Belize - Belize News - Channel5Belize.com - Great Belize Productions - Belize Breaking News
Home » Featured, People & Places » Former Deputy Commandant of B.D.F. appealing dismissal
Jun 4, 2012

Former Deputy Commandant of B.D.F. appealing dismissal

Javier Castellanos

Former Deputy Commandant Javier Castellanos, once the second in command of the Belize Defense Force, lost his job as a career officer when he was discharged on December twenty-third, 2011 following the theft of a cache of high-powered weapons from the armory at Price Barracks, Ladyville.  The decision to have Castellanos, as well as three other B.D.F. soldiers, dismissed of active duty was taken by the Security Service Commission after several weeks of investigating a break-in which was reported during a media briefing on October twelfth.  Castellanos, who headed the press conference, was holding over in the absence of Brigadier General Dario Tapia at the time the guns were stolen.  Despite not being linked to the crime he was later placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the inquiry.  Castellanos, nonetheless, was never brought before a tribunal to testify, instead the commission waived trial and he was summarily dismissed under what he describes as being a threat to national security.  Castellanos, who has served for the past twenty-four years, told News Five today that he is appealing the case before the Belize Advisory Council.

 

Col. Javier Castellanos, Former B.D.F. Deputy Commandant

“My attorneys have appealed my case to the [Belize] Advisory Council and are awaiting a response from the Advisory Council as to when they’ll meet and make a determination on this matter.”

 

Isani Cayetano

“What were the circumstances therein that led up to your dismissal from the Belize Defense Force?”

 

Col. Javier Castellanos

“Okay.  On the twelfth of October, 2011 it was discovered that several firearms were stolen or went missing from the B.D.F. Weapons Bulk Store at Price Barracks.  During this period I, Col. Castellanos was holding over as Deputy Commander of the Belize Defense Force and an investigation was immediately launched.  In the month of November, 2011, I, Col. Castellanos, was placed on administrative leave for no purpose or reason at all.  On the twenty-third of December, 2011 I was informed officially that I was discharged from the Belize Defense Force under Section 25 Part 1, Paragraph F on security grounds, effective that date, myself, Warrant Officer Roy Flores and two other junior officers.  On the fourth of January, 2012 my attorney, Mr. Godfrey Smith, filed a notice of appeal on my behalf to the Belize Advisory Council.  I received no further reason or explanation until the second of May, 2012 via my attorney Mr. Smith in a response from the Solicitor General’s Office to the Advisory Council and they are saying that the grounds for my discharge is that the Security Services Commission is in the view that myself and the other three officers acted in gross dereliction of duty.”

 

According to Castellanos, his constitutional rights which include the right to a fair and speedy trial have been infringed.  Castellanos, who is now privately employed, believes that a response from the Belize Advisory Council should be favorable since the merits of his argument are well-defined.

 

Col. Javier Castellanos

“My grounds of appeal are that the [Security] Services Commission discharged me without bringing any specific charges or allegations regarding [this matter] or wrongdoing against me without them advising me of any case against me, affording me a trial or a chance to rebut any allegation against me, giving me a reason for my discharge.  This is a flagrant breach of elementary fairness and my right to natural justice and my discharge was unlawful and it should be null and void.  The Security Service Commission argues that it shall not be disclosed as necessary to disclose the details of my discharge since they believe that it would not be in the public interest to do so, also that it is trite law that on matters of national security and security grounds the fundamental principles of natural justice is overridden.”

 

The three others who were dismissed are technical Quarter Master Sergeant Roy Flores, Force Field Officer Capitan Damian Amaya and Lieutenant Awardo.

Be Sociable, Share!


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.

Advertise Here

17 Responses for “Former Deputy Commandant of B.D.F. appealing dismissal”

  1. Busby says:

    No one in their right mind would have sympathy for this man. If he cannot make proper arrangements to ensure that the BDF armoury is under 24 hour 365 armed guard then he should be a boot shiner instead of a comander.

