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#519451 - 12/02/16 12:42 AM Today's Belize News: December 2, 2016  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 56,698
Marty Offline
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Specials and Events

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


The San Pedro Sun

San Pedro Town Celebrates 32 years of township

31 backpacks donated to San Pedro Roman Catholic School
Thanks to a donor, who wishes to remain anonymous, 31 students at the San Pedro Roman Catholic School (SPRCS) received new backpacks on Friday, November 25th. Each backpack was filled with goodies such as a headphone, charger, a bike warning light, and some batteries. Principal of SPRCS, Roxani Kay explained that the donor approached her and asked if he could to donate schoolbags to those students who are in need. Kay was more than happy to receive the donation. “I was delighted and happy for our students, because I knew that they would be grateful and enthusiastic about the donation. We do have students who have financial challenges and many come unprepared for classes. Therefore, when persons in our community or visitors are willing to help out our school children, this type of gesture is always appreciated and valued. It make us feel that indeed we do have people who are interested in investing in our children’s education,” said Kay.

Rixy G Smith is Nuestra Belleza Gay 2016-2017
The third annual Nuestra Belleza Gay Pageant united the San Pedro’s Lesbian, Bisexual, Gay and Transgender (LBGT) community and supporters on Saturday, November 26th. Held at the Angel Nuñez Auditorium, dozens of people came out to support the show organized by Zeilanni Natasha. While the crowd got comfortable, Nuestra Belleza 2015-2016 Byankka Bank’s spiced up the opening show with a dance. Nuestra Belleza Gay 2014-2015 Jennifer Baily Bowen served as the Master of Ceremonies, and introduced this year’s four delegates: Kittana Welch, Gaylene Summers, Angeline Del la Rosa, and Rixy G Smith. The panel of judges included Alfonso Singh, Dina Graniel, Anny Cruz, and Mynor Tepaz, along with tabulators, Miguel Caliz and Aldair Tun.

Special Olympics Torch comes to Ambergris Caye
The San Pedro Police Department was proud to host the Special Olympics Belize torch when it arrived in San Pedro Town on Tuesday, November 29th. The event forms part of the annual Law Enforcement Torch Run (LETR), which has been taking place for the last five years. The torch arrived shortly after 6PM, and remained on the island until Wednesday, November 30th after being paraded through the streets of Town. According to Inspector of Police Elroy Carcamo LETR is part of a series of events held by Special Olympics International across the world to promote awareness for persons living with disabilities. “In this event, we also look to fundraise and sensitize the community to assist children with intellectual disabilities who are participating in sporting activities,” said Carcamo.

Ambergris Today

Atlantic Hurricane Season was Deadliest in Over 10 years
The 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season has become one of the most active and deadliest in years. We survived it here in Belize, but not without being hit by Hurricane Earl which caused over $10Mil in damages on Ambergris Caye alone and over $100Mil loss for Belize’s agriculture industry. Hurricane Earl was a big blow for Belize in August, luckily there were no casualties during the Category 1 Storm. There was major damage to infrastructure as strong winds ripped roofs off some buildings, uprooted trees and caused widespread power outages. Looking at all the storm activity during the Atlantic Season, there was lots more devastation and loss of lives. The season generated 15 named storms, seven of which were hurricanes; three of those Major Hurricanes. The season was the deadliest since 2005 and the costliest since 2012.

Mass First Aid Training and a Successful Blood Drive
The Belize Red Cross - San Pedro Branch (SPBRC) is proud to announce that training is underway for the staff of Mahogany Bay Village. Soon 30 newly qualified First Responders will be available to assist staff, visitors of the village and the community at large. The first 10 were trained Tuesday, November 22nd, the second group is scheduled for December 6th and the third group soon after. All will be trained in First Aid, CPR and AED utilization. San Pedro Red Cross has been providing First Aid training to all the citizens, organizations and businesses of San Pedro since November 2013 for a nominal fee. This year our certified instructors were able to train many teachers, firefighters and youths of the island due to the generous contributions from sponsors.

Misc Belizean Sourcesmzz

Art For Christmas 2016
CONSIDER A PAINTING BY CHRIS EMMANUEL AS A GIFT THIS YEAR!! Ernie Christopher (Chris) Emmanuel is a successful artist/poet/writer/speaker. He is the author of four books in the self-development and inspirational genre. Chris has appeared on TV in Washington, DC. Minnesota, Belize and Toronto, Canada, for his Art and Poetry.

Fundraiser for Kathy Portillo
Want to get involved in something very positive this Holiday Season? Local Sanpedrana, Kathy Portillo was in a tragic car accident and suffered extensive injuries that include a severe spinal cord injury that left her paralyzed from the chest down. She is undergoing a complex recovery process and needs assistance with all daily living activities. This fundraiser will help to provide 24/7 nursing care and physical therapy. Kathy was born and raised in Belize. She has served as a role model for young Sanpedranas and continues to inspire the people of San Pedro. Please join the community for this important event. Radiation & Dollar Drive - Friday, December 2 @7a.m Saturday, December 3 - Fun Run @ Walk - 5:30a.m. Food Sale & Raffles - 10a.m. Thank you for your Support Sign up with Wilfredo Jr Alamilla (624-9480) & Daniela Guerrero at the San Pedro Town Council.

Eastern Police Division South;Community Policing
At it.....cleaning up abandoned bushy lots in the Precinct 2 area of Belize City.

26 Isuzu new pick-up trucks
Today, Ambassador Carlos Moreno handed over 26 Isuzu pick-up trucks and other equipment valued at US $833,319 to the Belize Police Department (BPD). The vehicles will be used to support existing BPD programs such as Community Policing, the CompStat Program, the Field Training Officer Program, and IT related projects. Since 2008, the United States Government has provided US $40 million to the Government of Belize through the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) to assist in improving and enhancing citizen security and rule of law in Belize. Assistance through CARSI supports programs such as Community Policing, CompStat, Neighborhood Watch Programs, Forensics, and several other areas. The vehicles are a part of CARSI’s systemic approach to accomplish that goal by providing several INL-supported police units with improved mobility.

Paradise Theater playing this weekend
Ben-Hur, Morgan, Pete's Dragon, High Strung. *Please note that HIGH STRUNG is playing on Saturday and Sunday only* Screen 2 has been reserved for a School Event for 9pm on Friday.

Smart will now be offering internet on Caye Caulker
Today at the Community Center 10am to 4pm!

Are you coming to Caye Caulker next week?
cean Academy's school office printer has run out of toner and we need more! We will buy and ship to your address if you can pack it in your bags for us. It is only $13 online but expensive in Belize.

Belize International Yoga Festival
Coming up at end of the year - Belize International Yoga Festival - Exciting New Festival for Belize. December 31, 2016 @ 6:00 am – January 1, 2017 @ 12:00 am WHERE: Harbour View Greens, Fort St. Belize City, Belize. Rhythm of Change, (ROC) Om Shanti Belize is a secular, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting and implementing activities that bring forth individual, social and environmental changes in our country. We are proud to be using innovative approaches to peace building including yoga, meditation environmental consciousness and other forms of wellness. ROC Om Shanti, Belize has been engaged in several community outreach activities; attached are a few pictures of some of our recent engagements. We are about to embark on its first large project, the Belize International Yoga Festival, which will take place on New Year’s Eve, December 31, 2016 in Belize City. The festival is designed to bring together yoga and meditation practitioners, aspirants and the general public to enjoy soulful moments of wellness, healing, relaxation and reflection in order to promote more positive interactions that are vitally important for the well-being of our communities and country.

Hands up for HIV Prevention
Department of Youth Services Belmopan Office participating in the HANDS UP FOR HIV PREVENTION campaign. Please join us in creating more awareness to change our world by preventing new infections of HIV, increasing personal care and health for those infected and decreasing stigma and discrimination. All you need to do is take a photo with a word or short phrase written in your palm. It can be a word or phrase that summarizes what we need to strengthen for HIV prevention efforts.

TIDE and the youth
Day 7 of food and beverage training offered to unemployed youths of Toledo by TIDE and the youth department and funded by the US Embassy! 'I am learning so much,' said one of the youths, 'and will surely seek employment after my training!' The Embassy is proud to be training Toledo's youth to enhance their employability skills and making a difference! Thank you for your partnership, Toledo Institute for Development and Environment (TIDE).

BWRC 2016 Gala
The Belize Wildlife & Referral Clinic had their 3rd annual Gala and silent auction at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel. Once again, lionfish was on the menu, as it should have been, and the lionfish sere was superb.

