Mark Tench Cries Slander by CEO Saldivar

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Updated: March 2, 2017

In yesterday’s Senate hearing Immigration Officer, Mark Tench appeared before the Senate Special Select Committee. The committee is investigating the findings of the Auditor General report. It was Tench who discovered that the eight visa foils were missing. In his testimony yesterday, Tench told the committee that those visa foils ended in the possession of Eric Chang and Patrick Tillett. An internal investigation was launched which led Tench and other immigrationpersonnel to Corozal to speak with one Inez Cassanova. According to Tench, he insisted that an official report be made to the Belize Police Department but his suggestion was ignored.

MARK TENCH

“I told Mr.Cano to call the police because I told him that we could not carry that investigation any further, that is what I told him. I told him that he  needed to call the police because we had done everything, we could not take it anymore, we could not call in anybody from off the street. The reason why those people met with us was because we could help them with something but now that it would turn into a criminal offence they wouldn’t talk to us anymore. So I told him call the police let us get the police involved so that they can do a thorough investigation and we already knew most of the facts it would have been just to push a little more and we would have gotten that hold thing but we never did.”

ELENA SMITH

“What was Mr.Cano’s response Mr.Tench when you made that suggestion for him to call the police.”

MARK TENCH

“He didn’t say anything.”

ALDO SALAZAR

“Do you know if the police were involved at any point?”

MARK TENCH

“No.”

 

Without any police report there couldn’t be a police investigation. However, Immigration Officer Vernon Leslie and Tench were called before the Public Service Commission because they were being held responsible for the missing visa.

MARK TENCH

“Me and Mr.Leslie were blamed for these visas being missing I am the only person who had done any investigation on this matter and even when we had the hearing last year and we got exonerated from that hearing through the Public Service Commission they still have not done any investigation and the thing about it is that it is unfair the scandal with the department to all the officers who have been dragged here and the real culprits have never even been asked a simple question. Its so unfair and on another matter to have Ms. Saldivar come here and slander my name.”

ALDO SALAZAR

“You were taken before the Public Service Commission for discipline in relation to the missing visas?”

MARK TENCH

“Yes and they used the report that we did to try to say that we are guilty of that.”

ALDO SALAZAR

“That is what I’m referring to. I believe she also mentioned another hearing related to you.”

MARK TENCH

“I didn’t go to any hearing Ms. Saldivar was not even in the department. Ms. Saldivar is saying that I was charged $16,000 that never happened. I have my letter right here saying that I am exonerated from all of those things.”

ALDO SALAZAR

“Which part do you say is defamatory because you were taken before the Public Service Commission.”

MARK TENCH

“I was never charged and Ms. Saldivar didn’t take me anywhere. When did she take me there she was not even working.”

ALDO SALAZAR

“So you dispute that she was the one responsible for having you brought before the commission…”

MARK TENCH

“And she said that I paid because I was responsible. I was never responsible for any of this. She said that right here she said that I was responsible that is why the took me there and I was charged $16,000.”

MARK LIZARRAGA

“I don’t recall her saying the $16,000 but I do recall that you were charged the maximum allowed.”

MARK TENCH

“You have to understand Ms.Saldivar came up with crazy audit thing where they decided that because I had investigated and that the people who bought it were Chinese that each Chinese visa is worth $2,000 and because she said I was responsible that I was going to be surcharged $16,000.”

MARK LIZARRAGA

“Did you at any time pay for these visas?”

MARK TENCH

“No.”