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Jul 24, 2015

Charges to be Brought Against Rupert Myles for Desecrating Uxbenka

Rupert Myles

For the past five or six years, the Institute of Archeology has been having discussions with the village of Santa Cruz because the archeological site of Uxbenka encompasses five square kilometers and the village sits within the proposed archeological reserve. One of the many mounds within that vicinity is being unlawfully occupied by Rupert Myles, who took up residence near the entrance of the sacred ground, despite several notices of eviction from the village leadership.  While the matter has somewhat died down in the wake of a string of arrests following Myles’ unlawful detention, legal action is expected to be brought against Myles for desecrating the site.  Myles knowingly effaced part of the mound to build a driveway to his property which sits atop the ruin.  Today, Director of Archaeology Dr. John Morris indicated that charges will be brought against Myles.


Dr. John Morris, Director, Institute of Archeology

“We had demarcated an area that we had proposed for the archeological reserve and informal agreements to the village was that they would not cut the forest there, they would not build any structures within that area; they would not dig or plant anywhere within that proposed reserve—it is about two square kilometers of area which sits right around the village. I must say that in the last couple years, they have been very good. Now you have a gentleman who comes in—I believe he has a common-law-wife in the village—and he decided that he will build a house, to build a wooden structure on top of one of the mounds within the area that we had proposed as the boundary for the archeological reserve. The village wrote us, we made some attempts to get in touch with Mister Myles. He was never there, we were only able to get in touch with his father-in-law and the woman and we expressed that you should not build in these areas here; that you need to move your structures from here. Then he proceeded to bulldoze a road up the side of a platform that was there. And again, I sent out two archeologists to investigate the matter and they were preparing their report which we would have used to serve a notice of eviction to him; then unfortunately, the incident took place.”



“So is it established that he destroyed this monument and that he should not have been there?”


John Morris

Dr. John Morris

“Yes, it is established. Within the laws of Belize, especially the National Institute of Culture and History Act, you cannot build on top of a Maya mound. Sometimes these things happen inadvertently, but when we come out there, you have to move the structure. In fact it had happened on three different occasions in that same village, four five years ago. A gentleman by the name of Gregorio Cal built a house or started to construct a house on top of a mound. We went out there and we asked him to move. We discussed this with the village Alcalde and the chairman and him and he moved his house. The same should have happened in this case especially since the village had agreed to demarcate that particular area as a boundary for the archeological reserve that would then serve as a tourism destination. I don’t know what possessed the gentleman to keep on building and to bulldoze the road. I recently came from a NICH board meeting yesterday and I was given the instruction to proceed with the notice of eviction.”

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2 Responses for “Charges to be Brought Against Rupert Myles for Desecrating Uxbenka”

  1. steven says:

    Thank you for showing both sides of this story. When this story broke…my symphaties lied with Mr. Miles….as the media played it out…he seemed to be the victim…but the true victim is our culture who looses and we stir the pot once more as to our rights as Belizeans…We are quick to form opinions based on one side of the story…I take my symphaties back Mr. Miles…you used what you had in front of you to your full advantage without a care in the world and you never worried who you stepped on….media and all of us included bought your “victim” story…but the truth always shines in the end…now Mr. Miles…Karma is at your door…and she is ready for her payback……

  2. Pueblo Unido says:

    Lets hope that the destruction of the Mayan site up North does not blow over like a breeze and that Denny Grijalva is held fully accountable.!!!

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