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Feb 23, 2017

The David Nanes Caper Revealed in Paperwork from Immigration

David Nanes Schnitzer

David Miguel Banes, otherwise known as David Nanes Schnitzer, sits in a Mexican jail for white collar crimes he allegedly committed in that jurisdiction.  After defrauding investors of millions of dollars and subsequently absconding to Belize, specifically San Pedro, to avoid prosecution, Banes was facilitated with a falsified Belize Nationality Certificate, as well as a passport. Tonight, we have documents that detail how Nanes was able to receive a number of Belize documents and in this case, his Belizean nationality in less than three weeks.  According to the leaked files, in November 2015, concerns were raised with Acting Director of Immigration Maria Marin pertaining to the validity of those documents.  An investigation into several discrepancies later revealed that David B. Banes and David M. Nanes were one and the same and that the individual was being sought by police and Interpol.  That information was relayed to Minister of Immigration Godwin Hulse who met with Chief Executive Officer Edmund Zuniga to discuss the matter.  The documents later discovered that the application was accepted by Immigration Clerk Ady Pacheco, who is yet to appear before the Senate Special Select Committee.  Interestingly, Pacheco did not routinely accept applications at her desk in the Nationality Section and a review of the Nationality Receipt book indicated Nanes/Banes was the only application that she accepted between October 2012 and March 2013.  The sheaf of documents leaked to the media show that there were also several discrepancies with Nanes’ qualifying criteria, particularly his permanent residence stamp.  The process for Nanes to become a Belizean was accomplished within nineteen days.  A report by former Acting Director Marin stops short of commenting on a recommendation provided by former Director Ruth Meighan. There is also reference to a letter of support written by Minister Edmund Castro, but the recommendation for Nanes’ nationality application came from the brother of the Minister of Tourism, Manuel Heredia Junior.

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