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Nov 29, 2005

Tourists/police officer robbed at gunpoint on Caracol Road

A brazen hold up in the Cayo District on Monday ended with seven people being robbed at gunpoint, one of them a police officer. Tonight we understand that around nine that morning, two vehicles travelling to the ancient Mayan site of Caracol were ambushed by seven men carrying M16s and a short-firearm. In the first van were two Canadian visitors and their Belizean tour guide, while the second vehicle carried another tour guide, a police officer, and two American tourists. The bandits stole cameras, cash, and jewellery. According to San Ignacio police, the thieves threatened to kill the police officer who was wearing his camouflage fatigues, but was unarmed. Reports are that in a last minute decision, the leader of the group, all of whom were unmasked, decided not to shoot the officer and the men disappeared into the bush. No one was physically injured. When they were sure the men had gone, the frightened group continued to Caracol and immediately reported the incident to the authorities. According to a police press release issued on the incident this afternoon, it is strongly suspected that the bandits are Guatemalans. However, we also understand that some of them spoke English during the incident, leaving police to also suspect that Belizeans were part of the raid. If you have any information that may assist the authorities, please contact the nearest police station.

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