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Feb 10, 2020

A Workshop to Strengthen Cybercrime Legislation in Belize

Cybercrime relates to offenses committed on the internet or on social media platforms on a number of issues. In the country at this time, are representatives of a Cybercrime Programme of the Council of Europe. The Council is assisting in the drafting of legislation in a matter of days which will be aligned with the Budapest Convention to put an end to online crimes. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Matteo Lucchetti, Cybercrime Programme Manager, Council of Europe

“We have crimes related to illegal access to computer system; we have crimes related to illegal interception of computer data; we have crimes related to computer related forgery or fraud. We have crimes related to online child sexual exploitation. There is also the definition of crimes related to intellectual property violations. This is the common set of definitions that all countries have then each country can also decide to add other articles that are not covered by the Budapest Convention.”


Duane Moody, Reporting

Society has become reliant on technology to carry out business, for education and to gain access to information. But there are those who exploit the system to commit egregious crimes such as the exploitation of children and theft; among other things using the dark net so they cannot be traced. Through the Budapest Convention, drafted in 2001, countries are harmonizing legislation on cybercrime and electronic evidence to stop these online criminals in their tracks. Today, in a first step to have Belize accede to the treaty, a four-day workshop with stakeholders from various agencies is underway at the Biltmore.


Matteo Lucchetti

Matteo Lucchetti

“The Council of Europe is supporting the whole process, is supporting the first point…the first point of entry is the legislation. Once the legislation is in place, the Council of Europe has this programme of capacity building that we have been developing and that I am managing which is called GLACY+, global action on cybercrime. And this is related to building capacity of criminal justice authorities—so law enforcement, police, magistrates, prosecutors, judges on these very topics. And to do this, we have partnered with Interpol who is deploying part of our programme on our behalf. And we try to maximize the delivery of technical courses for law enforcement to deal with dark nets cause this is what criminals are not using to hide themselves in the dark net. Electronic evidence as the main issue. So how to retrieve electronic evidence and how to handle current electronic evidence so that it can be submitted to court and admitted to court and to trials. And this is important also not just for cybercrimes, but also for those physical crimes where electronic evidences is involved.”


George Lovell

While the request was made by Belize back in November 2019, prior to then, the country has been working on a cybercrime legislation. The idea is to have the domestic legislation aligned with the Budapest Convention so that it is included in a network of countries where common rules and values are shared.


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

“Cyber bullying has been one of the ones that the Special Envoy and a number of people were very concerned about and we had see it fit for us to try and get that portion of the legislation to cabinet and to have that pass in a very short timeframe. And if you all would recall, I think it was in the latter part of last year, we had moved forward with those initiatives and cabinet was able to approve a draft legislation that was presented to them. While we were doing that, we realized that there were other things going in the cyber space and we decided that we needed to come with a more comprehensive cybercrime legislation and we had tasked our taskforce to put g some draft proposal to go to cabinet.”


Matteo Lucchetti

“Cybercrime is a cross-national threat by definition so it is very important to have agreement at the international level and not just to draft a legislation that is valid for the national context.”


Sixty-four countries have acceded to the international treaty. Duane Moody for News Five.

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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