THIS DAY IN HISTORY
On December 1st, 1820, the Light House on Half Moon key completed, and a light first shewn. The Light House will be 200 years old in 2020. Honduras Almanack 1829

"Enchaining Kinship: Figurines and State Formation At Cahal Pech, Cayo, Belize"
The Institute of Archaeology would like to congratulate Dr. Lisa DeLance on successfully defending her dissertation "Enchaining Kinship: Figurines and State Formation At Cahal Pech, Cayo, Belize". We wish Dr. DeLance all the best in her future endeavors.

Channel 7

26 New Trucks For Police
Police formations all over the county got their fancy new rides today. 26 of them rolled into the city in style yesterday but they were officially handed over this morning at the ITVET compound. These 2017 Isuzu D-max trucks are some of the best, most well-suited trucks the police department has gotten because of their durability and high end features. Today I found out how these trucks will improve police work countrywide. Courtney Weatherburne reporting By now, most of these officers are familiar with the dazzling interior of a brand new vehicle, the sturdy feel of the gear shift and the smooth slip of a new steering wheel but, they will have to learn a thing or two about the high tech features of these brand new 2017 D-Max trucks. H.E Carlos Moreno, US Ambassador: "These vehicles are equipped with GPS real time tracking, communication systems, dash board cameras that I am sure will have an opportunity to see some of those lights flashing like I saw yesterday."

Police Trucks Feature Technology To Monitor Police Work
And while the trucks begin work immediately, so does the job of policing the cops who use them. That’s right, these trucks won’t just be deployed without any monitoring. There’s 21st. century technology – namely a dashboard camera - to provide an added level of accountability. It will record the officers actions in and around the pickup truck. Commissioner Whylie says this will be useful in assessing claims of police brutality: Reporter: "When it comes to the dashboard cameras, tell us what the public can expect now that this has been put in place? Is it that they will be on for every single trip?" Allen Whylie, Commissioner of Police: "Well the camera should always be on, as long as the vehicle is operational, the camera should be on and as I've said we've developed a number of protocols. It’s not the first time that we are having cameras in vehicles. I believe a previous fleet of Ford Rangers that we have received through the CARSI programs also had cameras and so these cameras I believe is a little better quality cameras, but the protocols have been developed and strengthen to ensure that there is accountability and that they stay on and as I said in my earlier remarks, as a result of these cameras the interaction between the police and the members of the community that they would be more professional."

Cops Say New Truck In Drain Wasn't An Accident
And while best practices are included to ensure that the new police trucks are used according to the rules, for a wary public, that's hardly enough. Indeed, the police department has a reputation for wrecking vehicles fast. And those concerns were confirmed over the weekend when someone posted video on Facebook showing a new Mazda police truck in the drain on Pitta street in southside Belize City. Today we asked the commissioner about it:.. Allen Whylie, Commissioner of Police: "I haven't seen the video. I am aware. I was briefed that there was a vehicle somewhere in St. Martin's where it is said that either a sink hole or the drain. I am not certain, but I think that the deputy commissioner had addressed that matter, because I believe it was a vehicle assigned to the Eastern Division South." "I would have to see the video before I could comment further and I will see it in my own time."

COMPOL Says No Proof That There Was A Landing On Clandestine Airstrip
Earlier this week we told you about the illicit airstrip that police found near mile nine on the Coastal Highway in the Belize District. That was Tuesday morning when a plane was heard circling low in the Belize District. When police got there, they found no plane and no drugs, just 20 drums - 16 filled with aviation fuel, while four were empty. They also came upon, makeshift landing lights, 4 batteries, canvases, and the discarded seats from an airplane. These were most likely removed to make way for a drug cargo. It suggests what is well known to those in law enforcement circles: that Belize continues to be used as a transshipment point for drugs. But, is there any police intelligence on how often illicit landings go undetected, or how many of the clandestine airstrips exist? Well, we're way ahead of the commissioner on this one: he says there's no evidence that a plane landed there:

Female Tacos Vendor Flung Off Motorbike and Robbed
Every morning single mother of two, Mayra Castellanos hooks a trailer to the back of her motorcycle and rides from Ladyville to Hattieville to sell her tacos. She's been doing this seven days a week for the last seven years, but two days ago that all changed after she was attacked, thrown off her bike, broke her leg and was robbed. Here's what Castellanos' told us about the incident. Castellanos told us that she thinks she was targeted because she travels alone on the road every day. But, even though she will be out of commission for a month and a half, Castellanos says that as soon as her leg heals, she'll be back to business as usual. According to Castellanos, police had one person is custody, but she was unable to identify him because her assailants were wearing shirts over their faces.

The Notorious Chester Accused Again
35 year-old Belize City resident Chester Noralez has been making crime news since the early 90's, but his name gained newfound notoriety one year ago when he was accused of beating his 93 year old neighbor to within inches of his life. Well, he's making news again tonight after being taken to Magistrate's Court for a sexual assault charge. He's accused by a 17 year-old girl of fondling her. The teenager reported to police that on Monday, she was in front of Qin Shop on Mahogany Street when Noralez unexpectedly hugged her and fondled her buttocks. She said that she warned him that she was going to report him to police, and that's when he allegedly insulted her with a curse word. Police charged him with one count of sexual assault and one count of using insulting words. He was arraigned before Magistrate Carlon Mendoza, where he pleaded not guilty and was granted bail of $3,000.

Senate Criticizes Belize-Guyana Trade Pact
Last night, we brought you extensive coverage of yesterday's Senate Meeting. One of the motions which we didn't get a chance to tell you about, was a resolution tabled by the Government. It authorizes the Barrow Administration to ratify a Framework agreement between the Governments of Belize and Guyana for bilateral cooperation. Now, viewers will remember that rice war between the local producers and importer Jack Charles. He wanted to import cheap Guyanese rice, which he said was a higher quality, at a lower cost to consumers. That happened right around the start of the Christmas season last year. To protect the local producers, Belize had to send back 3 containers of Guyanese rice which Jack Charles already had shipped to the Port of Big Creek. Well, to ensure that Belize didn't offend the Government of Guyana for the refusal of that product, the then Minister of Agriculture, Gaspar Vega, and his CEO, Jose Alpuche, travelled to that CARICOM country to have face to face talks with their Guyanese counterparts. Those talks have resulted in this Framework agreement for the deepening of bilateral cooperation between both countries.

Whylie Rejects GSU Narrative Alleging Personal Interest in Internal Probe
One month ago, news emerged that there were complaints of sexual harassment within the GSU. Female officers complained to the Ombudsman that they were targeted by senior male officers. It caused quite a stink in the unit because of internal police politics - which suggested that the Commissioner of Police had some sort vested interest in the case. Today the commissioner said the matter has been referred to the Professional Standards Branch and threatened suit against those media houses who have published that characterization:. Courtney Weatherburne, 7News: "We understand that several female GSU officers made reports that they were being sexually harassed by their fellow male GSU officers." Allen Whylie, Commissioner of Police: "All I can say on that matter is the matter is under investigation by the professional standards branch." Reporter "Sir, I had wanted to add to that, because our understanding is that you felt aggrieve by what was reported in one media and probably another to the point that you have sought legal action against those two media stations, but in the public's interest an allegation has been made against yourself and in the public's interest to assure them that this isn't happening within one arm of the police department. Have you taken it upon yourself to ensure that it's been properly investigated that there was a a chain of command that every single officer who should have been informed was informed, which raises the question, were you informed and what did you..."

Belizario Says A Sudden and Early "Bye-Bye"
In late 2014 and 2015, during all the upheaval in the sugar industry, Belizario Carballo was a face that had become synonymous with BSI. And for a while we got the distinct impression that Belizario Carballo - as the company's financial director - was being favoured over his boss, CEO Joey Montalvo. Well, Montalvo retired in mid 2015, and this week we learned that Carballo has opted for early retirement and is no longer with BSI. Carballo was with the company for 25 years, while Joe Montalvo spent over 40 years with BSI - and before the ASR takeover two were considered the leaders of BSI. And that's why the early retirement has raised eyebrows, because of the clear suggested that ASR/BSI is flushing out the local bosses, and importing institutional capacity. We note that long time factory manager John Gillett also ended his tenure last year. ASR's public relations people stressed to CTV-3 that Carballo left the company under good terms.

