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Aug 30, 2012

Million dollar cocaine drop, but devil in untold details

As the US Southern Command visited the Coastguard Headquarters on Wednesday, a bail of cocaine weighing over a hundred pounds was retrieved from the Turneffe Atoll. It was a major find that is valued at one point eight million dollars. The find coincided with the transfer of sophisticated equipment to the Belize Coast Guard and B.D.F. in the fight against transnational crime. News Five’s Jose Sanchez reports.

 

Jose Sanchez, Reporting

On Wednesday, tourists spotted a bale of cocaine while on a fishing trip.  After the guides reeled in the load, it was placed in a secure location. The tourists then informed the authorities and the Belize Coastguard quickly responded and took the bale to the headquarters which was preparing for today’s visit of General Douglas Fraser. The Commander of the U.S. Southern Command brought more vessels specifically to combat drug trafficking such as the ones that yielded thirty-five bricks valued at one point eight million dollars.

 

Douglas Fraser

General Douglas Fraser, Commander of U.S. Southern Command

“As the United States Southern Command and the United States International Organizations have conducted operation that focused in the maritime environments of the Caribbean and the Pacific, we have reduced the flow of drug trafficking in both those maritime environments. As we have worked together over the last six months, we have seen an increase in the amount of drug traffic impacted by over fifty percent; we have seen a reduction in the amount of maritime traffic coming into Central America as well as the amount of air traffic. And that is directly because we all work together and we coordinate together and it is in working together that we can achieve those types of results.”

 

But are we equipped for the onslaught of drug runners, and the violence that they bring to Belize?

 

Jose Sanchez

“A lot of drug transactions occur either by planes landing in the northern villages of the country or in areas such as the Turneffe Atoll. Is there a strategic plan to deal with wet drops or with these planes landing in the north?”

 

Lt. Col. George Lovell (Ret’d), C.E.O., Ministry of National Security

George Lovell

“Yes, it is all a part of the restructuring of the Coast Guard and their strategic plan and I wouldn’t want to talk to it because I would just give out a whole lot of information that would cause our planning processes to be in vain. So I don’t want to get into any details, but yes that’s a part of our plan to look at it.”

 

Jose Sanchez

“Would there be more boats on the sea right now. Last week there was a bus with drugs in Orange Walk at the Toll Bridge with the package saying PZ and the same thing again yesterday in the Turneffe Atoll. These are small parcels, but clearly everyone assumes there would be more.”

 

Lt. Col. George Lovell (Ret’d)

“We will have to look at how we deploy our assets in a more effective manner because our resources are limited. We have to, as much as practicable, live within our resources. So our challenge exists now that we now need to go back to the drawing board, revisit our plans that we have and see how best we can maximize our efforts with the resources we currently have at our disposal.”

 

Jose Sanchez

“But currently, would there be more patrols since there are clearly people who will be out there right now hoping to find more?”

 

Lt. Col. George Lovell (Ret’d)

“More patrols does not necessarily means you will be more effective. We need to looka t the current way we are operating and see how best we can maximize our efforts. I wouldn’t want to say, making a commitment to you, to say yes we are going to increase the patrols because that may not necessarily be the answer.”

 

General Douglas Fraser

“From the United States Southern Command standpoint, I look forward to continuing those operations and that cooperation.”

 

The war on drugs affects every country on the shipment route and continued support is necessary to reduce the planes and wet drops of cocaine.  Reporting for News Five, Jose Sanchez.

 

There are three press officers with the Ministry of National Security. Press Officer number one did not respond to calls, voice mails or text messages. Press officer number two who was present at today’s ceremony referred us to press officer number one.  And press officer number three has hardly been seen since his appointment. Late this evening Press Officer number one issued a release saying that, “The bale was found to contain thirty five parcels; of that twenty one were wrapped in red tape with the markings “PZ” on them, ten were wrapped in brown tape without any markings and four were wrapped in yellow tape without any markings. Each parcel was weighed individually and to a total weight of forty-seven thousand, four hundred and eighty point five grams or one hundred and four pounds.”

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6 Responses for “Million dollar cocaine drop, but devil in untold details”

  1. Rod says:

    Wonder how many drugs has made it into the country watch the bank accounts of all ministers , judges and known drug dealers.

  2. Uncle Benji says:

    Gawd, we are so naive. Remember when the Reagan govt flooded Central America with drugs? It resulted in civil war among the poor, down trodden peasants in places like El Salvador and Nicaragua. Then there was the George Bush gov’t flooding Los Angeles, CA with drugs. It resulted in Los Angeles being burnt.

    Mexican cartels everyday are getting closer to American cities. Let’s flood Belize with drugs, have the Mexican cartels take an interest in Belize, and move their operations into Belize, farther away from US border cities.

    Drugs found floating in Belizeans seas belong to the US government. Wanna bet?

  3. pie pie says:

    Rod you are soo ignorant all you do is blame the government makes me wonder how much education you have or are you soo stupid or blind by political motivation you won’t get votes like that it’s sad to see people like you blame the government why not try working together Belize is
    For all of us soo be careful what you say

  4. Swamp Dragon says:

    You are a damn fool Uncle Benji! Nothing you said here is true. Big Dog is the US govt. without them we would be Giatemala. Pull yo head from yo behind man..

  5. granduncle benjaminz says:

    With ROd, Unkle Benji and Storm, i guess no one else s opinion counts. wht’rs the use… we should follow their lead adn just roll over and die. What is their point? we have no hope so just give up?

  6. Be You says:

    If the US wasn’t the biggest consumer of illegal drugs then we would not be dealing with these issues. Now, for those who are out there on our reef in search of wet drops, try thinking of the damage you are doing to the natural environment instead of trying to get rich easy and actually think of a better and safer future for your kids.

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