midday, approximately 12,000 households along the Northern Highway and in Belize City, which is the largest population centres in the country had no water for a little over 7 hours. It wasn't a planned service interruption; early in the morning they discovered complete break in one of their 24 inch main pipes on the highway, which required them to dig 10 feet into the ground to repair it. Today, the operations officer explained to us why they had no choice but to interrupt service after trying to ensure that those customers had water to use earlier that morning: Dave Pascascio - Operations Manager BWS "We woke up yesterday morning to a break in our main transmission line that supplies Belize City and so what we had to do was to manage the storage we had to last for the duration of the repairs, but cognizant of the fact that we were entering peak morning demand we did not reduce pressures until after peak until about 8am.

It Was A Very Good Year
Last night we told you thirty five thousand people had attended the national agriculture and trade show. Today the Ministry of Agriculture sent out day by day breakdowns: 16000 persons attended on Saturday and 18000 on Sunday. This is an increase over the previous year.

Cyclists To Puebla
Today 6 top male cyclists left Belize for Peubla Mexico to participate in the Pan American Cycling Road Championship form May 6th - 11th. They are Joel Borland and Giovanni Lovell in the Under 23 category, and Marlon Castillo, Greg Lovell, Ron Vasquez and Byron Pope in the elite category. They are accompanied by Head Coach, Perry Gibson and cycling Association official, Orson Butler. A total of 22 countries will be competing for 18 spots in the Pan American Games Toronto 2015. All the riders will be taking part in the Road Race, while Marlon Castillo, Byron Pope, Joel Borland and Giovanni Lovell will be participating in the Individual Time Trial.

Channel 5

Land dispute between BWS and CET in San Ignacio
There is growing discontent in San Ignacio tonight over one acre of land. The land is a portion of a five acre plot on which the Center for Employment Training [...]

PSU says Chief Pharmacist has been victimized by Health C.E.O.
The pharmacy dispute surrounding the appointment of a Minister's daughter remains on centre stage. Danini Contreras is the daughter of U.D.P. Minister Erwin Contreras. Contreras, who is not registered as [...]

Minister Godwin Hulse has 21 days to resolve Danini Contreras dispute
Those circumstances surrounding the Chief Pharmacist, and arising from the appointment of Danini Contreras, are among the issues which have been taken before the Minister of Labour. As promised, the [...]

Should Danini Contreras be removed as Director of Drug Inspectorate?
And our question for tonight is: Do you believe that Danini Contreras should be removed as Director of Drug Inspectorate? Send your comments and responses using your SMART phones to [...]

70 year old US businessman attacked twice in 8 days
A seventy year old US national currently in Belize on business is reporting that he has been attacked twice in eight days and in broad daylight. John Larencz has been [...]

Despite a court ruling, Coye family still has no access to their monies
On Monday, the Coye family enjoyed a short-lived legal victory when the Supreme Court ordered that their assets, amounting to millions of dollars in cash, be unfrozen.� The family's holdings [...]

Attorney speaks on injunction by Panamanian company
According to Bradley, the injunction was filed without their knowledge.   Via Phone: Richard 'Dickie' Bradley, Attorney for Coye Family "So, yesterday the judge gave an order.� Arguments were also [...]

G.O.B. versus Jamaican Gay Activist, Maurice Tomlinson; ruling to be delivered
The Caribbean Court of Justice convenes on Wednesday at its seat in Trinidad where it will hand down a decision in the case of Maurice Tomlinson versus the Government of [...]

Alrick and Brandon Smith acquitted of attempted murder
In March of 2013, police were reportedly engaged in a shootout with two alleged street figures. The incident involved Brandon Smith, aka Battery, a member of the PIV gang located [...]

Accused robber, Lincoln Sabido, is arraigned
A Belize City man from the Berries Street area of Saint Martin's De Porres is tonight on remand at the Belize Central Prison after he was accused of robbing a [...]

Barranco residents speak on oil exploration by US Capital Energy
The village of Barranco is a Garifuna community in the Toledo District; it is also one of five buffer communities on the outskirts of the Sarstoon Temash National Park where [...]

Caye Caulker without a doctor for months
One of the prime tourism islands has been without a doctor, in some instances for months, and the access to timely healthcare on Caye Caulker has become an issue for [...]

17 pharmacies, but only 2 pharmacists in San Pedro
The appointment of the new director of drug inspectorate has brought to the forefront a wide range of shortfalls within the system in respect of imported pharmaceuticals and persons practicing [...]

Belizean is killed in a helicopter accident in the U.S.
A Belizean who left Belize years ago has died in a helicopter crash at Fort Bliss, Texas. He is twenty-seven year old Sergeant Dwight Burn who lived in Barstow, California [...]

PricewaterhouseCoopers hosts financial literacy training
Financial Literacy Training�it not a topic that you often hear about, but it is an initiative that has been ongoing in Belize since 2008.� It targets teachers and students from [...]

Financial training culminates with multiple fairs at ITVET
The two-day training is interactive and includes presentations from various institutions. Deputy Chief Education Officer, Carol Babb, spoke of how the continuous work of the international organization has led up [...]


Shots Fired In The Louisiana Area, Bullet Graces Its Target
Residents living in the Louisiana Area of Orange Walk Town had a pretty good scare sometime around 9:00 last night when seven shots rang out in the area. Reports indicate that Victor Luna, who resides on Asuncion Street, was the target. According to our sources the individual was driving his vehicle on Macal River Street when a lone gun man fired seven shots at his direction. One of the bullets found its target but luckily Luna was only grazed on the right foot. Orange Walk Police visited the area and recovered 7 (9mm) expended shells. As for the gunman he was long gone by the time police arrived in the area. But police investigations have led to the detention of a 17 year old minor from Sittee River Street in Orange Walk Town.

