The proprietor of Almacen Ashanti the business establishment in Corozal Town that was raided during a joint operation by the Police Department, Financial Intelligence Unit and the Belize Tax Services on Thursday of last week has been detained by authorities pending charges of operating a Casa de Cambio without a valid permit.

As we told you and showed you last week, during the raid heavily armed officers were seen guarding the entrance of the establishment and no one was allowed to go in or out.

While we questioned the police press office about the raid, no information was offered, that is until today during the weekly press brief. According to Commissioner of Police Chester Williams the operation resulted in the discovery of moneys in various denominations including US, Belizean, Indian and Guatemalan currencies.

chesterChester Williams – Commissioner of Police

“Resulted in the discovery of different denominations of money: there was a sixty thousand US currency, another seventy four thousand US currency, one hundred and eighty one thousand Belize dollars, one point six million pesos, three hundred and fifty Canadian dollars, there was I think one hundred and twenty two thousand rupees which is Indian currency and couple hundred quetzal, from the investigation conducted so far it reveals that the proprietors of the store were engage in the exchange of money “Casa de Cambios” without a permit and so the Income tax confiscated the seventy four thousand US, that was concealed and they failed to declared it, in respect to the other amount of money they will be charge for operating a Casa de Cambio without a permit and then FIU will be dealing with the related offences.”

And in order to hold those who are involved in illegal activities accountable, Commissioner Williams says similar joint operations will continue to be carried out.

Chester Williams – Commissioner of Police

“This is a part of our continuous effort with other agencies which include Customs, Immigration and FIU to go after those persons who we believe that are involved in white collar crime, evading taxes as well as looking at money laundering offences, these operations are going to continue as I said with a view to target those persons a well as those we believe are involve in the illegal landing of plane.”

The confiscated monies remain in police custody pending the outcome of the investigation carried out by the FIU.

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