Soldier was Saving Her From A Stalker, But Cops Say Two On A Bike Is Too Much
Riding two on a bike, it's virtually a Belizean past time, but the cops seem to be cracking down on it now. Today, 25 year old BDF soldier Kendric Archer appeared in the Magistrate's Court where he pled guilty to a single charge of carrying a person above the age of 10 on a bicycle. That person was Shanna Bennett, age 23, who was charged with the unusual offence of "allowing herself to be carried." While on the stand, Archer explained the situation, saying that he was on leave from his military duties, and while he was on his way to get some food he met Bennett. She told him that she was being followed by a dread man and feared for her life, so she asked him for a ride to get away from the stalker. Archer agreed and the two took off together. Police stopped them not long after and charged both. Bennett gave the same story, and after hearing both sides, Magistrate Mendoza dismissed the charges, and cautioned them not to let it happen again.

World AIDS Day Diagnosed
Today is World AIDS Day, a day used to raise awareness about HIV and AIDS, educate people about prevention methods and eliminate stigma against those infected. To create awareness in Belize, the National AIDS Commission and the Ministry of Health set up a testing site at the Battlefield Park in Belize City today. The site had HIV testing booths, as well as stalls that provided information about prevention and protection. We spoke to the Ministry of Health's Adherence Counselor, Kevin Mendes. World AIDS Day is a UNAIDS initiative. Emphasis is put on prevention and diagnosis of the disease with the goal to ensure that 90% of people living with HIV or AIDS are diagnosed, on antiretroviral treatment, and for them to have a fully suppressed viral load by 2020.

A Senate Salute For The Comandante
All this week, we've been showing you reflections of Belizean politicians on the contributions of the late Fidel Castro. The Cuban Commander-In-Chief made his mark on world history, as the most influential, far-reaching leader to come out of the Americas. Well, yesterday, the Senate took its opportunity to salute Castro with Members Eamon Courtenay and Godwin Hulse speaking about Cuba's self-less assistance to Belize: Deputy Prime Minister Patrick Faber and Foreign Affairs Minister Wilfred Elrington are in Cuba and will represent Belize at Castro's funeral on Sunday.

Channel 5

Is Net Vasquez Fit to Serve on Integrity Commission?
Is Nestor Vasquez qualified to serve on the Integrity Commission? The question provoked a furious back-and-forth during Wednesday’s meeting of the Senate in Belmopan, despite the Upper House ultimately voting [...]

Debt for Nature: Oil Jitters Cost Belize $200 Million?
Why would Government turn down a debt-for-nature swap programme? That is the hundred million dollar question tonight. Documents have surfaced showing that The Nature Conservancy approached Government about seven years [...]

New Rides for Police Department
The official handing over of a brand new fleet of vehicles for use by the police department took place today. On hand at the ITVET was the U.S. Ambassador Carlos [...]

Caught on Camera: E.D. South Addressing Alleged Infraction Involving Police Vehicle
While we’re on the subject of police vehicles, amateur footage of a pickup truck assigned to Eastern Division South has gone viral after it was posted on the internet a [...]

Police Cannot Ignore Welfare, Warns Commissioner
Since the beginning of the year, a number of police officers have died of natural causes and concerns are being raised about the physical wellbeing of the men and women [...]

B.T.I.A.’s A.G.M. is Call to Arms for Tourism Industry
The Belize Tourism Industry Association was established thirty-one years ago to represent the sector’s developers and service providers. It has presided over the explosion of the tourism industry into Belize’s [...]

Times Haad, Chamber Complains; Don’t Raise Taxes!
‘How di Krismus di come?’ It’s a favourite question of the press at this time of the year for consumers darting in and out of the shops looking for top [...]

UNCAC Will Not Save Us All, Says Chamber President
With the Senate assenting to Belize’s accession to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC) on Wednesday, nothing stands in the way of Prime Minister Dean Barrow signing on December [...]

Attempted Murder Charge Upgraded for Raheem Marsden
Raheem Marsden, who has been serving time for an attempted murder charge since July of this year, just saw his charge upgraded to murder.   Today, twenty four year old Marsden [...]

Burn Victims Mercy Fund Getting Money for Worthy Cause
The Burn Victims Mercy Fund has been operating for years now, but not much is known about how the funds are generated to assist victims in times of desperate need. [...]

World AIDS Day: New Cases Down as More Get Tested
The number of new cases of persons affected with HIV annually has been on a steady downward trend according to the National Aids Commission. Today, that good news was celebrated [...]

Tributes to Fidel Castro Continue; in Belize, a Call for Ending U.S. Embargo on Cuba
The memorial to late President of the Cuban Republic, Fidel Castro, with the attendance of world leaders took place on Tuesday night in Havana. Today, Castro’s remains arrived in the [...]

B.T.I.A. Wants G.O.B. to Protect Local Tourism Industry in Wake of Harvest Caye
Norwegian Cruise Line has come under fire from local tour operators for diverting newer cruise ships south to their brand-new exclusive property at Harvest Caye in the Stann Creek District. [...]

Coast Guard Searches for the Best Warrior
For the past two days, the competitive spirit among Coastguard officers has been in high levels at their headquarters on the George Price Highway. About fifty officers are participating in [...]

Healthy Living: 3 Reasons Why You Should Get Tested for H.I.V.
You saw earlier in this newscast the commemoration of World Aids Day in Belize. That story and the many others we’ve put together for this health segment have provided you [...]

CTV3

MOH Continues To Monitor ZIKA Virus
In mid-November, the World Health Organisation announced that it no longer considered the ZIKA virus an emergency and would shift its focus from a short term response to long-term efforts. What this meant was that WHO recognised that the virus was here to stay. It continues to affect babies who are born with a condition known as microcephaly, which causes abnormally small heads and restricted brain development. For Belize, health officials continue on the alert for Zika. While there were over 580 suspected cases in September, it ballooned to over 600 following Hurricane Earl in October. Director of Health Services Dr. Marvin Manzanero spoke to us about how Belize will be adjusting its effort to mitigate the spread of the virus. Dr. Marvin Manzanero - Director of Health Services: “For us now to know that it is an endemic means that we have it here and it is going to be cyclical, our efforts has to continue just like with dengue, with malaria and chikungunya your efforts are throughout the year, what this means for us because we are taking note of it is that we are aware that ZIKA is here we probably aren’t going to be having any further spike this year...”

PUP Criticizes GOB Political Appointees To Integrity Commission
At yesterday’s Senate meeting, the new members of the Integrity Commission were appointed. The Government, who named four members, nominated Marilyn Williams as the chairperson, along with members Armead Gabourel, Lisbeth Delgado, Wilmot Simmons and Nestor Vasquez. The Opposition named Melissa Balderamos-Mahler and Claudette Grinage. Interestingly, Williams, Gabourel and Simmons have been like members-in-waiting because they had been named to the Commission since 2014 but the body never got to do any work because members stepped down following the introduction of new laws which made appointees to board and committees politically exposed persons. Since then the Integrity Commission has been defunct and mostly due to the unwillingness from accountants to serve on the board. But Nestor Vasquez has stepped up to the plate. When the appointed came up at Wednesday’s Senate meeting, the Opposition expressed concern that the Government’s picks are well-known UDP sympathizers.

US Donates Fleet Of Vehicles For Law Enforcement
The United States Government donated a new fleet of vehicles to the Police Department this morning. The Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie and his district commanders gathered at the ITVET compound in Belize City where the new wheels valued at over U.S$830,000 were on display. Speaking at the handing over ceremony, U.S. Ambassador Carlos Moreno said that the donation is part of his Government’s commitment to the nation’s domestic security. Ambassador Carlos Moreno – United States Of America To Belize: “Now this is a reflection of the strong partnership between Belize and the United States and we share so many, many common goals, values, people together. Our priority is here in Belize are and have always been increasing citizen security which is in the rule of law, enhancing economic prosperity and promoting good governance, this particular transfer really involves citizen security and in my view although these are separate goals in another sense they are really interconnected. As of 2008, the United States has committed over 40 million dollars in programming and equipment and training to Belize to the CARSI program and these projects work to support law enforcement institutions to respond effectively to crime, they are also directed towards the justice sector.”

New Vehicles Will Allow COPS To Video Incidents
Of the 26 new vehicles, a great majority will not be leaving Belize City since 13 of them will be allocated there. The City of Belmopan will get 2 while the districts will get one each. While the distribution is one thing, the role the vehicles can play in policing the Police is another. As we said, they have built in cameras that will turn on every time the vehicle is in use and capture every moment of the Police’s duties. So will the footage taken by the cameras be made public to ensure that the Police are doing the right thing? The ComPol said he won’t make any promises. ComPol Allen Whylie – Commissioner of Police: “The cameras should always be on as long as the vehicle is operational, the camera should be on and as I said we’ve develop a number of Protocols is not the first time that we are having cameras in vehicles I believe that a previous fleet of Ford Rangers that we had received through the CARSI program also had cameras and so these cameras I believe it is a little better quality cameras but the Protocols have been develop and strengthen to ensure that there is accountability that they stay on and as I said in my earlier remarks we expect that as a result of these cameras the interaction between the police and the members of the community that they interact well be more professional.”

