International — 18 October 2013 — by Adele Ramos

Immigration Minister Godwin Hulse told Amandala tonight, subsequent to a request we made last week for official comments on an online company, IPCBelize, claiming to offer fast-tracked Belize passports in 6 months for US$9,900, that the matter has been turned over by Belize’s Director of Immigration to the international intelligence agency – Interpol.

That is because checks made locally have indicated that IPCBelize is not registered here, either as a local company or an international business corporation. This was confirmed, said Hulse, via the legal counsel within the Ministry of Finance, Gian Ghandi, who led the pertinent checks.

Meanwhile, Hulse told us that his ministry is still pushing to effect changes in his ministry which would minimize the passport and visa irregularities and abuses which have been recently unearthed.

Today, Foreign Affairs Minister Wilfred “Sedi” Elrington confirmed to the media that a former secretary of his was transferred to another Government job after her brother, Carlos Murga, was detained while traveling to Havana, Cuba, with Chinese passports containing Belize visas.

That incident was reported in June, and Elrington was clear in indicating that the former secretary was moved “out of an abundance of caution”—not because any wrongdoing had been proven against her.

Asked about this matter today, Minister Hulse told us that people do go back and forth as couriers between places like London and Taiwan with travel documents, but that does not mean that they are illegal. He said that previously, the documents had been sent using diplomatic pouches.

According to Hulse, there is no Immigration investigation into that matter, as the matter was being handled by Foreign Affairs.

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