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Belize's Most Senior Diplomat Accused of Rape

He's considered Belize's most senior diplomat - but, tonight, Belize's Ambassador to the European Union, Alexis Rosado's future at Foreign Affairs is unclear. That's because the 51 year old stands accused of child abuse - and the allegation is that it was not an isolated event, it was a pattern of behavior.

The complaint comes from a woman who says that at the age of 13, Rosado started having inappropriate sexual relations with her - and this continued for many years.

As we understand it, the report was first made in late 2021, and after months of investigation, the DPP's office today directed that charges be brought.

Cherisse Halsall has been camped out between the Belmopan police station and Magistrate's Court all day, and she has this report:

7News' stakeout of the Belmopan police station ended this afternoon when Ambassador Alexis Rosado emerged from this Black Toyota Hilux. He was handing himself in to be arrested and charged with one charge of rape, one charge of sexual assault and 6 of aggravated assault of an indecent nature.

And as shocking as these allegations are when made against a senior diplomat they are more so in Rosado's case because his accuser is said to have been a 13-year-old minor when the abuse began.

But this afternoon that victim's long road to justice may have finally started when Rosado was arraigned in Belmopan's magistrate court. He was accompanied by His attorney Rene Montero Jr. who this afternoon held brief for Rosado's lead counsel Dickie Bradley.

And DPP Cheryl Lynn Vidal showed up for Ambassador Rosado's arraignment.

And after some time in court Rosado was granted bail.

A bail he was able to meet when his relatives appeared to sign for his release.

But that bail given for a rape charge - there were some eyebrows raised:

Cherisse Halsall:
"Sir, sir could you confirm the charges for us? At least to confirm the charges. What are the charges, sir?"

Rene Montero Jr., Attorney For Rosado
"No comment, no comment."

Cherisse Halsall:
"Is the charge rape? Because for bail to be given on rape would be exceptional."

Rene Montero Jr., Attorney For Rosado
"That is not true. The law allows for bail. Section 16 of the criminal code act allows it."

And with that the Toyota Hilux was allowed to back up right to the courtroom door. We attempted to get an additional comment from Ambassador Rosado but it was too late he jumped in and away they went.

And while that is the criminal matter which will take months if not years to play out, and leaves more than one family totally devastated in its wake - what happens next for this senior diplomat who is considered central to Belize's effort at the ICJ?

Rosado was moved from Guatemala City to Belgium to take over as Ambassador to the European Union shortly after the PUP won. As the Co-Agent for Belize in the territorial dispute before the International Court of Justice his input is considered critical in leading the research which frames the drafting of what is called Belize's counter-memorial, which is the response to the Guatemalan memorial, lodged before the court last year. Belize's counter-memorial is set to be filed on June eighth, 2022.

At the time of Rosado's posting in Belgium, Foreign Minister Eamon Courtenay said, quote,"Ambassador Rosado's posting to Brussels places him close to The Hague, the seat of the Court…The assignment was made after careful strategic consideration." End quote.

Channel 7


Statement by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration

Today, Ambassador Alexis Rosado was charged with serious offences of a sexual nature in the Belmopan Magistrate Court.

At the direction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Foreign Trade and Immigration, Ambassador Rosado has relinquished his diplomatic postings overseas.

The case involving Ambassador Rosado is expected to proceed according to law.


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Marty Offline OP
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Ambassador Rosado's Rise and Demise

It may be the biggest headline of the week: Belize's most senior career diplomat, Ambassador Alexis Rosado faces a charge of rape and other allegations of sex crimes relating to a complaint of child abuse.

It is a charge that took months to materialize - after the complaint was made late last year. And that long gestation speaks to how seriously the DPP's office is treating the allegation and how thoroughly it was investigated before the directive to press charges went out yesterday morning.

The charges are serious, the effect on the families involved surely devastating, and the professional damage to Rosado's career may be irreparable. But how does it damage Belize's sovereign defense of its case against Guatemala's territorial claim at the International Court of Justice? There are no clear answers on that tonight, but Jules Vasquez looked at the public life of Alexis Rosado, senior diplomat:

When Alexis Rosado appeared at the police station yesterday - he did so with his attorney - Rene Montero Jr - who is also his cousin. They were taken there by a driver from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.

Though not pictured on camera, the driver is a notable part of the picture because Rosado - escorted here by a police officer - is still an employee of the Ministry. He remains a career foreign service officer who has occupied the most senior posts in the ministry.

He was made CEO in 2008, a job he held for 6 years. After that, he was assigned to Guatemala in August of 2014 - taking over what is considered to be Belize's most important and sensitive diplomatic posting.

Hon. Dean Barrow (July 30, 2014)
"Is very well qualified, not just in terms of academic qualifications but in terms of the sort of personal traits that are going to be required in particular for this assignment. I am satisfied that Alexis is far and away the best person that we would ask to take over in Guatemala City."

After almost 7 years there - the new government reassigned him to the European Union - where he would lead take over the new Foreign Affairs priority - overseeing the critical national effort to lead the research backing up Belize's case at the International Court of Justice.

At the time, Minister Eamon Courtney told us, quote, "Ambassador Rosado's posting to Brussels places him close to The Hague, the seat of the Court... where our legal team is based and where further research is being undertaken as we draft Belize's counter-memorial." End quote. Indeed, Rosado was long noted as a key researcher:

Alexis Rosado (March 28, 2019)
"Those of us at the Belize High Commission in London. myself, Luis Salazar went over 2-3 years at the archives in the UK going through all the old documentation that pertains to this subject and each time we have felt we have found enough, Sir Eli and his team would tell us you need to go some more - dig deeper."