New Approach Needed To Tackle HIV AIDS
December 1st is globally designated as World AIDS Day. This year officials are commemorating efforts to reduce the epidemic under the message “Take the challenge, End AIDS”. Free testing was conducted in various parts of the country as national health officials promote testing and counselling. Director of Health Services, Dr. Marvin Manzanero, has been keeping an eye on the cases of HIV/AIDS in Belize. He indicated that the most recent statistics he has seen in June show that the prevalence of the sexually-transmitted disease is affecting both genders equally.


#519452 - 12/02/16 12:42 AM Re: Today's Belize News: December 2, 2016 [Re: Marty]  
Joined: Oct 1999
Posts: 56,698
Marty Offline
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LOVE FM

CARSI, 26 Trucks and the Police Department
Twenty six Isuzu DMax pickup trucks were officially handed over to the Belize Police Department this morning through the US Embassy. The almost two million Belize dollars were drawn from the Central America Regional Security Initiative (CARSI) Program. According to the Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs, Elodio Aragon Jr the vehicles were […]

Outcome Still Pending Into Investigation of Sexual Harassment Allegations in the GSU
At the end of October we told you of allegations surfacing within the Gang Suppression Unit where female officers were making allegations against two of their GSU colleagues. The matter was taken to the Ombudsman as well and to the Professional Standards Branch of the Belize Police Department. As a follow up, we asked Minister […]

Aragon and Lovell Assess the Police Department and Its Policies
Six weeks ago the junior politician and former Deputy Commissioner of Police, Elodio Aragon Junior rose to the rank of Minister of State in the Ministry of Home Affairs. It is a posting that many had predicted from the third victory of the Barrow administration considering his familiarity with the Belize Police Department and his […]

Belize Joins Hands in Commemorating World AIDS Day
For the last twenty eight years, December 1 has been dubbed World AIDS Day with the objective to remind citizens of the impacts of HIV/AIDS and the importance of preventative measures. It is a global initiative and in Belize, the Ministry of Health partnered with several agencies to commemorate the day with a mobile testing […]

Emergency Ops Centre for Crooked Tree from Uncle Sam
On Wednesday, US Ambassador to Belize, Carlos Moreno, handed over an Emergency Operations Center to the Government of Belize. The state of the art facility is located in Crooked Tree Village. The facility will bring together key emergency response and disaster relief officials from NEMO, the Ministries of Labor, Health, and Education, the Belize Defense […]

US Ambassador and Pending Donations to Belize
With only fifty two days left in office, Ambassador for the United States to Belize, Carlos Moreno says there are still a few more projects in Belize under his leadership. CARLOS MORENO “The one that I can think of right now are the provision of additional vehicles that would include motorcycles and bicycles, I know […]

Belize Ranks 18/30 for Global Marijuana Consumption
In a report produced by the Adam Smith Institute of the United Kingdom Belize was listed as one of the top thirty countries from around the world that consume marijuana. Belize made it at number eighteen with a reported eight point four-five percent of its population using the drug. Iceland ranked at number one with […]

Senators Debate on Belize/Guyana Relations
During yesterday’s Senate meeting Senators ratified a framework agreement between the Government of Belize and the Government of Guyana. That agreement seeks to deepen the bilateral agreement between the two countries. This means that Senators were asked to give the go ahead for a legal framework to be created in order to encourage cooperation through […]

Lighting Up Downtown Belize City for Christmas
The Belize City Council is preparing for its annual Christmas Tree Lighting Ceremony scheduled to take place on Friday, December 2. City Councillor Hyacinth Latchman-Cuellar spoke of tomorrow’s event. HYACINTH CUELLAR “Tomorrow we have the annual tree lighting ceremony this is sponsored by Coca Cola and the Belize City Council. It will be very special […]

Remembering Andy’s 56th Birthday
Tomorrow, Friday, a memorial mass will be held in several communities to celebrate the 56th birthday of musical icon and Cultural Ambassador Andy Palacio. Leading the charge is the Andy Palacio Tribute Committee. Love News spoke with member of the Committee, Cynthia Cayetano. CYNTHIA CAYETANO “We know that it’s very important to honor the memory […]

The Guardian

26 new vehicles for Belize Police Department
On Thursday December 1, the Ministry of Home Affairs will receive 26 new Isuzu D-Max pickup trucks valued at 1.6 million dollars. The donation comes through the Central American Regional Security Initiative (CARSI). On Wednesday the Guardian spoke to U.S. Ambassador, H.E. Carlos Moreno who explained that over the past 8 years the U.S. through CARSI has donated over 30 million dollars worth of equipment to various law enforcement arms in Belize. He said that these donations are very important as they help to forge a closer partnership between Belize and the U.S. and that one of their main priorities is citizen security. He noted that when the State Department is looking at contributing to Belize they keep in mind proposals that fit the overarching goals of the U.S. which looks at prosperity and economic development programs as well as programs to divert youth from crime as well as promote entrepreneurship and leadership skill and to help to promote good governance.

Suspected drug plane lands and takes off
Police are sure that a plane landed illegally in Belize, and the smugglers who facilitated it, managed to move some sort of illicit cargo. All signs point to a drug smuggling operation, but police are unable to confirm that since, by the time they arrived in the area, these unknown underworld figures were already gone. In the predawn hours of Tuesday, November 29, Hattieville police received intelligence that there was some sort of aircraft which had entered Belizean airspace, and it was flying low near the Coastal Road, as if attempting to make a landing. The police responded as quickly as they could, and they ended up searching the entire area. They soon came across a makeshift airstrip, which was obviously created to run illegal cargo. A search of the area led them to 20 drums. 16 of them were filled with aviation fuel, and the other 4 were empty, which confirms that the aircraft landed, and it was refueled. The officers found wires, lights, batteries, and canvasses, which they believe were used to assist the pilot of the smuggling plane to safely land. The officers also found seats, which they believe came from this aircraft. Those were thrown aside, as if to make room for whatever cargo these smugglers intended to transport. The discarding of the seats is an indicator to narcotics experts that the cargo was most likely drugs, but there is no real means of confirming this.

Five years imprisonment for “disgusting” sex offender
“You are a sick individual! You are disgusting …,” were the words Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith had for 39-year-old John Francisco Leslie before she found him guilty of inserting his penis and ejaculating into the mouth of a five-year-old little girl. The incident occurred on the afternoon of April 12, 2016. In trial on Thursday, November 24, the child testified from behind a board so she didn’t have to face the offender and others present in the courtroom. She said that she was playing with her friends when Leslie took her inside the house. Once inside, “John touched me on my private part and he put his penis into my mouth,” testified the child. He made her stand on a chair, instructed her to open up her mouth and then put his penis inside and ejaculated. After this was done, the child said she ran outside to play but felt like she wanted to vomit. She decided to go to her mother instead and told her what had happened. The mother took the child to the police station where a social worker intervened and the child gave her report to police. In court the child was also able to describe Leslie and how she got to know him prior to that day.

Another Beg-A-Ton, Belizeans are fed up with Wade
Belizeans were on Saturday, again treated to the circus of Plus TV publicly begging for it to stay afloat. The principal of the TV station shamelessly paraded himself and others to beg from the Belizean public in order for their financial expenses could be met. Now the event was not any that had any real value to anyone other than for Louis “Beg-a-tonto” Wade’s selfish yearnings to keep spewing political propaganda on his tv station. Day in and day out this so called pastor attacks any and every initiative by the UDP government in a relentless manner. So rabid is he that his advertisers that he used to depend on a few years ago (a time when he seemed impartial) have all left him. He is now left without any financing. He is left to do a yearly beg-a-ton where he whines and pleas to the public to help him with his expenses.

Corozal gets a new polyclinic
On Friday November 25, the Ministry of Health officially inaugurated the Corozal Polyclinic II. Located at the Corozal Community Hospital Compound on Santa Rita Hill in Corozal Town, the facility is expected to greatly improve healthcare services provided in that municipality. The retrofitting of the clinic came after the government of Belize invested some $530,000 into it through the National Health Insurance Program (NHI). Under construction for the past 9 months, the new polyclinic will offer expanded healthcare to residents of Corozal Town and surrounding areas.

