Screen_Shot_2017-07-11_at_8.08.55_PMTonight there are new details to report on the suspicious case of dozens of BDF uniforms and old outboard engines that should have been disposed of and destroyed, but which were instead found in a private citizen’s home here in Orange Walk Town. As we have been reporting since Friday, an unidentified Mexican national was caught by BDF officials near the Mexican border in possession of a large quantity of BDF uniforms. The foreigner led BDF officials to a house on Baeza’s Alley, which belongs to Sarco Torres. Inside Torres’ house, authorities discovered even more BDF clothing and boat engines. The discovery has pointed to major breaches in national security protocols on various levels. But for the Police, the investigation seems to be winding down because they released Torres and the Mexican national. Tonight, however, that investigation might lead to some serious questioning inside the Force, as CTV-3 News has obtained evidence which shows that Torres, the man in whose house the uniforms were found, had been in close communication with a senior BDF official, just hours before the Mexican national was intercepted and the material confiscated. The evidence is video taken by Police officials of Torres’ flip cellular phone while it was in their custody, and it shows various text messages which a senior BDF official sent to the phone on Thursday June 6th, again, just hours before the border interception occurred. In one of the text messages, the senior BDF official urges Torres to call him back, noting that [quote] “we don’t have any BDF in that area right now” [quote].


It’s a serious message with serious implications in these circumstances, suggesting on the face of it, that Torres has had an informant inside the BDF who has been passing on national security information to him for an unknown period of time.


So far, BDF Commander Brigadier General David Jones has only explained that the Ministry of Finance is responsible for the clothing once it is discarded by them. He has denied any knowledge that any of his senior officers could have been involved, so hopefully he has also obtained the new evidence also.


Financial Secretary Joseph Waight has released a statement explaining that they are trying to find where the breakdown in procedure was. Waight has revealed that Torres had been hired by the Ministry of Finance to dispose of the clothes, but as it has turned out, he didn’t do so.


With everything said, the more salient question is: what is the status of the Police’s investigations? That’s the question put to Commissioner of Police Allen Whylie.


Screen_Shot_2017-07-11_at_8.10.31_PMAllen Whylie - Commissioner of Police


“I know a number of items were indeed found by the police the matter is being investigated, obviously the investigation has not concluded and there is nothing stopping us from at the end of that investigation to charge persons if indeed they have committed some crime or some offence.  In terms of what those individuals were doing with those items, that process of the investigation is still ongoing, in the past I can recall that we use to charge people for been in possession of uniforms but I was told that there was some challenge to a case that we had many years ago and the practice had ceased in terms of charging for those things what we are trying to establish is how those items got there, what those persons were doing with it and who took it there so as I say it’s an active investigation and I wouldn’t want to go into it too much.”


The ComPol was also questioned about the evidence of the text messages which has surfaced. He told the media he hadn’t seen them yet.


Allen Whylie - Commissioner of Police


“We are looking at whether or not any criminal act took place and am certain that the ministry of defense is looking in terms of their internal process and to see if any breaches had occurred, we are looking at whether or not any criminal activity took place, but I cannot speak for the ministry of defense they have to perhaps ask the CEO or perhaps the General.”


Reporter


“Are the police looking at those text messages, all electronic communications which indicates collusion?”


Allen Whylie - Commissioner of Police


“I don’t know if the police had seen them, have heard of them, had access to them because it is the first time am hearing of it but if you share it with Mr. Myvett who is the head of CIB am certain that he will get it to the investigators.”


Reporter


“Sir, specifically the proximity where these items were found, we’ve seen where planes have landed in northern Orange Walk, this is a Mexican national and given that there is a lot of drug activity in Mexico, is it a concern that these items may have been intended for exportation across the border where BDF related uniforms would be use for lawless purposes?”


Allen Whylie - Commissioner of Police


“I think you are asking me to speculate in terms of what the items were doing up there or how they got up there and I cannot speculate in terms of the purpose because I don’t know that is what we are trying to investigate but I would say that I would be very concerned if equipment of a military nature of Belize like uniforms would get in the hands over the border of any perhaps criminal elements.”


We have also learnt that the senior BDF official who the new evidence shows had been messaging Torres, is closely connected to a UDP politician in Belmopan City.


Another important question is: has the Mexican national found his way back to his country and what does this mean to the chances of a proper investigation? With reports swirling in the public of possible dealings with the Mexican cartel, this matter will likely not disappear any time soon. Of note is that while we tried to get in contact with Brigadier General David Jones today all our calls went unanswered.

Share this post

This content has been locked. You can no longer post any comment.