Thirteen Year Old Goes Missing
A woman from the Village of Carmelita in the Orange Walk District is tonight desperately looking for her 13 year old daughter who exited the family's home at around 3:35am Monday to use the outdoor latrine and went missing. According to Angela Martinez, when she saw that her daughter, 13 year old Janet Elsie Daniela Martinez did not return inside, she called out for her but received no response. Checks were made in the area and to Martinez's surprise Janet was nowhere to be found. Martinez reported to police that when she checked Janet's room, she discovered a back pack containing her daughter's clothes and deodorant. Martinez suspects that her daughter left with a twenty three year old man from the same village.

Belizean Soldier Dies In Plane Crash
A Belizean who served with the 82nd Combat Aviation Brigade, 82nd Airborne Division, in the US Military has died after he and three other soldiers crashed during training exercise in New Mexico. International reports indicate that twenty seven year old Sergeant Dwight W. Burn was the crew chief aboard the CH-47 Chinook helicopter that went down during high altitude mountainous environment training in Fort Bliss' northern training area near Orogrande, New Mexico which is about 45 miles away from the Texas base. There were three other soldiers with Burn and are reportedly listed in stable condition. Their names and the extent of their injuries were not released. The CH-47 Chinook is a heavy-lift transport helicopter that was first used in Vietnam and today is used mainly to move troops, ammunition, large-caliber guns and equipment. The Brigade Burns was attached to and other units from across the military routinely train at Fort Bliss because of its vast desert and mountain terrain, according to the Military officials.

Electricity Rates To Reduce
And amidst all the bad news there is a bit of good news to share with you tonight especially in these hard economic times. Belizeans are to see a reduction in their electricity bill. That announcement was made yesterday by the Public Utilities Commission who has approved a minimal reduction in electricity rates, after carefully following the Annual Review Proceeding submitted by Belize Electricity Limited earlier this year. According to the PUC the rate presently stands at 0.04465 cents per kilowatt per hour. A 0.0165 cents reduction has been applied to the rate, cutting it down to what now consumers will be paying 0.04300 cents per kilowatt per hour. BEL had predicted a little over ninety three million, three hundred thousand in regulating assets value; however the Public Utilities Commission has reduced that figured by approximately seventeen million dollars. After carefully reviewing the annual proceedings by BEL, in a press briefing John Avery, Chairman at the Public Utilities Commission spoke about the corrections of the retroactive formula used from the period of July 1st 2012 to June 30th, 2013.

Muffles High School Receives Much Needed Financial Assistance
Muffles High School is much closer to achieving their dream of constructing their much needed auditorium. Today, during a short assembly at the school grounds, Chairman of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association Committee of Management, Alfredo Ortega, handed over a cheque of one thousand dollars to the Principal of the highs school Margie Johnston. The donation was made under the BSCFA / Fair Trade Educational Program. Alfredo Ortega - Chair Man BSCFA "It's a program that the farmers throughout the social program that they had approved when we had the meeting for the Orange Walk branch in which they approved for the different schools and at this time it was four schools and one charity group that were approved for this program and the farmers set aside five thousand dollars and it was divided equally so each school will be getting a thousand dollars and today it is Muffles Highs School that will be getting a thousand dollars for the auditorium program that they have."

Rossana Briceno To Receive Principal Of The Year 2014 Award
The Ministry of Education has selected a Principal of the Year for the year 2014 and the award is going to Rossana Briceno, School Principal at Saint Peter's Anglican School in Orange Walk Town. Briceno was chosen by the Ministry of Education and the Teacher Education Development Service for her years of service and dedication to her work at the Anglican school. Briceno was selected for the award following an extensive interview session with principals from primary schools across all six districts in the country. We will have more on this story in our subsequent newscast.

Classes Cancelled At Ranchito Government School
An insect infestation has prompted the Ministry of Education, the Ministry of Health and the Village Council at Ranchito Village in the Corozal District to take action at the Ranchito Government School. While officials at the Ministry of Education would not give an official comment on the matter, our news room has received several phone calls from concerned parents who have told us that classes have been cancelled for the week. Our News Team visited the school today in an effort to find out what the situation is. Dalila Ical reports. Dalila Ical - Reporting Classes have been cancelled for the week at the Ranchito Government School after parents and the school administration complained about serious insect and quite possibly rodent infestations at the school. While Officials at the Ministry of Education refused to give us an official comment, concerned parents have made calls to our news room saying that the situation is one that has been ongoing for a long time now.

58 Immigrants Including One Belizean Detained In Mexico
Over the past weeks Mexican Newspapers have been reporting on a number of cases that are being linked to human trafficking. First it was the alleged kidnapping of two 8 year old girls from Sabidos Quintana Roo, a small Mexican Community located along the banks of the Rio Hondo. The minors were allegedly lured to the river bank by a 13 year old girl who reportedly worked for a 19 year old Belizean man only identified as Ariel who lives in the community. Luckily the kidnapping was foiled after the parents of the minors went searching for them. The girls were allegedly to be brought to Belize. The second report was aired last night. As we mentioned a 16 year old minor reported to Mexican Authorities in Felipe Carrillo Puerto that for the past seven months she has been in a relationship with a man identified as Miguel Angel Manzanero Cocom and all that she wanted was to come back home to Belize since she was being verbally and physically abused by Cocom. We understand that authorities were investigating the matter. And now to tonight's report.

