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Home Highlights 4 gunmen invade Jalacte home

4 gunmen invade Jalacte home

2 females tied up, BZ$22,000 in quetzal currency stolen; police suspect that BDF soldier involved

BELIZE CITY, Mon. Sept. 24, 2012

Police are investigating allegations that at least one Belize Defence Force (BDF) soldier may have been involved in a home invasion that occurred in the border village of Jalacte, Toledo, on Saturday night, in which four armed, masked men made off with the equivalent of BZ$22,000 in quetzal currency from the home of a local money changer.

Village alcalde, Jeremias Bo, told Amandala today that around 8:00 Saturday night, he received a call reporting that the residence of money changer Tino Augustine Velasquez had been invaded, ransacked and raided of a load of cash.

Bo said that there were two females at home when the incident occurred. The elder woman, who police have identified as Nicholasa Martinez, 57, a naturalized Belizean businesswoman, said that she had opened the door to go to the out-house when four men stormed the residence and tied her and her daughter up. Two of them stood guard over the females while the other two ransacked the house searching for money. They talked in both Spanish and English, the females reported.

According to the village alcalde, the men made off with 175,000 quetzales and some Belizean currency from the home of the money changer. No one was hurt in the incident.

He said that the burglars gained entry to the enclosed property by cutting the wire of the fence.

Jalacte police responded immediately and Punta Gorda police later visited the scene. Officer in charge of the Punta Gorda Police Station, Inspector Ernel Dominguez, told Amandala that police are investigating allegations that a BDF officer may have been involved in the incident.

On their way to respond to the Jalacte incident, PG police confiscated a white Ford Escort with Belize license plates which was seen speeding near Eldridgeville, Toledo. According to Dominguez, two of the persons in the car fled the scene and police have detained the driver for questioning in connection with the Jalacte incident.

An official police report issued on Sunday said that, “On Saturday, September 22, 2012, at 10:00 p.m., police visited Jalacte Village where Nicholasa Martinez, 57, a naturalized Belizean businesswoman, reported that about 8:30 p.m., whilst at home watching television with her daughter, four (4) armed men wearing masks entered and ransacked her house and stole Q170,000 (Quetzal currency) that was inside her bedroom along with two (2) TIGO Huwai brand cellular phones.”

Police say that their investigation continues.

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