And that seniority resulted in him being named Co-agent of the Belize Government to, quote, "represent Belize officially at the International Court of Justice (ICJ) and to monitor and coordinate the work ahead that Belize's team of lawyers and other experts will undertake as Belize takes its case to the ICJ."

The new PUP government confirmed that he still held this position in December of 2020.

But, one year later a report emerged and Rosado stood accused of sexual offenses. After a thorough investigation with the involvement of the Director of Public Prosecution - on Thursday April 20th, she gave the directive for a total of 8 counts: One charge of rape, one charge of sexual assault and 6 of aggravated assault of an indecent nature - all very serious offenses - and indictable matters to be heard at the Supreme Court.

A late evening, terse release from the ministry said, quote, "At the direction of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs... Ambassador Rosado has relinquished his diplomatic postings overseas." The wording suggests that he was ordered to relinquish his posts.

Whatever the administrative detail, Belize's most senior diplomat has been brought low within months of Belize having to present its counter-memorial to the ICJ in June - and now we must hope that his confidence in the international system will be vindicated.

Alexis Rosado (April 16, 2018)
"We have relied on the international system for our own security as an independent state, with sovereignty and territorial integrity. We have always depended on the international system to support our cause. We have always maintained that our title to our territory is based on the international legal system that now prevails in the international system."

We note that while Rosado was the co-agent at the ICJ, the lead agent, Ambassador Assad Shoman remains in place as the lead agent, as does Belize's international team, comprising Senior Counsel Sam Wordsworth QC, Dr. Ben Juratowitch QC and Mathias Forteau - among other legal experts and including Hydrographer/Geographer Robin Cleverly.

Channel 7


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Police Did Thorough Investigation Into Rosado

According to the ComPol, a thorough investigation was done before any charge was levied on the former ambassador. He also noted that it's not unusual for victims to not immediately come forward, especially when their rapist is of a high social standing. And he added that, like every rape case, this one will be complex and it will ultimately be up to the courts to decide.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police


"The police had received a complaint from a female who had reported that for a number of years, she had been sexually assault by the former ambassador and I think on one or two occasions, she was raped. We conducted a thorough investigation into the matter and the file was submitted by the DPP office for advice and it was last week Wednesday that we received directives from the DPP directing that Mr Rosado be charged with several counts of aggravated assault and I think one count of rape. He has since been arraigned at the Belmopan Magistrate court in respect to those matters and the matter is now before the court for determination."

"It is not strange for that to occur, it had happened on numerous occasions before and it's for the court to determine if they will believe the virtual complainant but we have to appreciate the fact that when these things occur, the victim, women for the most part, may be reluctant to come forward, particularly due to social statute of a person and there may also be other factors that deter a person from coming forward to make a complaint immediately so it's not unusual for a victim to come forth that late after having been done something by someone."

"Rape is a complex issue, a complex investigation, as it says, allegations are easy to be made, difficult to prove and more difficult to disprove. For the most part it is her word against his and even though yes we know that the law has changed where in the past, it required that there must be some level of collaboration, that is no more the case, they need not be any collaboration and remember rape is the slightest degree of penetration of the male sexual organ into the female sexual organ so like I said before it is her word against the accuser word and the court will determine that."


Channel 7

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Details on Charges against Former Ambassador Alexis Rosado

Disgraced senior diplomat Alexis Rosado is once again in the news tonight as more details around the charges of rape and aggravated assault are now being made public. Last Wednesday, the former Ambassador to Belgium was paraded into the Belmopan Magistrate's Court, charged for two counts of rape and seven counts of aggravated assault, following a report from a woman who alleges that from early as thirteen, she had been assaulted multiple times and raped twice by Rosado. After recording statements, the Belize Police Department, on the advice of the Director of Public Prosecution, leveled the charges against Rosado. Today, Commissioner of Police Chester Williams said that rape is a complex issue - it is difficult to prove and more difficult to disprove, but that determination is up to the court.

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

"The police had received a complaint from a female who had reported that for a number of years she had been sexually assaulted by the former ambassador and I think on one or two occasions she was raped. We conducted a thorough investigation into the matter and the file was submitted to the Director of Public Prosecutions for advice and it was last week Wednesday that we received directives from the D.P.P., directing that Mister Rosado be charged for several counts of aggravated assault and I think one count of rape. He has since been arraigned at the Belmopan Magistrate's Court in respect to those matters and the matter is now before the court for determination. It is not strange for that to occur. It had happened on numerous occasions before and it is a matter for the court to determine whether or not they will believe the virtual complainant. But you have to appreciate the fact that when these things occur, the victim, women for the most part may be reluctant to come forward particularly due to the social statute of a persons. There may also be other facts that may deter a person from coming forward to make a complaint immediately. So it is not unusual for a victim to come forth that late, after having been done something by someone."

Duane Moody

"And the law provides for that�"

Chester Williams

"Yes, the law does make provisions for that."

Reporter

"But Commissioner, the child was thirteen at the time. What role did the parents play? I mean, I must�my daughter tell me something as a parent, why wait so long as well to do something?"

Chester Williams

"Perhaps she didn't report the matter to her parents. So it is something, like I said before, the court will look into in determining whether or not they are going to believe her or going to believe Mister Rosado."

Reporter

"In terms of the investigation, it wouldn't just be the complainant's word, I imagine. There would have to be some sort of physical evidence if possible and other evidence to back up what she's saying?"

Chester Williams

"Not necessarily. Rape is a complex issue, a complex investigation. As it's said, allegations are easy to be made, difficult to prove and more difficult to disprove. For the most part, it is her word against his and even though yes, we know that the law has changed where in the past it required that there must be some level of collaboration; that is no more the case. There need not be any collaboration."

Channel 5



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