Hon. Edmond Castro delivers more houses in Burrell Boom and Sandhill Will receive another Nemo building from the United States Embassy
Yesterday, November 28, 2016, Minister of National Emergency Management and Area Representative for Belize Rural North Honourable Edmond Castro was in the villages of Burrell Boom and Sandhill handing over more houses to victims of Hurricane Earl in those villages. Honourable Castro was accompanied by NEMO Regional Coordinator for Cayo and Belize Districts Al Westby, as well as NEMO Coordinator for Belize Rural North Alphius Gillett. Last week, he similarly handed over houses to residents in the village of Crooked Tree. Honourable Edmond Castro will be back in Crooked Tree tomorrow, November 30, 2016, to receive from the United States Embassy a sturdy, newly constructed building in that village, which will serve as a spacious, well-outfitted hurricane shelter for the area.

Historic Structure Destroyed by Flames
One of the last few colonial style treasures went up in smoke on Sunday morning, November 27. Residents of the Fort Street area reports seeing wild flames flying out of the kitchen window of the Chateau Caribbean Hotel building around 8 on Sunday morning. The fire quickly spread to the ceiling and second floor of the aged structure. By the time fire officials arrived on the scene there was not much they could do to save the building. The mission at that point was to contain the blaze and prevent damages to other iconic structures nearby. At the conclusion of the fire fight, the second floor had collapsed and the original structure was completely destroyed. There were no casualties, fortunately. However, guests were rattled after being rushed out of the burning building. Many were having or getting ready for breakfast and that was interrupted by instruction to flee for life. Several people lost valuable property but the preservation of life is goal number one.

Citrus growers expect price increase
The Belize Citrus Growers Association has announced to the general membership that they can expect a price increase for their products. In a release dated the 30th November 2016 the association stated: “The new Estimated Final Price for Oranges has increased from $2.5929 per pound solid to $2.7272 per pound solid and the advance price of 65% has increased from $1.6854 per pound solid to $1.7727per pound solid.” It continued by stating that, “The new estimated price is equivalent to $16.0903 per box, up from $15.2981 per box…” This surely speaks to the fact that the citrus industry is showing an upward trend and doing much better than the last few seasons when factors such as citrus leprosies, the tristeza virus, and the Huanglongbing disease better known as HLB or citrus greening caused the industry to experience great loss.

Belize Coast Guard- 11 years and getting stronger
The Belize Coast Guard is now in existence for 11 years and on Friday, November 25, the Government of Belize joined in an anniversary ceremony to celebrate their growth and development since being commissioned back in 2005. The Coast Guard, which was originally named the “Belize National Coast Guard”, came into existence when the Belize Defence Force Maritime Wing became an entirely new arm of the Belizean law enforcement not under the military. Current Commandant, Admiral John Borland, recounted to the press that on November 28, 2005, the Coast Guard was formed, and 50 officers from the Police and the BDF received donations of 5 vessels. The US Government provided a lot of funding and training to these officers, and now, nearing the end of 2016, the Coast Guard has grown to 350 men with 15 boats, and a number of bases in different parts of the country, and their headquarters in Belize City. The organization has also extended the reach of its law enforcement capabilities, starting from a coastal unit, and now, they are able to patrol the country’s entire marine environment, all the way to the limit of Belize’s exclusive economic zone.

1.2 million dollar hurricane shelter for Crooked Tree
The United States Government through the military laison office of Southcom handed over a multipurpose disaster relief building to the people of Crooked Tree. At ceremonies held at the village, the 1.2 million dollar investment was handed over and Ambassador to Belize, H.E. Carlos Moreno told the Guardian that the building will be a place of refuge during times of disaster and can also serve as a multipurpose building for community events. The structure was constructed to withstand the strongest of hurricanes to hit the village and Moreno noted that it is an investment that symbolizes the strong bi-lateral relationship between the U.S. and Belize. For his part, Area Representative for Belize Rural North, Hon. Edmond Castro explained that because Crooked Tree is an island the effects of not only hurricanes but also floods have had major impacts on the community where people had to be moved from low lying areas. There was always a place lacking to house people when they are in need. He said that he was thankful for the investment.

UB Engineering Students Win Structures Competition in Mexico
Students of the Engineering Department, from the Faculty of Science of Technology (FST) of the University of Belize are the 2016 champions of the “XVIII Concurso De Diseño Y Construccion De Modelos Estructurales, V Fase Internacional”, hosted by the Instituto Tecnologico De Chetumal (ITCH) in Quintana Roo Mexico from 23-25th November 2016. The competition is hosted every year and UB has officially participated for the past 5 years. Preparations for this competition included students participating in the UB Engineering Department’s 8th Annual Macaroni Competition held on 13th and 14th October at the University’s Freetown Road campus in Belize City. The top two teams represent UB in Chetumal. These students are second year engineering students and they competed with 3rd and 4th year students at the ITCH.

Hon. Patrick Faber in Cuba attending Fidel Castro’s Funeral
Currently in Cuba among the hundreds of thousands of Cubans and other leaders in the region is Hon. Patrick Faber who is representing the government and people of Belize at funeral services being held for former Cuban President Fidel Castro. Castro passed away in Cuba at age 90 on Saturday November 26 after suffering from illness. His funeral service commenced on Wednesday, November 30th, when his ashes were transported via a motorcade from Havana to Santiago de Cuba where it will be delivered at its final resting place. The motorcade is symbolic as it was the same journey Castro took back in January of 1959 during his rebellion known as the Caravana de la Libertad.

Minister Castro upgrades Flowers Bank Road
At the last Flowers Bank Day, Hon. Edmond Castro, Minister of National Emergency Management and Area Representative for Belize Rural North, made a promise to residents of the historic village that he would lobby tirelessly to improve the road infrastructure in their village. Less than six months later, a project is underway for the upgrading of the Flowers Bank Access Road to “all-weather standard”. According to a release from NEMO, the project is part of a flood mitigation program which Minister Castro intends to carry out throughout his constituency and expand to other flood-prone areas countrywide up until the start of the next Hurricane Season on June 1, 2017. In November, 2015, rain pounded Belize for several days and Flowers Bank was one of the villages in central and southern Belize severely impacted by flooding after water from the Cayo District flowed into the Belize River Valley. Residents were cut off from the rest of the country as the only road and bridge in and out of the village was under water. The village does not have a grocery shop so residents have to travel to stock up on commodities. The flood made this impossible so residents had to be provided with ration from NEMO for a few days.

Friends for Conservation and Development holds AGM
The Friends for Conservation and Development FCD, as Co-managers of the 423,000 acre Chiquibul Forest Reserve, held its Annual General Meeting on Saturday of this past weekend at the San Ignacio Resort Hotel. In opening the meeting, Rafael Manzanero Executive Director of FCD set the focus of the group as to improve the ecological and cultural integrity of the Western Chiquibul-Maya Mountains. FCD manages the Chiquibul National Park along with the Forestry Department, which is a regulatory agency in Belize. Board member of the FCD Dr. Filiberto Penados took the opportunity to announce that FCD recently completed its five year (2016 to 2020) strategic plan. He informed that FCD has been investing in the development of a tourism development plan.

Integrity Commission and Anti-Corruption Convention goes through Senate
Prime Minister Dean Barrow and the Government of Belize have made good on two promises made to the teachers during their 11-day strike for good governance. The Integrity Commission has been re-appointed as an oversight for elected politicians, and Belize has the necessary authority to accede to the United Nations Convention Against Corruption (UNCAC). At the November 30th Senate Meeting, the Senate approved the appointment of Marilyn Williams, who will act as the Chairperson of the Integrity Committee. She is the former Director of the Financial Intelligence Unit, and a practicing attorney. She is more than qualified for the job since, she was already leading the country’s law enforcement agency which focused primarily on financial crimes. She is joined by others nominated by Prime Minister Dean Barrow, namely, Armead Gabourel, Lisbeth Delgado, and Wilmot Simmons. The Senate also approved the two members nominated by the Opposition, PUP. They are Melissa Balderamos Mahler and Claudet Grinage.

Volunteer Special Constables deliver two motorcycles in Cayo
The Cayo Special Constables Committee launched on Wednesday of this week its motorcycle patrol unit. Coming as a result of fund raising efforts by the Volunteer Special Constables VSC and the Cayo business community, two new Panther motor cycles ($2,575.00 each) were delivered at the San Ignacio Police Station to further reduce crime in Western Belize. Alberto Palma, Chair of the VSC was on site today to state that he was a proud member of the Cayo Special Constables Committee. In his address this afternoon, Superintendent Anthony Rosado, Commanding Officer of the San Ignacio Police Formation noted that his jurisdiction is one of the largest in Belize, with 38 villages and 53,000 inhabitants. “It will surely complement the formation policing strategies,” said Rosado of the donated motorcycles.

