Vivian Trill, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize Human Trafficking

Posted on June 29, 2010


Vivian Trill Report San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.

A Human Rights Mistake. Corruption in Tourism Heaven


Word in from our contacts in San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, Belize.  Looks like its business as usual there for Mayor Elsa Paz.  She co-owns with her brother George a bar called Big Daddy’s Night Club.  This is corruption on steroids.  And Mayor Paz is a symbol of the kind of corruption that continues to let young women get trapped, through human trafficking, into forced prostitution in Belize ficha bars.


Enforce current laws. Current liquor license laws prohibit prostitution in bars.  Penalties are fines not exceeding $50 (Belize) and convictions, possibly recorded on the licensee’s record.  These laws are inadequate and they are rarely enforced.  Big Daddy’s have found the ways to get around these laws to be enforced by the local Police. Hire Police to act as security for your nightclub. Pay the Police Chief money and everyone looks the other way.  Including the local Police Chief.


Recently we reported one instance of human trafficking involving a Big Daddy’s employee who kept a young Mexican woman imprisoned for six months, trading her for prostitution profits and drugs.  Some nights she had forced sex with up to 15 men.  When the woman was able to free herself and report the crime, there was no help because the authorities in this case were the Local Police.  The Mayor also has an understanding with local police, to the point where officers provide security at Big Daddy’s.


In January, the Mayor appointed her brother to the resort island’s five-member liquor board, which is authorized to issue and enforce liquor regulations locally. After her brother board approval a financial deal was made to allow Big Daddy’s terms to pay back license fees. Fees yet to be paid. The liquor board approved over 390 licenses in 2010. Ninety of those licenses were awarded to known ficha bars.However, given its outstandingly large number of ficha bars, San Pedro, Ambergris Caye, should be the example to other offenders. First on the investigation lists should be the following bars: Tinapa, Black & White, Back-A-Town, Riverside, Big Daddy’s, Mings, Las Amigos, Pedro’s, Sport Bar, Jovinies, and Tackle Box.If San Pedro, Ambergris Caye want tourism then stop trafficking in Humans.

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