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Berry Street Residence Charged with Robbery
Twenty-nine year old Lincoln Sabido, a resident of Berry Street who the police believe was one of two persons involved in the robbery of a Chinese shop, was charged with one count of robbery and three counts of aggravated assault when he appeared today before the Chief Magistrate, Anne Marie Smith. Sabido pled not guilty to the charges. He was remanded into custody until August 8. The incident occurred around 10 a.m. on April 29. Thirty-seven year old Desuo Li, the owner of Ying Li Shop, located on Tibruce Street, reported to the police that he was discharging items from his vehicle to his shop when two persons, one of them armed with a gun and the other with a knife, accosted him and ordered him to lie on the ground. Li said he complied and the person with the knife entered the shop and stole 700 dollars, one laptop computer, two cellular phones and two cartons of cigarettes. Two persons, who were inside the shop, were held at gunpoint while the robbery was in progress. As a result, Sabido was charged with aggravated assault on Li, Garret Casimiro and Randy Smith.


American Fugitive Escapes from Belmopan Police and is Recaptured
American fugitive escapes legal custody and is recaptured in Roaring Creek. On Monday April 28th, we reported to you that an American Fugitive, identified as 52 year old Martin Chapman, wanted in the US for several criminal offences was apprehended in Roaring Creek village, Belmopan. One of the offences for...

High Speed Hijack on the George Price Highway; One Man Hospitalized
Tonight there are reports of a high-speed hijack that resulted in the arrest of three Belizean unemployed men of Teakettle Village. According to the Officer Commanding Belmopan Police, sometime around 10:20 pm last night, Bolivia National Ricardo Guzman, Chief Mechanic of Discoveries Oil Company, and a resident of teakettle...

Two Female Minors, Cousins, Go Missing at the Same Time
Two female minors, cousins to each other, reportedly went missing after leaving their homes towards to go visit their aunt. According to police reports at around 4:30 pm on Sunday, May 4th, 15 year old Jennilee Cassasola, Belizean student, of Zacaranda Street, Belize City and 14 year old Shanda...

Mentally Challenged Man is Missing- Believed to Have Wandered Off
A mentally challenged person has also been reported missing. 21 year old Clifton Clifford Willoughby, known also as "Grizzle", Belizean unemployed of Iguana Street Extension, Belize City has been mentally challenged for over three years. He is of brown complexion, slim built, about 6 ft. in height with a...

Man Charged for Robbery of Grocery Shop
29 year old Lincoln Sabido was arraigned in court today for the robbery of a Chinese shop last week Tuesday in Belize City. Owner of Ying Li Shop on Tibruce Street, 37 year old Desuo Li, was supervising the removal of items from his vehicle into the store around...

Suspicious Belizean Boy Allegedly Attempts to Kidnap Girls in Mexico
There are troubling reports of attempted kidnapping coming out of Mexican newspaper Por Esto. According to the reports made by Por Esto, the townspeople of Sabido, Quintana Roo captured a Belizean, identified only as 19 year old Ariel, who was trying to kidnap two 8 year old girls and...

Abducted Belizean Girl is Found in the Custody of a Mexican Man
In a completely opposite situation, a 16 year old Belizean girl was found in Carillo Puerto, Mexico in the company of a 53 year old Mexican man who had apparently kidnapped her and was abusing her. According to reports made by Por Esto Newspaper, at around 9:00 pm on...

Coye Family Assets Still Under Lockdown
At news time Monday, PLUS News was informed that contrary to the hopes of their attorneys, the surviving members of the Coye family were not allowed access to their bank accounts following an order lifting the freezing of the accounts by Justice Shona Griffith. This is because according to...

Evangelical Christian Leaders to Meet with the PM over Gender Policy
On Wednesday morning (May 7th) The National Executive Team from Evangelical Association of Churches under the Leadership of President Reverend Eugene Crawford intends to meet with the Prime Minister Dean Barrow. The team requested a meeting with him to discuss comments made by Ann-Marie Williams, Executive Director of the Women's Commission, to a...

Alliance of Leaders and Ministers Give GOB Deadline to Retract the Gender Policy
Another Christian organization is not as soft spoken in its rejection of the Revised National Gender Policy 2013 is the Alliance of Leaders and Ministers of Belize. The group formed by Patrick Menzies and currently led by President Alejandro Grande is a Belizean organization of Leaders and Ministers from diverse...

Comprehensive High School Teacher is Arrested; Suspected Carnal Knowledge
In last night's news cast we reported to you of allegations of an indecent nature made against a male teacher at the Belmopan Comprehensive High School. Reports were that the male teacher had had an affair with a 14 year old female student of Belmopan Comprehensive and had recently...

Electricity Rates to Go Down
The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has released its initial decision on the Annual Review Proceeding (ARP) for Belize Electricity Limited (BEL). If there are no objections before May 12, on July 1 the utility regulator will reduce the mean electricity rate to 43.47 cents per kilowatt-hour from 44.65 cents,...

New Officer in Command for the Belmopan Police
Sinquest Martinez previously an Assistant Superintendant has been working as the Officer Commanding the Belmopan Police for well over a year now. Recently however, he has been promoted to Superintendant and upholds a new role as the Staff Officer to the Head of National Crime Investigation Branch; taking his...


