Coast Guard Headquarters, Tues. Mar. 4, 2021– In a recent interview, the Acting Commandant of the Belize Coast Guard, Commander Gregory Soberanis, spoke about the Coast Guard’s efforts to combat the recent spike in coastal piracy.
Commander Soberanis stated, “the Belize Coast Guard, along with its key partners, have increased its operational tempo in addressing the issue and matter of coastal piracy. We’ve been working very closely with the Fisheries Department, the G13 unit and the Police Department, specifically Officer Commanding Jones in Dangriga and Officer Commanding Ramclam in Placencia. At this, I want to express my sincere gratitude to those key partners who have assisted tremendously in the efforts to address the matter of coastal piracy.”
Since the start of 2021, there have been several robberies of fishermen by pirates in the waters of Southern Belize. In an earlier report, Commander Gregory Soberanis said that more than nine persons were arrested and charged for various port violations. In recent reports, Commander Soberanis mentioned that progress had been made in the joint investigation of the robberies at sea, and that officers had carried out the seizure of stolen assets in Placencia.
“We’ve achieved great success over the past few weeks as well as it relates to the seizure of assets for those we believe were involved in the incident that occurred in Placencia. Our law enforcement partners have also detained one of the key suspects that we believe to be one of the perpetrators in the crime against the individual in the village of Placencia.”, said the Commander.
He went on to say, “Just yesterday, the Joint Operational Task Force were able to identify what we believe to be two stolen vessels in an area that we found to be somewhat of a stash area, that these guys, the criminal element, would store or conceal the vessels that they steal from residents in the southern sector. So we were able to recover two vessels. We currently have them here at Coast Guard headquarters. And we will continue to investigate these matters along with our law enforcement partners.”