Message of Condolence from the Rt. Hon. Dean O. Barrow, Prime Minister of Belize, on the passing of Commander-In-Chief Fidel Castro Ruz
Dear President Raúl Castro Ruz, This note is penned with a heavy heart. You have lost your brother, the Cuban People have lost their avatar, and humanity has lost a giant for the ages. As a leader, bestriding history, Fidel proved, in unending ways, his love for the Cuban people, and all people, especially those suffering from injustice or neglect. His leadership of Cuba was one replete with the sacrifices made by your nation: whether in pursuit of its own sovereignty or the liberation of Southern Africa, or in the saving of hundreds of thousands of lives around the world by copious humanitarian aid, or in the everyday work of the Cuban Medical Brigade, or in the education outreach to so many from literacy to the post-graduate level. Because of the fraternity and self-sacrifice deployed by Fidel and Cuba, the people of ‘Nuestra America’ and the globe owe an unpayable debt to the Commander-in-Chief.

PUP will have a new leader in 2017
PUP is about to have another barn burner, as it now looks like they are about to change leader again. This will make it 2 years in a row that they have changed their leader and the sixth time in the last twenty years that they changed leader. For clarity sake let’s go over the various leadership changes and how they took place. After the PUP lost the 1993 elections, they blamed George Price for that loss and kicked him out. In what could only be described like a Cosa Nostra move, they sent Price’s niece Dolores to deliver the kiss to him. A nasty convention followed where Said Musa became leader after he bested Pistolas Marin. Said remained leader for 12 years included in those 12 were the 10 most corrupted years in the life of Belize’s governmental history. He was replaced after they lost in 2008. Having been given the choice to step down rather than be kicked out. He chose the former.

Santa Elena Sports Complex opened
The Santa Elena Sports Complex has become the latest feature of attraction for the Cayo District. Built at a cost of 2.5 million dollars within an area of 13.42 acres, the Santa Elena Sports Complex was officially opened on Sunday to welcoming reviews from its nearby residents. On hand to witness the opening were the Hon. Patrick Faber, Deputy Prime Minister, the Hon. Rene Montero, Minister of Public Works and Representative Cayo Central Division as well as Christy Mastry, the General Manager of the Belize Infrastructure Limited. The Santa Elena Sports Complex is now the third and final facility to be delivered to the Twin Towns of San Ignacio and Santa Elena by the Government of Belize under the execution of Belize Infrastructure Limited. In his keynote address, the Hon. Patrick Faber said that the new facility is the tangible fruits of the Petrocaribe monies. He said it was his hope that the facilities be used to develop our young people and generate income for the surrounding areas.

U.S. Ambassador Carlos Moreno bids farewell
The United States underwent elections on November 8 and with its outcome, from an administrative perspective there will be significant changes in the way things are carried out in the country. And while those changes will take place immediately after Donald Trump officially takes office early next year, in Belize there will also be a change in the guard at the U.S. embassy. The Guardian spoke to U.S. ambassador, H.E. Carlos Moreno who explained that he was appointed by President Barrack Obama and invariably as the president leaves office so too will Moreno. He explained that, “my tenure has been fantastic. It’s like no other position that I have ever held. It’s been a very diverse, very exciting and very beneficial because I have learnt so much about Belize, its geography, its people, its customs, its food. There is no way I could have had this kind of wonderful experience without having first hand being an ambassador.”

Dorian Blair charged for Chinese business robbery
Jing Xiao Tan, owner of T-Supermarket in the Lords Bank area, was held at gunpoint and robbed on Monday, November 21. He was stripped of his 9 mm pistol and $3,200 cash. According to Tan, he was standing at the entrance of his supermarket around 9:10 p.m. and as he was about to close for the night three men ambushed him. One of the men was armed with a handgun. They demanded that he hand over his gun and cash. Fearing for his life, he complied with the gunman and handed over his 9 mm pistol and cash. The robbers then fled the scene. Police investigation into the robbery led to the arrest of Dorian Blair, 21. He was detained by police on Tuesday, November 22. At the time of his detention Blair had a laptop computer. Police looked into the laptop and it matched the description of one that was reported stolen by Edgar Young. Young reported to police that his house was burglarized from the rooftop and an assortment of jewelry and electronic devices were stolen, including the laptop. When police turned on the laptop they saw a picture of Edgar Young. Blair was charged for the robbery of Jing Xiao Tan and handling stolen goods for the laptop.

Custom broker charged for theft of client’s eleven HD televisions
Justin Longsworth, 29, customs broker of Valdez Global Limited, is out on bail after he was charged with one count of theft and one count of handling stolen goods on Thursday, November 24. Allegations being made against Longsworth are that on November 3, 2016, he took eleven 49-inch flat screen televisions that he was supposed to clear for the Radisson Fort George Hotel and Marina. According to police reports, Valdez Global Limited firm was obtained to clear the televisions for the Radisson along with other items. However, it was later noticed that the eleven televisions were missing. On November 10 the owner of the brokage firm visited the CIB office and reported that Longsworth, his employee, was given the task to clear the items through Customs and when he was asked about them he said that he had received no televisions.

Charge against Raheem Marsden upgraded to murder
Belize City resident Raheem Marsden, 24, has been on remand at the Belize Central Prison since July 25 of this year for charges of attempted murder, dangerous harm and use of deadly means of harm upon Alfonso Castillo, 30, of Victoria Street. However, the day he was to be released from the Karl Heusner Memorial Hospital, Castillo died of complications he suffered after being stabbed on Thursday, July 21. The doctors were optimistic that he would have healed from that injury but things took a turn for the worst on Thursday, July 28, and he passed away while undergoing treatment. The charges against Marsden were not upgraded until Tuesday, November 28. Marsden appeared unrepresented before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith on Tuesday and was read the upgraded charge of murder. Prosecutor in the case, Inspector Egbert Castillo, was ordered to have disclosure ready by January of 2017. Marsden’s Preliminary Inquiry is set for January 6, 2017.

Murder in Gardenia
Nelson Zelaya, a 27 year-old father from Gardenia Village in the Belize District, was shot and killed at his home, where his kids and his pregnant girlfriend were at the time. The very unfortunate incident happened on Thursday, November 24, just before midday. Zelaya was reportedly in his yard standing under a plum tree. His home is located at mile 21 and a half on the Phillip Goldson highway. According to police, he was fetching firewood, and while he had his guard down, a gunman crept up on him, and shot him at close range in the face. There are reports which say that the gunman was with an accomplice, and that Zelaya’s 3-year-old daughter may have seen the attack on her father. Zelaya’s other children and his girlfriend were inside their home, and as soon as the gunmen ran off, the police and emergency personnel were contacted for help. They arrived very quickly, and Zelaya was rushed to the KHMH for medical attention. He succumbed to his injuries shortly after reaching the hospital.

Phillip Samuels charged for stealing Ford Escape
Phillip Samuels, 30, is out on bail after he was accused of stealing Daniel Sanchez’s black four door Ford Escape. He was unrepresented in court when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith and was read charges of theft, handling stolen goods and damage to property. According to police reports, Sanchez parked the vehicle in front of Lumina Bar on Barracks Road on Sunday, November 27, with a woman waiting in the passenger seat. When he returned the vehicle was missing. The woman said that someone forced himself into the driver’s seat and was about to drive off when she jumped out of the vehicle in fear. The individual then made off with the Escape. Police later recovered the vehicle but it was significantly damaged. Based on an estimate, it will take about $3,500 to repair the vehicle. Phillip Samuels was allegedly seen leaving the area where the vehicle was found and he was in possession of the vehicle keys when apprehended.

Louis Tucker remanded for sexual assault
Louis Tucker, 54, is at the Belize Central Prison on remand following an arraignment for sexual assault allegations. The arrest came after a female reported to police that she was walking on the street on Tuesday, November 22, when Tucker touched her private area inappropriately. She was disgusted by his action and visited the police station to make a formal complaint. Tucker was arrested after the alleged victim requested court action. In court on Friday, November 25, Tucker was unrepresented and pleaded not guilty to a single charge of sexual assault when he appeared before Chief Magistrate Anne Marie Smith. He told the Chief, “I never touched her. I just passed and touched her accidentally.” Cpl. Christopher Smith, prosecutor in the case, had heavy objection to bail. He submitted that the prosecution’s case against Tucker is very strong and this is the not the first time the woman has made such report against Tucker.