Fisheries employee beaten and robbed on Lakeview Street
An employee of the Fisheries Department on Princess Margaret Drive was beaten and robbed while sitting in his vehicle, which was parked at about 10:00 yesterday morning in front of a store in the high-crime area of Lakeview Street, on the south side of the city. The two robbers got away with the man's half-inch thick gold chain with a cross medal, designed with eight circular stones on it, hanging from his neck. The value of the chain has not yet been ascertained. The employee, who was the driver of the vehicle, had his window down because he was waiting for a beer that one of his friends had bought from the shop and was bringing to him. The victim reported that while sitting in his vehicle, a man approached, grabbed his chain from around his neck and tried to rip it off.

Clash in Sarstoon Temash!
Unity, solidarity and determination reigned, but tensions were high nonetheless within the confines of the majestic Sarstoon Temash National Park on this Labor Day holiday as a crowd of agitated Maya leaders, village chairmen, alcaldes and concerned villagers from the buffer communities in southern Belize gathered at the entranceway to US Capital Energy's A1 Drill Site - which is located about 10 meters inside the national park - demanding to be given access to what they reiterated was their communal lands. The Mayan communities were up in arms particularly because yesterday, despite prior court rulings declaring their rights to those same communal lands, Chief Forest Officer Wilber Sabido and National Parks Administrator, Hannah St. Luce-Martinez, signed a waiver on the expiration date of the oil exploration permit which grants the oil company entry into the protected area. A little over a hundred representatives from 38 Mayan communities in the vicinity decided to take a stand and make a statement today by setting foot on what they believe to be their lands in accordance with the court's rulings.

Bloody Friday on Antelope Street Extension
The seemingly never-ending gun violence has claimed the life of a man who, along with four others, was socializing in a yard in front of a house on Antelope Street Extension, in the city's Southside, at about 11:30 on Friday, May, 2, when two gunmen approached and fired at them. Julian Willoughby, 24, of Antelope Street Extension, was killed immediately due to multiple gunshots to the head and upper body. Police found him lying on the ground in pools of his blood. Another man, Chris Reyes, 21, had received gunshot wounds in the upper chest and arm; Francisco Rivas, 18, was shot in the left upper back; a male minor, 14, was shot in the left leg; and Philipa Ramirez, 20, was shot in the left jaw. Amandala was told that the bullet is currently lodged in her chest and she has been declared to be in a critical condition in the Intensive Care Unit of the KHMH.

Cop + stolen guns + ammo = jail!
A Belize City policeman, Yannick Wade, 27, who was posted in San Pedro, gave the Police Department another unneeded black eye just a week after another cop, special constable Jose Haylock, 36, was sentenced to five years in prison for possession of unlicensed firearm and ammunition. On Friday, May 2, a search by police officers, during which Wade and his in-laws were present, recovered two out of eight .38 revolvers that were reportedly stolen from a metal safe inside the San Pedro Police Station, where the security company, KBH, had stored them for safety. The company also reported that 101 rounds of its .38 ammunition that were inside the safe were also stolen. Constable Wade spent the weekend in police custody after he was arrested and charged for the theft of the revolvers and ammunition, which were found at his in-laws' house on Cemetery Road. In an unprecedented show of their displeasure with Wade, the police brought their comrade to the Belize City Magistrate's Court in handcuffs on Monday afternoon. But Wade's arraignment was delayed until almost the end of the work day, because all of the magistrates were busy in a meeting.

Good news for BEL customers - rates may drop further!
Consumers were buffeted with a 16.87% increase in electricity rates last January, with the average electricity rate being raised from 41.81 cents per kilowatt-hour to 48.86 cents per kilowatt-hour, due to a reported rise in the cost of power. Since then, though, Belizean consumers have seen a reprieve, with the electricity rate falling to 44.65�, and effective July 1, 2014, there may be a further 2.65% decrease to 43.47�. John Avery, chairman of the Public Utilities Commission (PUC), told the media at a press conference Monday afternoon that the PUC's decision calls for total corrections of $17.7 mil in favor of consumers. Avery said that in its submission on April 1, 2014, the Belize Electricity Limited (BEL) asked for more money to cover operational expenses, but they also proposed that the rates should be lowered to 43 cents per kilowatt hour - a reduction of about 3.7%. The PUC chairman said that with further corrections to be paid in favor of consumers, rates are likely to decrease further down the road.

Dr. Henry Canton steps down as CPBL CEO
Speculation has been rife in the last few weeks, and last Friday the news finally surfaced that the embattled Chief Executive Officer of the Citrus Products of Belize Limited (CPBL), Dr. Henry Canton, had not been fired as was originally believed, but had in fact resigned from his post on Wednesday, April 30, after a 12-year tenure at the helm of the citrus processing company. A press release which was issued last Friday, May 2, by CPBL, announced Canton's departure, saying that "Canton tendered his resignation from the company where he has served as the CEO�since October 2002." According to the release, Canton will continue to serve on CPBL's board of directors as a representative of Banks Holdings Ltd. and his second-in-command, Chief Operations Officer Jaime Alpuche, will be the acting CEO until a new CEO is eventually appointed by the board of directors.

TIDE Junior
The TIDE Junior Freshwater Cup football tournament resumed after the Easter Break with 1 game played on Friday, May 2; and it was San Pedro Columbia Boys, 2-0, over Little Flower Boys, with goals coming from Gabriel Che (25') and Gilbert Chiac (35'). The tournament will now continue until June with 3 games being played each week.