  2. Islander says:

    He served the military for twenty add years and still does not understand how military tribunals work? He should be dismissed a second time for beIng so stupid.

    Rights granted to citizens do not apply to the military! You don’t believe me? Ask a private to use his right of freedom of speech & buy some popcorn n see what happens.

  3. Benqueno says:

    Yea….absolutely right….when he was a commander….he knows exactly that the Military is governed by their own rules….now all of a sudden this sleeping commander has rights and his was violated…now should we have pity on him now that because of his insecurity we the civilians but we the people and the security interest of the state is at risk because of very well armed criminals out there ….should he get back his job…hell NOOOOOO…it happened once under his watch..what else to expect from him after….NNNOOO WAAYYYYY….get rid of him for GOOODDD

  4. javier castellanos says:

    i am colonel castellanos,this is a democratic country ,not a dictatorship every belizean has a right to a fair trial i am a belizean citizen first and a soldier second, only God can judge us, if u have any problem with that and have the moral courage call me at 633- 0845

  5. Ron Ron Juice says:

    @ Javier Castellanos

    God will judge where your soul will end not your actions, actions, decisions etc will be dealt over here… this is the biggest misconception anyone uses to try and wash their hands for not assuming responsibilities for their actions by saying only God can judge me. We have laws, ordinances and we break anyone of them or fail at any of them we have to be judged and face the necessary corrections, consequences.. etc. etc…,
    2nd: Military laws and Citizen laws are way different, you being a military for so many years should know that and most of the time the same procedures do not apply.
    Whatever anyone did or failed to do yesterday, is responsible today and must face whatever consequences.

  6. GSU commanding officer says:

    Mek they know Colonel, who waan test the bust back sketel…….. nuh mek they pree yo boss man fry yiy to the world lol.

  7. Royal Creole says:

    this country is in a mess because nobody wants to be responsible for their actions.

  8. javier castellanos says:

    For those who have served this beautiful nation those who have made that ultimate sacirifice those who have put this nation before your loved ones like myself for 24 years i welcome ur comments whether its positive or negative ,those who have not committed a sin can cast the stone

  9. Islander says:

    The US, England, etc etc are all democratic countries where military personnel have their own courts that follow their own rules.

    That said , let’s say you get reinstated Mr. Castellanos . Your reinstatement would lower the confidence citizens have on the BDF. Also it would lower the morale of the true hard working dedicated soldiers.

    For some reason your and Gen. Tapia’s lack of physical fitness does not instill confidence . HAVE YOU SEEN THE PICTURES OF ANY FAT AMERICAN, BRITISH, GUATEMALAN Commanding officers?

  10. drose flowers says:

    nobody is judging you Mr Castellanos, but its all your faults, please stop make a fool of yourself, spending your little bit of money on Godfrey, he will get richer and you poorer.
    you know well it was your faults so stop the whip up yourself

  11. ANDRES says:

    @mr. javier
    well, commander -uprising revolutionary speaking..
    its such a dishonor for such discharge you have gotten.. after your 24yrs of service..even if the weapons went missing under your watch, the question is what cause the minitry to waiver its decision to discharge u all four, on ground as threat to national security, , they must have a reviewed and relied on a specified grounds and decision on such matter that addressed to you all being discharge..
    sad to say, DROSE – is correct in saying “godfrey getts richer” becaz
    the question pose after,
    what if?……your grounds, doesnt stand to trial on your redress,
    answer me this..
    if a patrol commander incharge of a platoon , the platoon is on guard of a arsenal, and similar situation occurs.. ,, your be the a member of ministry. . WAT WOULD BE YOUR DECISION.. ..
    you are the second, you make solid decision, you amend the security proceedure, as the commander …..
    well, mr javier..
    good luck on your redress,
    what would you say(advise) to the young commanders on the BDF NOW?

