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Another MS-13 Gang Member Arrested in Belize

Police Commissioner Chester Williams confirmed to Love News that another member of the Mara Salvatrucha, commonly known as MS-13, was arrested in Belize. Williams told Love News that the MS-13 gang member was arrested on Friday. The government of El Salvador has arrested more than 24,000 people in three weeks after it declared a “state of emergency” in response to a spike in gang violence that grants the state sweeping powers and suspends some civil liberties. Some of these gang members are fleeing to other Central American countries. The Belize Police Department is on high alert, and according to the Commissioner, police presence at the border has intensified, especially in the west. 

Hipolito Novelo, Love FM News : In El Salvador, Bukele’s Government is cracking down on gangs. More than 26,000 gang bangers have been sent to jail under a state of emergency. Some of Mara Salvatrucha or MS 13 gang members have fled their country, running to places like Belize. 

Chester Williams, Commissioner of Police

Chester Williams, Commissioner, Belize Police Department: “Yesterday we intercepted another one of those persons we believe is from the Salvador area and is fleeing what is taking place in Salvador.”

Reporter: This is in addition to the three MS 13 gang members detained last week in San Ignacio Town, Cayo District. Police Commissioner says the Police Department remains on high alert. 

Chester Williams, Commissioner, Belize Police Department: “We have intensified our border presence with police officers from MIT, ensuring that the particular border areas particularly in the west is covered by police officers and we have our police officers in that area with police, Immigration, Customs and so they are on high alert to make sure that if any of those persons were to come, we can intercept them. 

Hipolito Novelo, Love FM News : Some of these gang members have taken up homes in areas such as Crooman Lagoon in Belize City and Slavapan and Maya Mopan in Belmopan. Several of these undocumented gangsters have been arrested charged and arraigned and shipped to the Belize Central Pison where they await deportation. Given the porous nature of Belize’s border, Home Affairs Minister Kareem Musa says the police department will need to work with other agencies and communities to capture these criminals. 

Hon.Kareem Musa, Minister of Home Affairs

Hon. Kareem  Musa, Minister of Home Affairs: “We have very porous borders but it is incumbent on our police department to work along with various communities in getting information and intelligence on the whereabouts of any such individuals. We had reports about a week ago in the Belmopan area that we had visited. We didn’t find anyone there but I’m told there was a visit in San Ignacio and three individuals confirmed here and so we’re acting very quickly, very decisively because that’s a very huge concern if we have those elements coming into our country.”