Western Ballaz
A pivotal match to secure the home court advantage in the upcoming National Elite Basketball League (NEBL) playoffs turned out to be an exciting, high intensity showdown this evening at Bird's Isle in Belize City, as the Western Ballaz of Cayo went up against Smart No Limit of Belize City. Early in the game, it was all Smart No Limit, who jumped the Western Ballaz by 7 points with a score of 11-4 at 6:34 remaining in the first quarter; but by the end of that quarter, the Western Ballaz had taken the lead by 4 and brought the score to 21-17 in their favor. The Western Ballaz continued to dominate the game throughout the second quarter, and by halftime, Smart No Limit was trailing by 6 points, 42-36. Both teams seemed re-energized as they began the third quarter, and although Smart No Limit came within 1 point of the lead with 3:49 left in the quarter, the Western Ballaz retained control of the game, leading by 3 points, 57-54, at the end of the third.

FFB President's Cup
The first FFB President's Cup tournament kicked off with Week 1 games over the weekend at 3 of 4 scheduled venues. There are 8 teams participating in the tournament, and they represent 8 different football zones of the country - Estrellas FC from Toledo, Sagitun from Independence, Pomona United from Stann Creek, Roaring Creek RC from Belmopan, Benque D.C. United from Cayo, Belize District Stars from Belize District, Progresso FC from Orange Walk, and San Antonio FC from Corozal. In the only game on Saturday night, the Michael Ashcroft Stadium was the venue where visiting Roaring Creek United got the 3-2 win over home standing Sagitun. Alden Coleman (47'), Michael Lewis (54') and Orin Reneau (92') shook the net for Roaring Creek; while Ashley Torres (72') and Wilbert Rivas (13') scored for Sagitun. In the first Sunday afternoon game, up north at the Ricalde Stadium in Corozal, visiting Progresso FC clipped San Antonio FC, 2-1, with goals from Marlon Miranda (42') and Eliazar Itza (78'), while the lone tally for San Antonio was by Russell Casanova (55').

Support our Belize National Women
Fresh off a 2-1 victory over the Quintana Roo champs in their recent international friendly in Chetumal on April 27, the Belize National Women "A" Team embarks on a another weekend of matches, leaving Belize on Friday for Playa Del Carmen, Quintana Roo, where they will participate in a Mundo Maya tournament, returning to Belize on Sunday. The team is preparing for the UNCAF (Central American) eliminations in Guatemala on May 19-25, which is an official Qualifier tournament for the CONCACAF Women Gold Cup, to be held later in Cancun, Mexico. Three members of the National Women "A" Team were guests on this morning's Krem WUB, along with their team manager, Mrs. Carol Palma, and coach, Kent Gabourel. Also accompanying the delegation was FFB Public Relations Officer Luis Pena, who exhorted football fans countrywide and the business community, in particular, to give their full support, financial and otherwise, to the team.

EDITORIAL: The faceoff at the Sarstoon/Temash
Cheap, abundant petroleum is a primary foreign policy objective of the United States of America, the world's superpower and the undisputed boss of the planet's Western Hemisphere. The political leaders of the United States are elected by voters who want an ever improving standard of living. Cheap, abundant petroleum is a prerequisite for maintaining and improving America's wealth and power. When British Honduras became a self-governing colony in January of 1964, we Belizeans did not realize that at that point we were really entering the orbit of United States' influence. Even if we had so realized, very few of us would have objected. The research of California-based Belizean Dr. Jerome Straughan has established that Belizeans had been travelling to the United States to work and live from the latter part of the nineteenth century, after the U.S. Civil War was won by the Union under Abraham Lincoln, a Union which had abolished slavery. Early in the twentieth century, especially during and after World War I (1914-1918), a great deal more movement from British Honduras to America took place, especially through the New Orleans port of entry.

From The Publisher
1964 was the year when British Honduras attained internal self-government, it was the year when the school holidays were arbitrarily changed from April and May to July and August in order, apparently, to coincide with the school holidays in the United States, and it was also the year, in late August or early September, when St. John's College Sixth Form went co-ed, with a class of young ladies who were mostly from the St. Catherine Academy's graduating class of 1964. There were also at least three young ladies from Cayo, I remember that clearly. In fact, one of these young ladies later married one of my classmates from the SJC high school graduating class of 1963 - Alvaro Maga�a. Alvaro told me that when I ran into him in San Ignacio a few years ago, after not having seen him for almost five decades. Between January and June, say, of 1964, we who became the 1965 graduating class of SJC Sixth Form had begun our Advanced Level studies on the southern side of the traditional high school campus under the supervision of Fr. Ronald Zinkle, S. J. That class included the late Neil Garbutt, Julian Castillo, Carlson Gough, Pedro Carrillo, Carlos Perdomo, the late Roger Silva, Lennox Vernon, Marion Paulino, Alexander Monsanto, and Daniel Castellanos.

LETTERS: The dam company's responsibilities
With regards to the BELPO press release concerning the need for a safety alert system to let people know when the rivers will rise due to dam operations, this is essential and should have been in place a long time ago. We must recognize that the dam is a money making operation - a business - and uses precious Belizean resources to function. There should be outrage if just one Belizean mother has to bury a child due to neglect on the part of the entities financially gaining from operating the dam and using Belizean resources to do so. At the very least, the dam company (no pun intended) should be providing a system toward the safety and protection of Belizeans.

