Alleged attempted rapist, Steven Castillo, 24, was denied bail when he appeared in the #1 Magistrate?s Court on Tuesday, October 26. He was remanded into custody until Thursday, November 18.
Castillo was charged with attempted rape, aggravated burglary and harm. Police charged him after they caught him butt-naked hiding in a yard on Central American Boulevard on Sunday morning, October 24.
Vicente Reina, 19, a fisherman of #8713 Karl Thompson Street, was remanded to prison today after he was accused of trying to burn down a mechanic?s home on Jane Usher Boulevard.
Reina was formally charged with attempted arson when he appeared in the Belize City Magistrate?s Court #2 before Magistrate Dorothy Flowers, and was offered bail of $2,000. He was unable to meet bail and was remanded to the Hattieville Prison until December 14, 2004.
After a locus en quo tomorrow (a visit to the scene of the crime), the prosecution, represented by Crown Counsel Marjorie Moyston, will close its case in the trial of police constable Sherwood Wade, 32, charged with the murder of Darnell McDonald, Sr., 28.
McDonald, a resident of Belize City, was shot and killed by a single bullet at about 3:00 a.m. on June 14, 2003. The incident occurred in Ladyville, at Mile 10 on the Northern Highway. McDonald, who was driving a white mini van taxi, had just left Celina?s Restaurant and Bar. The prosecution called 12 witnesses. Among them were 4 eyewitnesses. The eyewitnesses included Clive Jones; Patrick Palma; KREM Assistant News Editor and broadcaster, Orson Pickart; and Selwyn McDonald, the deceased?s brother.
Carnival Corporation officials met with Government officials this week to discuss concerns recently aired regarding the contract for the cruise line?s port in Belize City.
Tourism Minister, Hon. Mark Espat, is leading discussions with Carnival on Cabinet?s behalf.
Espat told Amandala that the specific points raised during the meeting with Carnival on Monday were the enforceability of the cruise ship policy, the licensing process, the issue of employment for Belizeans, and the minimum number of passengers that they (Carnival) would commit to bring into Belize.
TI Corruption Perceptions Index 2004 Country Rank
2004 CPI Score 12
4.2 Trinidad and Tobago
In spite of a public pledge from the current political administration that it would aggressively combat corruption, today?s report from a leading international watchdog agency against corruption said Belize is viewed as more corrupt than it was a year ago.
At press time this evening, we were unable to get feedback from the Prime Minister, Hon. Said Musa, on the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) 2004, published by Transparency International (TI), which places Belize 60thamong 146 countries.
Mark Gardiner, 24, construction worker of #102 Jane Usher Boulevard was shot yesterday, Wednesday, sometime between 8:00-8:30 p.m. near his residence.
Gardiner, from his hospital bed, told Amandala that he had returned home after going to a shop, located about two lanes from his house, and was pushing the key into the door when something told him to look around. He said that that was when he noticed two young men on bicycles, and he heard a loud bang.
Confusion and fear reigned for hundreds of primary school students of Queen?s Square Anglican School. It was a most terrifying school day this morning, Thursday. A man, allegedly armed, jumped the school?s fence during their break time, around 10:30 in the morning. Behind him followed three policemen, armed with guns.
The children were only about 5 minutes into their morning break when a vice principal rang the bell, signaling that the children should return to their classes. As the children made their way back to their classrooms, they and students from another school just across the street, Wesley Upper School, heard several shots being fired. The experience has left the children traumatized, a school official said.
Assistant Superintendent Michael Gutierrez was generally considered one of the police force?s more esteemed officers in the eyes of the public, but last week it seems that his promising career came to a screeching halt when he was retired from the force almost eight years early.
Amandala spoke to a well-informed source in the Corozal police unit, who told us the story behind Gutierrez?s discharge.
Carnival?s $100 million project proceeds, says PM Musa
The Government has managed to overcome a major hurdle that had threatened to stall a 100-million-project for Carnival Corporation to build a cruise port on the Southside of Belize City.
But scaling that hurdle?a threatened lawsuit from Carnival?s leading competitor, Royal Caribbean?could cost the Government between US$1 million and US$2 million a year, based on Amandala?s calculations using current passenger arrival figures and future projections from the Belize Tourism Board (BTB).
Two weeks after Government announced its $35 million budget cut, the Prime Minister confirmed that the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is coming to Belize.
In a pre-recorded interview distributed to the media this afternoon, the Prime Minister, Hon. Said Musa, attempted to allay fears that the new wave of belt tightening would lead to an IMF structural adjustment program, or an IMF bail-out, like the one we had entered in December 1984, just before the PUP was voted out of office.