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Oct 23, 2013

Details on the visa hustle involving Chinese nationals; a government minister is in the hot seat

Former Minister of State Elvin Penner has been stealing the spotlight on corruption in the Immigration Department. But tonight there is compelling evidence of deep-rooted corruption in respect of the visa hustle within the U.D.P. administration, and it involves another minister. For some time, we have been following the trail of the massive visa hustle. There have been very credible reports that it has become institutionalized under this administration that there is a quota system and that U.D.P. ministers obtain visas for foreign nationals, bypassing all the procedures. Prime Minister Dean Barrow himself told the press very recently that he has told ministers if they are involved to “For God’s sake stop it,” because it could bring down the government. Now, foreign nationals are willing to pay top dollar for these visas, which are used primarily to offer a route to the U.S. A lucrative hustle and tonight there is compelling evidence. One individual who facilitated visas for Chinese nationals has come forward, and claims that the Minister who got the visas for her from the Immigration Department is Minister of State, Edmund Castro. According to the individual who requested anonymity for the moment, Castro was paid thousands of dollars for every visa he facilitated. News Five brings you part one of the shocking story of greed and corruption, told by the insider who got involved because of contacts in government.

 

Voice of: Visa Facilitator

“A young man who heard me talking to someone about this nationality issue approached me and he told me if I wanted to get into something bigger – that getting a visa pays more and if I would like to try it – so I said okay we can work together – I’ll try it. And he got in touch with me, we sat down and he told me that he is a very close relative or something of Mr. Penner and he used to work with Penner but Mr. Penner was too greedy so maybe I could know another minister who could help me with the process because I know a lot of ministers. And I told him yes. So I got in touch with Minister Edmund Castro and I asked him first about it and he said sure we could work on it.”

 

Reporter

“Was money discussed at that time?”

 

Voice of: Visa Facilitator

“Money was discussed at that time. He said, you know, that has a cost. And we talked about it over the phone…how much was the cost. He said well I’m going to charge you like two thousand for each one, per passport visa. When I got the application forms and everything I would contact Minister Castro that maybe tomorrow or the next day I would be coming to your office and he would say well okay I’ll be there. And when I go to his office, well obviously this wasn’t the first time that something of that nature was being done through Minister Castro’s office because when I took the application and everything there he would then mention to his secretary well I want you to prepare six of those letters, those recommendations off the computer for immigration.”

 

Reporter

“So your contact, the one who came to you in the first place – he would bring what to you?”

 

Voice of: Visa Facilitator

“He would bring the application formed, the Chinese passports and the money, but the money he would bring is only Minister Castro’s money. My money and the government’s money would have to wait until the process is finished. Okay, so when I go to Minister Castro’s office, before he has his secretary do these letters, I have to pay him first. He would say well let me see what you have for me…how much money. One time when I took twelve thousand dollars for six passports he said ah come on, you know you’re making more than this…I think I should be paid three thousand for one but then I told him I can’t do that.”

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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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13 Responses for “Details on the visa hustle involving Chinese nationals; a government minister is in the hot seat”

  1. For God sake stop the Beano, Deano says:

    Booty time, after long corruption day.

    When news that Castro’s visa money has arrived, Castro’s women line up to put out.

    none of those stuck up women working diplomatic missions. it’s the kind of women who dig being treated like dirt by a high ranking UDP menister.

    quasi prostitutes that he can piss on and slap around, because he is an Honorable elected GOB minister. his word is golden. get’s the visa’s done on time.

    A real rasta stud muffin, with his flying squirrel screech and a pen’s to match.

