Robbers targeted money exchangers at the northern border this morning but did not get to enjoy their loot as quick police response landed the group of bandits in police custody, leaving four of them hospitalized with gun injuries. It was not the best day for their heist as we learned that just before they executed their plan, four specialized units of the Belize Police Department had arrived at the northern border to conduct a an investigation into a complete different matter. Personnel of the Mobile Interdiction Team, Gang Suppression Unit, National Crimes Investigations Branch and Special Patrol Unit were on site and witnessed the brazen robbery and responded immediately. A car chase ensued with police and the bandits exchanging gunfire. Amazingly, not one officer was injured, but four of the robbers got hit. The chase ended successfully with police apprehending the men and recovering the stolen money and firearms. Here is a look at how the heist unfolded at the Santa Elena border in Corozal.
Dalila Ical: “The morning traffic was just picking up at the northern border shortly after 7 o’clock. Money exchanges had gathered at their usual place ready for business as usual. Surveillance footage showed a green SUV parked behind the money exchangers and seconds after five masked men in that clothing jumped out. As the SUV pulls away the robbers ambush at least seven men relieving them of their money bags. Four other civilians in the area were not targeted. About sixteen seconds after the SUV returns and the men jump in but not before firing shots. Five seconds after a Police officer is seen running behind the vehicle gun in hand.”
Sr. Superintendent responsible for dangerous goods: “Our officers that were on the ground immediately opened fire at the vehicle as it was leaving the area and then boarded their Police vehicle and set chase. A pursuit followed where there was an exchange of gunfire between the criminals and the Police. The Police vehicle received impacts however none of our officers were injured. While the criminals were being fired upon the Police also fired upon them. As a result four of the criminals received various degrees of injuries.”
Dalila Ical: “Reports indicate that at least thirty shots were fired. Four of the men are hospitalized and one is in a critical condition. Police say they are all Belizeans and from Corozal Town. They are also known to Police. After the men were apprehended Police combed the area. The officers were able to find a quantity of money and bags with money. They also retrieved a 9mm pistol and a 380 pistol. Also retrieved was .223 rifle with a magazine and ammunition. Police say they believe that they have recovered all the money but up until this morning’s press conference the cash was still being counted. Dalila Ical Love News.”
Police say they are looking into whether anyone else was involved in the heist. They continue to review surveillance cameras in the area. Up until the time of the press conference, police were still investigating who owns the SUV used in the robbery. Police say that they have been increasing police prescence in the areas of concern, Corozal included.///////