El Salvador wins Central American women’s softball champions
The Annual Central American Women’s Softball championship was staged from November 25-27, 2016, in Guatemala City, Guatemala. The championship saw the participation of six of the seven countries from Central America which includes Belize, Costa Rica, El Salvador, Nicaragua, Panama and the host country Guatemala. Belize was represented by the Belize Bank Bulldogs, the National Softball Champions of Belize. On Friday 25th November, all the countries played a total of 3 games on the schedule. In the first game of the day, Belize Bank Bulldogs defeated Costa Rica by the score of 5-4. In game two for the Belize Bank Bulldogs, the Belize Bank Bulldogs fell to Nicaragua by the score of 6-5. Nicaragua then went on to win over Costa Rica by the score of 10-0 and in the final game of the day that was played at the Carlos Larranaga softball pitch for the day Panama defeated Nicaragua by the score of 13-5. Meanwhile, at the Carlos Cano pitch Guatemala defeated El Salvador by the score of 4-3. El Salvador then went on to win over Panama by the score of 4-3. Guatemala won over Costa Rice by the score of 15-0 and in the final game of the day Guatemala defeated the Belize Bank Bulldogs by the score of 8-0.

2017 National Elite Basketball League season to commence on January 13
The Commissioner of the National Elite Basketball League Karim Juan informed the general public that the NEBL will commence its fourth season on Friday 13th January, 2017. The fourth season will see eight teams competing for the top prize. The teams that will be competing in the 2017 campaign will be the Orange Walk Running Rebels, Belize Hurricanes, Belize City No Limit, San Pedro Tiger Sharks, Belmopan Bandits, Dangriga Warriors, Cayo Western Ballaz and a new franchise from Chetumal, Mexico. It is noted that games will be played in Chetumal, and the Chetumal team will also play games in Belize, using the same home and away format. For the up-coming season, each team will have a shot clock, which will greatly enhance the competitive nature of the game.

Belize Defence Force wins again in Premier League play
The Premier League of Belize Opening Season competition continued over the weekend with four more games on the schedule. On Sunday 27th November at the MCC Grounds in Belize City, the Belize Defence Force continued on its march to the playoffs when it won its second game in as many outings when it defeated the host team FC Belize by the score of 2-0. The goals for the Belize Defence Force were scored by Trimayne Harris in the 22nd minute of play and then by Orlando Trapp in the 90+1 minute of the game. At the Victor Sanchez Stadium in Punta Gorda Town, the Freedom fighters blanked Wagiya FC by the score of 3-0. The goals for the Freedom Fighters were scored by Alexander Peters in the 20th minute of play and by Jarren Lambey in the 26th and 71st minute of play.

Belize Defence Force clip Placencia Assassins FC
The Premier League of Belize 2016 Opening Season competition continued on Wednesday 23rd November, 2016, with four games on the schedule. In the game played at the MCC Grounds between the Belize Defence Force and the visiting Placencia Assassins, the BDF edged out the Placencia Assassins by the score of 2-1. The host team Belize Defence Force made it onto the scoreboard in the 43rd minute of play in the first half of the game when Darrel Lambey scored the 1st goal of the game to give his team a 1-0 lead. It was not until well into the second half of the game that Placencia Assassins was able to penetrate the BDF’s defence that allowed Ashley Torres to score the equalising goal in the 65th minute of play to tie the score at 1-1. However, Vallan Symns was able to convert a penalty kick in the 73rd minute of play into a goal for the Belize Defence Force’s 2-1 victory.

WORDS OF LIFE with Barry Fraser
Over 700 years before the birth of Jesus, the prophet Micah wrote, “You, Bethlehem Ephrathah, though you are small among the clans of Judah, out of you will come for me one who will be ruler over Israel, whose origins are from old, from ancient days, [days of eternity]. He will stand and shepherd his flock in the strength of the Lord God Yahweh, in the majesty of the name of the Lord his God.” [Micah 5: 2 & 4] This is a Messianic prophesy. Jesus fulfilled this prophesy when he was born in Bethlehem, the birthplace of King David. [Matthew 2:1&2] But how could this prophesy come to reality, if Mary and Joseph lived in Nazareth? Luke 2:1, 3 & 6, records, “In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. And everyone went to his own town to register. While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born.”

The Only One of Its Kind Naïa Resort and Spa
“This place looks exactly as in the pictures!” was the very first satisfactory thought that raised the bar of expectations upon my arrival. Can you imagine experiencing all that Belize has to offer at one unique destination? I am proud to validate that for the very first time, international tourists and Belizean travelers have the opportunity to experience the flawlessness of nature and the richness of Belizean heritage all in one. Naïa Resort and Spa, located 17 miles along the Placencia peninsula, is not only known for illuminating the intensity of its unique title, but it is also known for marvelously captivating the diversity of a Belizean culture through artistry and architectural design. The word Naïa is used to describe a free spirit, connected to large bodies of fresh water and dedicated to engaging in adventurous experiences. Interestingly, Naïa Resort and Spa wonderfully represents this in its entirety. The mastermind behind such detailed elements, Stewart Krohn, definitely ensured to give visitors a sharp taste of Belize’s culture through the Mayan artifacts display, Belizean inspired paintings and carvings, handmade lamp shades made from what is culturally known as “basket tie-tie”, and bath products made from the Gumbo limbo and citrus plant products. Being engulfed by instruments that scream of the indigenous culture of Belize certainly imprinted a “Made in Belize” tattoo in my mind. It was gratifying to learn that all those products were locally made by very talented Belizeans. Modern technology is incorporated into each studio beach house, ensuring the comfort of all visitors. A deep-soaking tub and an outdoor shower are impeccably designed to provide a personal spa area in each guest accommodation. The beach house was undoubtedly the perfect representation of ‘a home away from home’.

Youth Talks - Student Union
And just who gives the students a voice? That is the question that the BNTU and government probably don’t ask. A vast number of students are unhappy or disagree with the actions being taken by both parties. It seems quite ironic that students, the majority, the people who will mostly be affected by the entire feud, are not even slightly represented in the decision ¬making. This is because of the ignorance that most adults have, that children are simply “too young” to understand. That the problems of this country just couldn’t possibly be understood by anyone under 18. Before I go any further, I’d like to recognize the efforts of the BNTU and thank them for trying to better the country, but should it be at the expense of our children’s education? Back in October, two weeks were lost. Think of the fourth formers and standard six students preparing for their CXC’s and PSE respectively. The vast amount of information that is covered on those exams, are barely covered during the school year. Imagine trying to squeeze that knowledge in now. SBA’s and school work is being piled on, trying to make up for that time lost, which is not really fair. A strike is a form of industrial action that can be used to better the workers conditions. Place emphasis on the workers.

Breaking Belize NewsPJ

Vega and Pitts haven’t reimbursed GoB for land transactions
Attorney at law, Sharon Pitts, and Andre Vega, son of former Deputy Prime Minister, Gaspar Vega, are yet to return the monies government paid out to them in a controversial land transaction that lacked much grace. The Government of Belize wrote them at the […]

Most destructive hurricane season in over 10 years comes to an end
The 2016 Atlantic hurricane season ended yesterday. The season saw 15 named storms of which 7 became hurricanes. The season was described as the “deadliest” and most destructive since 2005. This year, Hurricane Matthew was the strongest storm reaching Category 5 in October. It was […]

106 primary school students graduate from Gang Resistance Education and Training Program in Cayo
A total of one hundred and six standard six students from Santa Elena Primary School today graduated from the Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) Program. Present at the ceremony were representatives from the United States Embassy, GREAT Program evaluators from the United States, […]

Primary School Students in Cayo benefit from Gang Resistance Education and Training program
Standard five students from seven primary schools in the Cayo District are benefiting from the Gang Resistance Education and Training (GREAT) program. Today, two evaluators from the GREAT Program in the U.S. visited St. Andrew’s Anglican Primary School in San Ignacio Town to evaluate the […]

Belize’s economic woes continue – recession enters third quarter
Yesterday, the Statistical Institute of Belize (SIB) released its official report on Belize’s economy. The figures show that Belize’s economy continue on a downward trend since January 2016. For the third successive quarter, the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) showed negative growth. In the […]

Toucans caged up in Harvest Caye?
Reports reaching our newsroom are that 4 of Belize’s national birds are reportedly being kept in a cage in Harvest Caye for cruise passengers to view. A source told BBN that there were reportedly five toucans on the Caye but one has died. In […]

Letter to the Editor: Businessman unjustly harassed by GST Department
The following is a letter submitted to the editor by Andre Perez ;Casa Pan Dulce Bakery Yesterday a good friend and brother of mine who is in the same industry as I am was “dragged” to court according to the media to answer charges of failure to […]

PG woman loses house to fire
A woman from PG lost her house to a fire on November 29, 2016. According to reports, Linda Maithe Gomez, 42, of Bribri Street, Indian Ville area, Punta Gorda reported to police that on November 29, 2016 about 12:37 p.m., she left her residence […]

Student found with homemade firearm saved from jail time
Two weeks ago, nineteen year old student Brandon Smith was arrested and charged for keeping a prohibited firearm and ammunition without gun license. Police found the firearm and ammunition on Smith when they searched him. Smith spent 15 days in jail but yesterday, Chief […]

Guatemalans continue to exploit the Chiquibul National Park
Last week Friday in the Ceibo Grande Creek area (about 5 miles from the Belize and Guatemala border) of the Chiquibul National Park two Guatemalans were caught panning for gold. A joint patrol of BDF, FCD park rangers, and police detained: Anibal Quiix Cucul […]

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Bugs of Belize
There are many different bugs of Belize. Over the course of my time here, I have enjoyed snapping many a bug picture as you will see below. So many interesting shapes and varieties turn up in the most random places. Aside from the creepy crawlers, sometimes bugs are going around are the microscopic “people hurting” kind. A few folks on Ambergris Caye have recently or are currently experiencing what I have dubbed the “sucker bug”. Aside from the creepy crawlers, sometimes bugs are going around are the microscopic “people hurting” kind. A few folks on Ambergris Caye have recently or are currently experiencing what I have dubbed the “sucker bug”.