GOB issues clarification on US Capital's oil permit
Last Friday, May 2, the Government of Belize (GOB)'s Ministry of Energy, Science & Technology and Public Utilities - which is the oversight body for petroleum operations in Belize - issued a press release that initially censured the media for what it referred to as "misstatements" regarding the permit which was issued by the Forest Department to US Capital Energy (Belize) Limited, and later clarified the scope of that permit. According to the Ministry, the permit that was issued to the oil exploration company by the Forest Department on April 30th, 2013 allowed for US Capital to simply enter the Sarstoon-Temash National Park for the purpose of conducting petroleum exploration drilling operations, and the Ministry explicitly notes that the permit does not give permission to conduct actual drilling operations. Permission to drill, explained the release, is given by the Ministry with responsibility for the Geology and Petroleum Department and not the Forest Department.

H. E. Adalbert Tucker laid to rest
Official funeral services were held on Saturday morning, May 3, for His Excellency, Adalbert Alexander Tucker, at St. John's Cathedral in Belize City. Bert passed away on April 10 in Kingston, Jamaica, at the age of 70. Celebrant of the Requiem Mass was Rt. Rev. Philip Wright (Lord Bishop of Belize), assisted by Rev. Eric Richards, Rev. Rudolph Anthony, and Rev. Lynda Moguel. The Organist was Mr. Kevin Campbell. Hon. Godwin Hulse, the Minister of Labor and Local Government, gave the Official Remembrance, while Eulogies were given by Norman Fairweather and Vernon Card. Elecif Tucker Arthurs, a sister of the deceased, gave the Family Reflection. The Pallbearers were Russell Tucker, Milton Arthurs, Jr., Chad Tucker, Alister Martin, Kingsley Jenkins, and Amilcar Mutilifa.

To drill or not to drill: Belize High School wins 1st Nat'l Oil Debate
While the oil drilling issue rages on in southern Belize between the Sarstoon-Temash Institute for Indigenous Management (SATIIM) and the oil exploration company US Capital Energy (Belize) Ltd. regarding the right to conduct oil exploration activities within the Sarstoon-Temash National Park, high schoolers from across the country were engaged in the first ever National Secondary School Oil Debate competition which concluded last Wednesday at the Bliss Center for the Performing Arts. The competition, which was organized by the Belize Coalition to Save Our Natural Heritage, started back in November of 2013, and the goal of the competition was to encourage discussion and research on oil exploration in Belize. The participating high schools who were enlisted took part in a series of debates concerning the merits and disadvantages of oil exploration, and in the end, the Belize High School debate team from Belize City won over Julian Cho High School from Toledo after over 40 minutes of constant debating.

From "The Princess" to "The Ramada Belize City Princess"
This morning during a media briefing at its Belize City location on Newtown Barracks, the management of the Belize City Princess Hotel and Casino announced that they will be rebranding the hotel in an effort to change its image both locally and internationally, as well as attract international clientele to the country. The owners of the hotel - which will now be known as the Ramada Belize City Princess - have agreed to join the Ramada chain of hotels, a subsidiary of the Windham Hotel Group from New Jersey, U.S.A., which happens to be the largest hotel company in the world, with over 7,200 hotels currently in operation worldwide. The new general manager of the Princess Hotel, Erol Olcan, noted that the hotel is not being sold to the Ramada and that financial considerations are not part of their decision to rebrand; instead, he said, there is a partnership between Ramada and the Turkish-owned Princess International.

Inflation 1.7% and exports down 22% for first quarter
Belize is reporting an inflation rate of 1.7% for the first quarter of 2014, according to information released today by the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB). Although the inflation rate is marginal, consumers were faced with substantial price spikes for red kidney beans - a staple commodity of the national dish. While the bad news for consumers on the local market was an increase of 24.4% in the price of red kidney beans, from $1.99 a pound to $2.48 a pound in the month of March, the good news for the productive sector is that export earnings from the sale of red kidney beans to Jamaica was up by $3 million due to higher demand from the sister Caribbean nation. The overall inflation rate for March 2014 was 1.4% higher than March 2013, and the most significant price increases were recorded for beef, pork, black beans, red kidney beans, cabbages, carrots, onions and limes. Cooking costs are also higher, due to a rise in butane prices.

Guatemala man found decomposing in Chiquibul
The decomposed body of a Guatemalan, identified as Heber De Jesus Tzin Alvarado, 47, a farmer of Dolores, Guatemala, has been returned to his family members for burial in his home village after the body was recovered in the Chiquibul Forest Reserve by a composite police-BDF patrol on Saturday, May 3, and taken to Santa Elena for an autopsy that was performed yesterday, Sunday, May 4, at the Western Regional Hospital to certify the cause of his death. The body was to have been buried at the conclusion of the autopsy in Santa Elena, but the family requested that the body be returned to them, and the corpse was returned yesterday, Sunday, May 4. Police reported that Alvarado had been shot multiple times. Gunshots wounds were seen in the left side of his ribcage area, and he also had a gunshot wound in the left leg, one in the left side of his head and another in the mid portion of his back.

Police caught Honduran youth who "just walked over to Belize"
A Belize City police mobile patrol on the south side of the city nabbed a Honduran youth who has been living in Belize illegally. He was found loitering in front of Tow Tow Grocery Store on Mahogany Street on Wednesday. He could not properly identify himself and after an aunt took his Honduran identification document to the police station, he was handed over to the Immigration Department. When interviewed by immigration officers, Dasty Moises Guerrero, 21, told them that he had no problem when he "just walked over to Belize." He said he was not detected and has been living here since last November. A check at the western border entry confirmed that there was no record of Guerrero's entry to Belize. He was deemed a prohibited immigrant and a removal order was signed by Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer after he pleaded guilty to entering Belize illegally.

