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May 26, 2021

Customs Intercept 6,000 Gallons of Contraband Fuel

While drivers are desperately seeking legally imported fuel at the nation’s gas stations, an operation by Customs and Excise officers this morning led to the interception of six thousand gallons of contraband fuel.  Tonight, a Belizean and a Guatemalan driver are detained pending charges for the illegal activity. News Five’s Duane Moody reports.


Duane Moody, Reporting

Two fuel tankers filled with regular gasoline and diesel were intercepted in the Calla Creek area of the Cayo District this morning. The sting operation came on the heels of information acquired by the Customs and Excise Department of a contraband ring in the West.


Gilbert Gordon

Dr. Gilbert Gordon, Deputy Comptroller, Customs & Excise Department

“The customs department embarked on operations. It lasted for about three weeks. We received some information about contraband fuel being moved in the western part of Belize. We turned that information into intelligence and over the weekend, officers were deployed into the western part of Belize to try and intercept the movement of this contraband fuel that is being brought in from the Guatemalan side of the country. Based on the information that we received and the intelligence, the officers intercepted the trucks about six hundred yards from the Guatemalan border while that truck was crossing over into Belize. The trucks were then escorted to Belize City.”


Information to News Five is that some sixty thousand dollars worth of contraband fuel is being brought into Belize per week from Guatemala and sold; that’s an estimated three point one million dollars per year. The fuel tankers carried Belize license plates, which it is believed are switched when crossing and travelling in either of the two countries. The two tankers intercepted today carried six thousand gallons of contraband fuel.


Dr. Gilbert Gordon

“In the two bowsers it’s estimated to be six thousand gallons of fuel; four thousand gallons worth of regular and two thousand gallons worth of diesel.”


Duane Moody

“The trucks belong to a Belizean? A company? Is there an investigation that is ongoing? Talk to us about it.”


Dr. Gilbert Gordon

“Well the investigation is ongoing and so I cannot disclose much detail into the case itself. But based on our preliminary investigation, we have two individuals that have been detained.”


A Belizean and a Guatemalan driver are in detention tonight at the police station in Belize City and it is expected that charges will be file by Thursday for a string of offenses that can possibly include border jumping, and for participating in contraband activities. Duane Moody for News Five.

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