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May 21, 2015

Leaseholder Faces Eviction by Edmund Castro’s Wife

Minister of State Edmund Castro has been having a warm time of it lately. He finished off last week in court, where the judge and the public had to listen to hours of very compelling and unpleasant testimony – first about distinctly low points in his political career, and then about his alleged involvement in the illegal facilitation of visas. Then on Wednesday he was bombarded with allegations of using private land in Santa Marta to grow cane for his personal gain. And today, there is more fuel to add to the fire simmering under the seat of the embattled Area Representative. Tricia Young, the holder of a valid lease in Fresh Pond, Castro’s constituency, has been given an eviction notice and ordered to vacate her home. That eviction notice was served on her by persons acting on behalf of Helen Castro, the wife of Minister Edmund Castro. Mike Rudon has been following the situation and has the story. 

 

Mike Rudon, Reporting

Tricia Young first came to the small community of Fresh Pond in 2013. She is a voter in Queen Square, so was given this abandoned home by the sister of the Prime Minister. It doesn’t look like much, but it signalled a new start for a single mother of four young children.

 

Voice of: Tricia Young, Being Evicted from Home

“I came to Fresh Pond to get over my loss. I had recently lost my mom and my kids’ father. So I just wanted to get away and start a new life with my kids. Sister B gave me this house in Fresh Pond, #291 Fresh Pond. A week before I started to renovate my home in Fresh Pond the news came out that Gaspar Vega was seizing homes in Fresh Pond, and my home was the first one he seized. Sister B called me and told me about the news, and said there were no more homes available for government. After a month’s time she called me back and said there is another home available for government, which is #28 Fresh Pond.”

 

And that brings us to today’s story which surrounds this large corner lot in Fresh Pond, #28. It had been abandoned for years, covered by head-high bush, but slowly was transformed by the young woman and her kids trying to start over.

 

Voice of: Tricia Young

“When we started to work on this #28 Fresh Pond, sometimes like on weekends me and my four kids were here until eleven o’clock at night, twelve at night trying to clean up and get the place ready so we could move in and start a life. I did a lot, because the house itself was in a state. When we went in the house there was a big papaya tree growing in the middle of my hall. I had to cut it down and we had to cover the floor where it burst the floor and clean it out, because there was a lot of grass and different trees growing in the house. We did a lot of work. There were no windows, no doors, no toilet, no electricity, anything.”

 

The first sign that something wasn’t quite right was in December 2013, when Young says she got a visit from her Area Representative, the Hon. Edmund Castro.

 

Voice of: Tricia Young

“Mr. Castro docked up at my door a Saturday morning. He said good day and I bid him back the time of the day. He asked me who gave me permission to move to #28 Fresh Pond, so I told him I’m from the Queen Square Division and I got #28 Fresh Pond from through the Prime Minister. He told me no, that they could not give me #28 Fresh Pond because apparently it has an owner. I don’t know how it can have an owner when I have my papers in my name.”

 

And Young has those documents – a lease certificate issued in September 2013, and a Land Purchase Approval Form issued one month after, in October 2013. She also has a receipt for payment she has made towards purchasing that parcel of land.

 

Voice of: Tricia Young

“I have my lease title in my name, and I’m purchasing it. I have my receipt, everything. All my documents!”

 

Reporter

“Now those documents are in your name? This piece of land is in your name?”

 

Voice of: Tricia Young

“In my name! Everything is in my name.”

 

Reporter

“When was the last time you went to the Lands Department to get any form of documentation pertaining to this land?”

 

Voice of: Tricia Young

“I went to Lands two weeks ago to start purchasing my land. And when I started purchasing my land, the receipt came out in my name, not Castro’s name.”

 

And that’s why Young was so surprised by a visit she got in April 2015 with some bad news…this time an eviction notice on behalf of Helen Castro, with that notice claiming that Castro is the beneficial owner of that parcel and Young has until May first to, quote – quit and deliver the premises,” end quote.

 

Voice of: Tricia Young

“The day they came to my home, it was a Monday. I was at the shop when I got a phone call. Mr. Palas called me. He said Tricia…are you at home? And I said no, but I’m five minutes from home. He asked me if I could reach home and I said sure. I reached at my house and when I reached I met Sister B vehicle parked outside of my home. Her driver came out, and Mr. Palas. She didn’t come out the vehicle. I didn’t even know she was in the vehicle until the vehicle was about to leave and I heard her mouth. She didn’t even have the decency to come out and say anything because she gave me #28 Fresh Pond. That night…I siddown up, and I cried yes, I did, but most of all I did a lot of praying because I believe that only God has the answer and only he can do whatever he has to do.”

 

Young has decided to fight, since the land is in her name at the Lands Department, and she can’t understand how the wife of Edmund Castro, Helen Castro, could possibly be the beneficial owner of a property registered in her name. Mike Rudon reporting for News Five.

 

News Five tried to reach Commissioner of Lands Wilbert Vallejos for comment, but he did not answer our calls. Young has sought legal advice in the matter.

 

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Viewers please note: This Internet newscast is a verbatim transcript of our evening television newscast. Where speakers use Kriol, we attempt to faithfully reproduce the quotes using a standard spelling system.

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4 Responses for “Leaseholder Faces Eviction by Edmund Castro’s Wife”

  1. Ali BaBarrow says:

    Ali and the forty thieves own all the land in Belize.

    The thieves own the government, they create new titles as needed to confiscate land.

    This is Barrow’s Belize, soon to be called the Republic of Barroduras, owned officially by Ali and the forty. Get used to being screwed and downtrodden. God is also against you, He is pro-UDP!

    You must move, Ali gave the land to Bootyman Castro. Thank you for all the hard work you did to improve the property, Helen is thankful.

  2. Belizesoul says:

    I hope a good lawyer steps up to help this woman, for free!

  3. Average Jane says:

    “Thief the land” at it again – poor people he di harass…

  4. CEO says:

    Dam crook!

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