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Dec 11, 2012

Rosewood still being harvested

A moratorium was imposed on the harvesting of rosewood by Minister of Forestry, Lisel Alamilla, back in April in response to complaints over the unsustainable way that the valuable logs were being cut and sold. But after a major bust on Sunday night, it’s clear that the illegal trade is still very much alive. A joint operation by the Forestry Department, police and B.D.F., intercepted a shipment worth over a hundred thousand dollars being moved out of Toledo. Tonight the news is that the confiscated rosewood has gone missing from where it was being stored at the Forestry Department. Forestry officials have been out of reach, but PGTV’s Wil Maheia provided News Five with information he gathered at the site of the bust.

 

Via Phone: Wil Maheia, Reporter, PGTV

“I get word that there was—that the Forestry had like a sting operation on Sunday night where they intercepted some rosewood that was about to be transported out of the Boom Creek Road, that is right outside of Punta Gorda. The Forestry Department along with police and B.D.F. went to the site and discovered that indeed there was rosewood on the site that was illegally cut. The people that were involved with it, apparently ran away so there were no arrests made but the Forestry Department asked the police to stand by for the rest of the night to secure the rosewood. They stood there and took care of the rosewood until Monday morning when Forestry, along with B.D.F. and police and public works came together on the Boom Creek Road and removed the rosewood.”

 

Wil Maheia

Delahnie Bain

“Do you have an idea of how much rosewood it was?”

 

Via Phone: Wil Maheia

“It was approximately two thousand board feet, a little over two thousand board feet.”

 

Delahnie Bain

“And I understand it’s valued at about a hundred thousand dollars?”

 

Via Phone: Wil Maheia

“Thereabout. You know rosewood is sold on the international market for close to twenty-six US dollars per board feet. So you do the math and you can see how much it is worth.  The fact of the matter is that there’s got to be some kind of corruption somewhere because rosewood, as you know, is not something that is easily moved. It is very hard to move it so definitely it’s not just the small guy on the ground that is involved with this. In fact, they are the least in all of this operation; big people in big places are definitely behind the movement of these illegally cut rosewood.”

 

Maheia is asking residents who witness the illegal logging to report it to the Forestry Department.

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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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2 Responses for “Rosewood still being harvested”

  1. Storm says:

    Our laws should call for mandatory prison sentences based on the quantity of illegal harvesting. I’d say about one year in prison for every 100 board feet would be about right — all the criminal here would serve about 20 years. Does that sound right to you?

    The law should also require automatic confiscation of all equipment used.

    The price of crime has to hurt, otherwise the profit motive will keep fueling the illegal business.

  2. Voice says:

    There we go with corruption again, Sir every single big people in big places are corrupted!!! Our Country is Sadly run by corruption, everything illegaly done in our country is done by d big people in big places, they just have the smaller people to blame for it. We all know this and we can’t do anything about it because its the big people in big places and they are all linked. The head of the police department is corrupted, so is the bdf, so is the cost guard so are all the ministers and P.M so we have no where to go to. we can come to the media but at the end of the day all this well just be pushed under the rug and believe you me, those rose wood will get to whom it was supose to go to, You all will see what i mean, the big people in big places will send for those. We all know this but there is nothing we can do, except getting together as Belizean and kick thier asses out of power but how much of us are willing to today? maybe only a few!!!

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