Friday, March 2, 2018

Belize: How many drug planes were there?

Authorities reported finding two drug planes in northern Belize this week within a day of each other; however, information to the Reporter suggests there may have been as many as four landings.

Sources say that in the early hours to Tuesday morning, three planes landed, but authorities only found one, which was left burning at the landing site. The source added that the authorities are aware of the amount of landings, which prompted the high level of response, including the use of a Belize Defense Force helicopter, dispatched to the area after the discovery.

Orange Walk residents have also said that the landings are a frequent occurrence and represent substantial financial transactions between the people bringing in the planes and counterparts in Belize.

Between Monday and Tuesday, police confirmed two of the landings, for which they found the burning remains of the aircraft. Police said they are conducting joint operations with the Belize Defence Force and are trying to determine the cargo of the burned aircraft, one of which was found in an area between Indian Church and Hill Bank villages in Orange Walk District. The other was found on Tuesday morning in an isolated area near Libertad village in the Corozal district.

Officer Commanding the Corozal Police Formation, Superintendent Sinquest Martinez, said that police are concerned about the incidents because of the resulting issues that drugs can bring to an area.

“It is a concern because it can have a balloon effect on us. It’s drugs that we are dealing with and drugs bring its own violence and cash which can affect us in the northern part of the country,” Martinez said.

He re-emphasized the department’s call for public cooperation in the investigation and encouraged anyone with useful information to call the nearest police station, the police hotline or even himself or his officers. Prior to the back to back landings, the last recorded incident of a suspected drug plane was in November of 2017.

Original article can be found here ➤

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