Baby, 2, dies after drinking herbicide
Rhondene Usher of Belize-Corozal Road, Orange Walk Town, is mourning the death of her baby, Justice Usher, 2, who died after he drank poison at about 10:30 Wednesday morning, April 30. Baby Justice had been playing in the yard, where Rhondene was hanging her laundry on a clothesline. Rhondene later heard the child crying, and the baby emerged from a storeroom next to their house, which he had entered at some point. The crying child went to her, with liquid insecticide coming out of his mouth, and told her that he had drunk "juice." The frantic mother reportedly began washing baby Justice's face with soap and gave him water to drink, but the liquid was still coming from his mouth, so she immediately induced vomiting and rushed him in a taxi to the Northern Regional Hospital in Orange Walk Town, where he was declared dead on arrival.

Russell Roberts says GOB "mum" on promised firearm reforms
Back in February, National Security Minister John Saldivar announced that the Government would undertake immediate consultations to pave the way for much needed reforms to Belize's firearms legislation, amid continued complaints that the laws, described by some as "draconian" because they impose mandatory remand for persons charged for guns and ammunition, have been responsible for landing innocent and upstanding Belizeans behind bars. Under the existing laws, a driver unaware that a hitchhiker has a gun in his or her car or a guest at a home where such illegal guns and ammo are found could find themselves on remand for weeks before being able to get bail. In February, Minister Saldivar announced that, "We have also been looking at proposals to narrow the net of persons that the police would be able to hold accountable for these firearms and ammunition as they are found on these premises; so, we are looking at those and shortly, will begin the public consultations with the various stakeholders�"

Youth, 18, drowns in the Macal in Ontario
The body of Justin Lamb, 18, of Camalote, Cayo, was recovered from the Macal River in the Ontario area at about 9:00 Saturday morning, two days after he jumped into the river for a swim and failed to resurface. His body was taken to the Belmopan Hospital, where a post-mortem was carried out to certify the cause of his death. Police say that at about 12:30 Thursday afternoon, May 1, Lamb and two friends, Travis Gongora, 18, and another man from Ontario, went swimming in the area behind the Ontario Christian School. Lamb jumped into the river, went under the water and did not resurface. His friends, who were waiting for him to emerge from the water, became anxious, when he failed to do so. They immediately began a search for him, but the water was murky and the current was strong, which impeded their efforts.

Kayaking at sea turns tragic - 1 saved, 1 missing
The National Coast Guard, along with the San Pedro police, concerned fishermen of San Pedro and the BDF Air Wing, are presently conducting a search-and-rescue operation in the area of Northern San Pedro, which has been extended to Turneffe and the surrounding area to find Wrangler Shane Leesman, 29, an American soldier who went under water and failed to resurface after the kayak in which he and his friend were riding overturned while they were kayaking in the Northern San Pedro area at about 11:30 Tuesday morning. Six days after he was submerged in the water, Leesman has not been found. Bradley Evans Josker, 24, also an American soldier, who was along with Leesman in the canoe, was rescued by the Coast Guard at about 5:30 that same Tuesday evening, 6 hours after they overturned in the sea. Josker was taken to the San Pedro Polyclinic, where he was examined and released. He was then taken to the San Pedro Police Station, where he gave a formal statement to police.

Police net 48 pounds of weed after high speed chase
A driver and his companion who were reportedly transporting two chockfull sacks of suspected cannabis totaling 48 pounds in weight did not make it to his intended destination because he was busted after his vehicle overturned just in front of the San Ignacio police station last night while being pursued by the cops. According to San Ignacio police, they were conducting a mobile patrol in San Ignacio Town last night at around 8:25 p.m. when they noticed a brown Mazda pickup truck approaching from the direction of Benque Viejo Town at a very high speed. Police said that they signaled the driver to stop, but he continued barreling past at the same speed, after which they set chase behind the truck, which later overturned on Buena Vista Street in front of the police station. After the accident, the officers conducted a search on the capsized vehicle and reportedly discovered a red sack on the front passenger seat which contained 28 pounds of suspected cannabis, and a further search of the vehicle led to the discovery of another sack behind the driver's seat which contained 20 pounds of suspected cannabis.

Sexual assault allegation lands construction worker behind bars
A construction worker who allegedly touched a woman inappropriately and ended up in a fight with her after she retaliated physically, was remanded to prison after he was arraigned on two criminal charges in the Belize City Magistrate's Court this morning. Justin Goff, 26, pleaded not guilty to one count of wounding and one count of sexual assault - the new name for the charge in the amended section of the law, formally known as aggravated assault of an indecent nature - and one count of wounding before Magistrate Hettie Mae Stewart. But when the question of granting bail to Goff came up, the court's prosecutor, Sergeant Pablo Pikney, objected to bail on the grounds that the charge is prevalent and in the present case, it also appears from the report the victim gave to the police that violence was used.

Supreme Court bail and "police negligence" kept KHMH nurse's aide out of prison
A Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital nurse's aide, Bernadette Samuels, 53, who suffers from hypertension and had to be hospitalized after a Gang Suppression Unit (GSU) search of her Far West Street home uncovered two .9mm rounds and two small portions of cannabis, was spared prison time when she was arraigned before Senior Magistrate Sharon Frazer on Tuesday. Samuels is among the few persons charged under the amended Firearms Act mandating automatic remand to prison for persons caught with unlicensed firearm or ammunition, who have not been remanded to prison. That she did not enter the remand section of the Central Prison, however, is not attributed to any abandonment of the rigid prescription of the Firearms Act, but was caused by what her attorney characterized as "negligence on the part of the police who failed in their responsibility to take her to court."

