A Guatemalan man has been remanded to the Belize Central Prison until October 25 on charges of illegal entry and illegal panning for gold.
Police say that on Tuesday morning, Luis Bah Caal, 34, a Guatemalan farmer of Monte Los Olivos, Peten, was found in the Ceiba Chico, Mountain Pine Ridge area, in the Cayo District, without entry documents, and with gold in his possession. He was arrested and taken to the San Ignacio Magistrate’s Court yesterday, where he was ordered into remand.
Police said that they were conducting joint operations in the area on Tuesday, September 3, when they came into contact with two Guatemalans, whom they ordered to stop.
One man, however, bolted, but the other was captured. Police said that when the captured man, identified as Luis Bah Caal, was requested to present his documents, he was unable to do so. He was then searched and police found a vial in his pants pocket containing the precious gold.
Police demanded licenses to be presented for the mining of the gold, and again, the man was not able to do so. He was then informed of the offences he committed and was arrested. He was taken to the San Ignacio Police Station, and later taken to court.
Gold is sold at USD $900 an ounce on the world market.