  12. Spade says:

    Colonel Castellanos don’t even waste your time with those comments, they obviously have no clue what they are talking about. If they are military personnel…..eventually it could happen to them. The military grounds are not secured, every military personnel knows that. Colonel Castellanos you fight because you have a right .. as a Belizean you were born with that right and you shall die with that right. Islander and Benqueno the force lacks leadership something you obviously know nothing about. If you are military personnel men you are both kissing @$$#$ and ……….on something else. Colonel Castellanos remember this….your best friend might be your worst enemy and your worst enemy your best friend. Fight ! As for the Service Commission they need to get off their rump and really investigate what is going on in the force getting paid/stipend for actually doing something, making a difference. The problem is obvious….. leadership. A man who does not stand for something will fall for anything. Look how the force lacks discipline and respect a trait that was highly commendable to BDF. All they are known for now are drunkards, thieves and whore mongers and a ton load of kids in every district that they cant provide financial assistance for. Sad! Just push on Colonel Castellanos… the fight is not over….it will be until justice is served and of course a change of leadership in the military.

  13. Belizean Pride says:

    just to show how our laws work and among them are the ones that screw up and end up crying foul when will this end, beging from ministers, police and other public figures, where’s the pride of their status? once they’re on the sit they do crop but when casted out they find some how to blame the system.

  14. Belizean2dbone says:

    I anxiously await the decision of the Advisory Council. This could be a landmark case. All my respect for the BDF has been lost. Just look at the Commander. For heavens sake, how can he look at himself everyday and honestly requests that his officers are physically fit and disciplined when his portrait reflects otherwise. I personally believe that Tapia should have been disciplined also. The big boss should be held accountable. He missed it by his chinny chin hair because he was out of the country but I believe he is just as responsible. The security of that place didnot deteriorate in 1 night or 2 nights. It has been over a period of time. If any of you are friends of BDF soldiers, listen to them talk and you will understand the sad state of what we use to proudly call the Belize Defence Force.

  15. KRISTY says:

    TO ALL U LOOOSERS WHO ARE WRONGLY JUDGING MY UNCLE JAVIER CASTELLANOS I SAY ” HE DONE WIN HE CASE’! HE GET BAK E JOB PLUS ALL E PAY FAN THE TIME THEM PUT HIM PAN ADMIN LEAVE!U GUYS DONT KNOW ANYTHING ABOUT THIS MAN’S LIFE SO SHET THE HELL UP! OK! ALL U PEOPLE THAT SAY U LOVE YOUR COUNTRY ARE FAKE! THIS MAN HAS SACRIFICED 24 YEARS OF HIS LIFE FOR THIS COUNTRY!OK!SO SHET UP!N STOP TALKIN NEGATIVE THINGS ABOUT HIM! HE IS AN INNOCENAT MAN AND THE ADVISORY COUNCIL HAS SEEN THAT!GODFREY SMITH IS AN HONORABLE ATTORNEY! GOD BLESS MY UNCLE JAVIER CASTELLANOS AND TO ALL U PEOPLE THAT TALKED THINGS ABOUT HIM ..JAJAJA..HE GOT HIS JOB BAK!

  16. Celsita Castellanos says:

    This is Celsita Castellanos and Deputy Commandant Javier Castellanos is my brother. First of all I totally agree with what Spade said, if you are not military personnel close your clappers and make sure you have your facts right before you criticize or disrespect an officer. My brother has served his country for 24 plus years and he deserves some respect. He in many occassions has put his country and career first and sacrificed precious time that could have been spent with his family, something which a lot of you critics cannot say. Bottom line is he was unjustly dismissed and now that he has won his appeal my personal opinion is that he deserves a “PUBLIC APOLOGY”

  17. KRISTY says:

    Tio Landy surely deserves a public apology from the entire BDF, starting with the commandant!! He is innocent of whta he has been accused, and therefore deserves to clean his name! Mr. Castellanos is an honest man, and he loves his country before anything else. I say to the entire Belizean Public, respect him, and if you know you have offended this man, apologize before it is too late! God Bless Belize and his honest citizens!

Leave a Reply

CAPTCHA Image
*