Patrick Jones

Electricity rates to go down
The Public Utilities Commission (PUC) has released its initial decision on the Annual Review Proceeding (ARP) for Belize Electricity Limited (BEL). If there are no objections before May 12, on July 1 the utility regulator will reduce the mean electricity rate to 43.47 cents per kilowatt-hour from 44.65 cents, a reduction of just over 2.6%. After a whopping 16% increase last January due to higher power costs for the state-run provider, there have been successive decreases due to improved services from the trio of dams in the Cayo District which between July of last year and February of this year powered 64% of the country's electricity consumption, compared to 25.7% for Mexico. The Mexican share of electricity was cut in half from 56% over the previous 12 months.

Coye family assets remain locked down by court order
As of late on Monday, contrary to the hopes of their attorneys, the surviving members of the Coye family were not allowed access to their bank accounts following an order lifting the freezing of the accounts by Justice Shona Griffith earlier in the day. This is because according to multiple credible reports, a Panamanian company known as Internet Experts, S.A., otherwise doing business as Instadollar, successfully applied for an ex parte injunction from the Sureme Court on Monday afternoon, which has since been served on all financial institutions doing business with the Coye family and their attorneys. The injunction keeps the over $1 million left after Government's Income Tax Department seized nearly half the estate for income taxes out of the Coyes' hands until the resolution of their suit on Monday, May 19.

Lincoln Sabido charged for grocery shop robbery
29 year old Lincoln Sabido is charged for the robbery of a Chinese shop last week Tuesday in Belize City. Owner of Ying Li Shop on Tibruce Street, 37 year old Desuo Li, was removing items from his vehicle into the store around 10:00 a.m. on April 29 when two men entered, carrying a firearm and a knife respectively. The man with the gun proceeded to point it at Li and two other individuals inside the store at the time, identified as Randy Smith and Gareth Casimiro, and ordered them all to get on the ground. As they complied, his companion stole a total of $3,500 in cash and goods, including $700 in cash, a black laptop computer, two cell phones and two cartons of cigarettes.


We often say that it's impossible to exhaust all of your options for activities on the island, but the Yanez family came close! Tony, Colleen and their sons, Dan and Tom had numerous soccer matches and put our staff to work playing defense. They snorkeled the reef at South Water Caye, the reef by the island, Tony tried spear fishing and everyone hunted for conch shells and sand dollars. It was their first time to jet ski and we got everyone out on the tube. They caught fishing bait with Clifford and went out to fish with he and James. They had some well deserved naps in the hammocks, tried out our new telescope and ate some delicious food when there was time for it! Thank you, Yanez family, for all of the memories and for bringing so much life to the island - we hope you were as impressed with our little slice of paradise as we were with your unstoppable energy! We may be due for a hammock nap now�


Video: Tarpon - Lighthouse Reef - Belize, 15sec.
We found those big beautiful tarpon in Belize at Night Watch near Long Caye.

Video: Protected Areas of Belize by APAMO, 6min.
This video was produced by APAMO (Association of Protected Areas Management Organization). It describes the magnificence of Belize's natural resources and gives a thorough break down of Belize's PA categories.

Video: Belize - Horseriding, 3min.
April 2014

Video: Belize CAVE TUBING, 17min.

Video: Belize 2014, 23min.
Kaylan MacInnis

Video: Replacing a Chevy Shock Absorber in Belize, 9min.
The roads here in Belize, Central America are really bad in most places. With the heavy truck transport of crude oil, the Hummingbird Highway has really deteriorated badly. Most roads in Belize are not paved and in the wet season they can get extremely rough. One must be extremely careful in their driving if they expect a vehicle to last down here. Our 2003 Chevy Venture van has about 250,000 miles on it. Before we left to drive down here to Belize through Oregon, California, Nevada, Arizona and Mexico, we installed Gabriel Hijacker air shocks because we know of the "topes" in Mexico and Belize. These are essentially "speed bumps" (or "sleeping policemen" at they are affectionately called) in the middle of the highway. We often carry as many as 18 people in the Chevy (yes - this IS the Caribbean....). The extra weight makes the van bottom out on the topes and pot holes. We air the shocks up to minimize undercarriage damage. Suspension damage is one of the leading causes vehicle failures here in Central America. Sometimes with deadly consequences.

Video: Blackbird Resort Belize panorama, 1min.
Blackbird Resort on Turneffe Atoll, off the coast of Belize. Brief panorama.

Video: Cozumel & Belize, 10min.
We had a great time as you can tell.

Video: Azul Resort, 3min.
(Raw footage for Gay Travel Belize)

Video: jerry jeff belize, 2min.

Video: jennifer lawrence belize, 2min.

Video: Belize Day 1, 4min.
Check in with Brian from the Learning Cycle as he arrives in Belize and heads to Punta Gorda.

Video: Belize 2014, 7min.
from Emily Barlow-Krelina

Video: UNICEF Analysis Of Women And Children Belize, 15min.

Video: Coral Nurseries In Belize, 9min.

Video: Maya Land Rights Judgement Decision In Belize, 8min.

Video: Caye Caulker Belize, 4min.

Video: Be One With Belize, 18min.

Video: Trailer To Belize Video, 2min.
Trailer for the Belize Marketing Video

Video: Hummingbird Highway, Belize, 5min.

Video: Chelsea and Stephen Belize 2014, 5min.

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