  2. For God sake stop the Beano, Deano says:

    how about some news stories from the embassies?

    clearly the US AMBASADOR and staff, along with NSA tapping the phones, know all about it and how deep each and every minister is into the corruption business, after all 25% of US equipment donations to the Belize police departments ove the last two years have been lost or stolen.

    put them on the spot. don’t be timid.

    what do they think about all these crooked passports and visas?
    this is the kind of travel documents they regularly work with, kind of up their alley.

    they must be overjoyed knowing the documents are fraudulent and the people having them are not who they say they are. The US govt must love this crap, makes their day.

    better question is why the F***ing US EMBASSY HAS SAID NOTHING.
    did they run out of money and no one is working there?
    or are they busy laughing at the Merkel Mess and can’t be bothered?
    or have they given up being an example of moral leadership?
    Do they have reasons to prop up this criminal Belize Government?

  3. Rod says:

    I have been telling all of you for years now what a totally corrupt pm and gov. We have from the pm down they all need to be locked up for being traitors to their country. And if the police won’t do it then we need to do it ourselves lock up the pm commissioner of police and all the ministers involved. What a set of thieves.

  4. Concern says:

    This crowd of hustlers have more money than we can imagine, to buy out all the Lawyers in Belize to fight their cases. It would not be surprising if Boots, and Faber are not involve too. Rumors had it that it was the western guys, but now its probably nearly all the ministers. After they saw Deanno family raking in the millions from court cases and no one wanted to be left out. Yet, NO INVESTIGATION taking place. The police would come if you call them for the least squeak in he neighborhood, but to investigate this grand HUSTLING…their feet and hands are tied.

    We have the most corrupt government in the world being run by a gang of hustlers, who are no different than the drug hustlers in the street.

  5. Al Rich says:

    If this story is true, this is high treason. I am not sure what legal position the British Government still has over the country, but these people should be tried for treason, every last one of them. For a few dollars Belize politicians have exposed the US to easy access of terrorists.

  6. Belizean Pride says:

    WHAT A CONFESSION!!! mein, this is really getting worst every day, the problem is that nobody has ever been so caught red handed like now and that cause a whirlpool of other secret things to start popping in all departments, bet other departments like police, transport and the rest have corruption to the max but haven’t reach there yet but someday surface all of this mess.

  7. SARAH says:

    ENGLAND NEEDS TO END THE COMMON WEALTH WITH BELIZE AND TAKE FULL CONTROL OF THE COUNTRY BECAUSE, IS CRISTAL CLEAR NOW WAY MOST CITIZENS OF BELIZE ARE LIVING IN POVERTY BECAUSE OF THE CORUPTION IN THE P.U.P. AND U.D.P PARTY”S.

  8. Toth says:

    Politicians! We all are apart of the circle of life.
    These policies that you wrote on paper to oppress others, are finite, but the Universal Law
    is not, and everyone of you will have to give account for your actions. You might be stupid drunk
    of the little power you have now, but all is, dust in the wind. Remember, they that created the eyes;
    have eyes; they that created the ears; have ears.

  9. David Req says:

    I don’t believe this story one bit. It is just a desperate attempt by the PUP to get into power.

  10. Mizz Barrow says:

    Run Dean run. Run Castro run. Get out before it is too late. You have the money, now run. It is just a matter of time before you get arrested Castro; and Dean baby, do you remember the Humpty Dumpty story? That’s you man. Dean Barrow = Humpty Dumpty.

  11. Buju says:

    Well since she is in a confessing mood she should hand herself over to the police!

    Just my observation…

  12. ceo says:

    Is there one person in the GOB who is not corrupt or greedy? This is sad but what is worse is the ones making the waves this time around are quilty of the same charges! No wonder Penner told Dean “he feels left out”. For the PM to be able to single handedly tell a minister ‘ok you can sign the passport forms now’ this shows that there are no policies or procedures in place and there is no protocol. How the heck can this be?

  13. disownmicountry says:

    David Req:
    Take your head out of the sand. When was the last time you were properly served in a timely & efficient manner by a government worker in one of the government offices without paying for it? Some years ago,we used to berate the Mexican govt for such practices. Now we are the same or worst. SHAMEFUL!!!
    I don’t understand why Belizeans living in America would support Barrow with his so called “worthy cause”when he shows up for these functions. You couldn’t pay me to attend one.

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