New eats? Belize’s Ministry Foreign Affairs host Indonesian Food Fest
The common ingredient of coconut in Indonesian cooking makes Indonesian food very palatable to Belizean palates, though Indonesia is halfway around the world, requiring 30 hours of air travel to get there. Belize and Indonesia established diplomatic relations in 2014, and Ministry of Foreign Affairs collaborated in Indonesia’s initiative to bring the taste of Indonesian cuisine to Belize, by hosting an Indonesian Food Festival at the Samuel Haynes Institute on Mahogany Street in Belize City last Saturday. Indonesia’s Ambassador to Belize The common ingredient of coconut in Indonesian cooking makes Indonesian food very palatable to Belizean palates explained that his country is an archipelago of 17,000 islands, with 262 Million people of 800 different ethnic groups! A chef from the Indonesian Embassy in Mexico City had accompanied the Ambassador, and he taught a sampling of Indonesian recipes to the Belizean cooks at the Samuel Haynes Institute.

Scuba Dive Turneffe Atoll in Belize
One of just three coral atolls located off the coast of Belize, Turneffe Atoll is one of the most beautiful natural locations in the country and a diverse marine habitat home to more than 500 species of fish, 65 species of corals, and hundreds of species of sea birds, mammals, and invertebrates. The atoll is a protected marine area consisting of more than 150 mangrove islands as well as larger cayes (islands) that have a forest or savanna landscape. The shallow waters and huge areas of seagrasses make the atoll a popular spawning aggregation site for fish and amphibious species. Turneffe Atoll is the name for an area measuring more than 300 square miles that encompasses dozens of tiny islands known as the Turneffe Islands. The unique marine environment play a critical role in the health of the reef, used by lobster, conch, crocodiles, fish, and turtle species as a nesting and breeding site. The crystal clear waters and stunning diversity of marine flora and fauna make the Turneffe Atoll one of the best places on the planet to enjoy scuba diving and snorkeling. The infamous pirate Blackbeard once used the Turneffe Atoll as a base of operations as he harassed ships traveling between Mexico and the Bay of Honduras. The Turneffe Atoll is located approximately 20 miles offshore of Belize City, directly southeast of Ambergris Caye and Caye Caulker. The Turneffe Atoll is part of the larger Belize Barrier Reef, the second-largest barrier reef in the world and the largest in the Western Hemisphere.

International Sourcesizz

Princess Cruises Hit With Largest-Ever Criminal Penalty For 'Deliberate Pollution'
Princess Cruise Lines will pay a $40 million fine for "deliberate pollution of the seas and intentional acts to cover it up," according to the Department of Justice, which calls it "the largest-ever criminal penalty involving deliberate vessel pollution." The California-based cruise operator also agreed to plead guilty to seven felony charges over illegal practices on five ships dating back, in at least one case, to 2005. The Justice Department said in a statement that Princess illegally dumped contaminated waste and oil from its Caribbean Princess ship for eight years — a practice that was exposed by a whistleblowing engineer in 2013. The engineer quit his job over the dumping when the ship docked in the U.K. and alerted British authorities, who notified the U.S. Coast Guard. He said other engineers were using a device called a "magic pipe" to bypass the ship's water treatment system and unload oily waste into the ocean. Princess Cruises is a subsidiary of Miami-based Carnival Corp., and the plea agreement requires ships from eight of Carnival's companies to submit to court-supervised monitoring of environmental compliance for the next five years.

National Geographic Announces World Legacy Awards Finalists
The 15 finalists of the National Geographic World Legacy Awards were unveiled yesterday. The World Legacy Awards, a partnership between National Geographic and ITB Berlin, showcase the leading travel and tourism companies, organizations and destinations — ranging from entire countries to small islands and from urban hotels to jungle retreats — driving the sustainable tourism transformation of the global travel industry. Among the 2017 National Geographic World Legacy Awards finalists are: The Lodge at Chaa Creek, Belize – Belize's pioneer eco-resort demonstrates that putting local people first benefits employees, villages, and its own bottom line. The Lodge provides economic benefits to community projects across the nation, directing 10 percent of all room revenue to support social and environmental programs.

TULUM, MEXICO: HOW AN ECO-CHIC RETREAT BECAME A DEN OF CORRUPTION
Known for its beautiful beaches, Tulum has become increasingly popular, and its property prices have soared. Over the past five years, as Tulum has become increasingly popular and property prices have soared, environmentalists and residents like Caro have been battling business moguls and powerful politicians who are colluding to develop the land as quickly as possible. Meanwhile, the city’s infrastructure is floundering, with raw sewage spilling into one of the largest underground river systems in the world. The damage may soon get much worse—a massive new real estate project with a murky past could see Tulum’s population explode tenfold in less than 10 years. As Olmo Torres-Talamante, a local biologist, tells Newsweek, “This is the dark side of paradise.” Others feel frustrated that Tulum’s rampant growth has led to this. In June, Larissa Juarez was evicted from the cabin her family built in 1999, when there was just a handful of hotels. “It was a place to be close to nature. We didn’t even have electricity for years,” she says. “Just candles.” But five years ago, developers began building more and more hotels on the strip. “Everything changed when the New Yorkers arrived,” she says. Tulum has become so popular with young American tourists that it’s been referred to as “the Williamsburg of Mexico,” after the hipster neighborhood in Brooklyn.

Mapped: The countries that smoke the most cannabis
Belize is number 18 on the top countries for cannabis smokers. A new report claims the UK government should legalise marijuana because it's “the only solution to crime and addiction problems”. The strongly-worded study - titled The Tide Effect: How the World is Changing its Mind on Cannabis - was produced by the nonpartisan Adam Smith Institute and has the backing of several cross-party MPs including former deputy prime minister, Nick Clegg. According to the institute, the UK’s current drug strategy “has failed in its core aims to prevent people from using drugs, manufacturing drugs, and to put a stop to the crime, corruption and death that is taking place on an industrial scale around the world”.

Videos

  • Chamber of Commerce - Christmas Expo 2016, 21min.

  • Sustainable Belize City, 2min.

  • Belize!, 3min. Snorkeling in Shark Alley with Blaire (Texas) and Leo (Sweden)

  • Sarteneja Belize - Fishing Trips - Green Horizon Flats Fishing, 3min. Sarteneja, Belize is a well-kept secret in Belize, and few travelers have heard about its breathtaking sunsets, sport fishing, turquoise swimming waters, and importance as a protected area for manatees and bird-nesting colonies in the Corozal Bay Wildlife Sanctuary. This is slowly changing, as more travelers now stop here on their way to the northern cayes. Green Horizon Flats Fishing is a family owned and operated fishing company in Sarteneja Village in the northern, Belize. Your Fishing Guides, the Verdes Brothers are notorious fishermen. Their family have been fishing all along the Belizean coastline for men generation, just like many other Belizean family who grew up on Belize Sandy Beaches.

  • Shark attack in San Pedro Belize, 4min. Was cruising around the San Pedro Barrier reef when a shark comes out of no where to attack the go pro. Ok it was a Nurse Shark but still was thrilling..

  • Channel 5 Christmas Card 2016, 1.5min.

  • Belize, 6min. A postcard from our Thanksgiving break. No turkey this year. But watch the sharks

  • Belize blue hole., 6min.

  • Loggerhead Turtles mating in the wild, San Pedro, Belize!!!!, 1min.

  • Dancing Turtles - Belize, December 2016, 1/2min.


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