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Apr 23, 2014

B.D.F. Commander welcomes enquiry led by U.S. Investigator

David Jones

On Tuesday, Foreign Affairs Minister, Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington told News Five that American Investigator and Director of the International Forensics Science Laboratory and Training Center in the United States, Dr. James Hamdi, was in Belize. His mission is to conduct an intensive and comprehensive investigation into the shooting death of Guatemalan national Tomas Ramirez back on March twenty-ninth. It has been confirmed that the incident occurred well within Belizean territory where Ramirez and other men were encroaching inside the Chiquibul. The decision to bring in the expert was agreed to by both countries in an effort to promote confidence building. Today, the media questioned B.D.F. Commander, Brigadier General David Jones, about what in some quarters is perceived as an insult to Belizean law-enforcement officers. According to Jones, while the police have done an investigation, he welcomes an independent enquiry because he is confident that his soldiers acted in self-defence.

 

Brigadier General David Jones, Commander, Belize Defense Force

“Immediately after the incident that occurred where there was a fatal shooting just a few weeks ago, the Prensa Libre posted that the incident occurred in Guatemala and the guys were farming inside Guatemala and our soldiers went in there, shot and killed him. It has been verified already, the investigation is still ongoing, however, it has been verified that that incident did occur about three kilometers in Belize. That’s for Prensa Libre. They’ve stating that it is the FBI; that is not true. Both governments have agreed to an independent investigator and there was an American gentleman as expressed by the Foreign Minister last night on the newscast. Both governments agreed to bring him in to have some sort of transparency; to let the Guatemalans see that we are not trying to hide anything and we want them to have an independent investigator to inform them of what actually transpired.”

 

Reporter

“Why is it that it is so special that in the situation where a Guatemalan was shot that outside influence must be brought in to give a perception of transparency?”

 

Brigadier General David Jones

“Our police have already done its investigation; that may not have gone to the public already but there was a police officer on that patrol. When they came in, the police in Cayo went to Camp Belizario and interviewed every single soldier that was on that patrol including the members from FCD and they did their own investigation and they have their own conclusions as well. That may not have gone to the public, but we are aware of their investigation; it is done already. However, it is an incident that’s between two countries—between Belize and Guatemala. We do have tensions; we are trying to resolve the problems we have between the two countries and so it is very prudent that our government has agreed to show good faith that we are not here to hide anything. I have trust and faith in my soldiers that they acted in self-defense; that’s my stance and I have no fear of any independent investigator coming in Belize with that incident because I trust in what they soldiers did and I stand by them.”

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2 Responses for “B.D.F. Commander welcomes enquiry led by U.S. Investigator”

  1. CEO says:

    Mr. Reporter you that asked the question and all those that are opposing an independent review apparently does not understand world affairs.

    An independent review adds legitimacy to any problem.

  2. Fair Justice says:

    My opinion, its no insult to the police, its to show them how to do forensicd and how to go about using the evidence available to convict a person. I believe that our police officers shoukd go abroad to do forensic training, too many murders go unsolved in Belize because of lack of resources and lack of knowledge.

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