With so much tension in the Sugar Industry, speculations ran high this morning after word got out that the house which the Chief Executive Officer of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association rented at San Lorenzo Housing Site went up in flames. No one was in the house at the time of the incident as Oscar Alonso is currently out of the country. Dalila Ical has the details.
Dalila Ical- Reporting
Fire officials received the call about one in the morning today and by the time they responded to the scene of the fire, flames were already seeping through the ceiling of the twenty by twenty-six concrete bungalow.
The blaze was controlled not too long after, but by then much damage had been caused to the house and the belongings of the tenant, Oscar Alonzo, CEO of the Belize Sugar Cane Farmers Association.
The house belongs to Arlene Pelayo, who refrained from making any comments to CTV-3 News. We spoke with Javier Keme of the BSCFA who visited the house later this morning.
Javier Keme- Cane Farmer
“I went to the office to try to print some documents and I met Mr. Fred there and the office was closed, and I met him down there and he was on a call at that moment and then he told me that the house where the CEO rents here in San Lorenzo was set on fire this morning early and so he told me let go and see because there might some documents of the Association and so we might be able to save and maybe the laptop too, I understand that the laptop is still there and some documents also that were not burnt.”
Officials of the BSCFA could not readily get the documents in the morning as police were still conducting their investigation. The intruder gained entry to the building from a small window to the back of the house. The burglar bar was pried out as were several window louvers. The tenant, Oscar Alonzo is not in the country but Pelayo’s father who makes regular checks on the house says that there isn’t much that was missing.
Javier Keme- Cane Farmer
“According to the father of the lady they only took a small TV that the CEO used to have in there but every things else was there and also his bicycle was burnt down in there too.”
Fire officials report that they found evidence that a mattress was pulled to the ground and a small pile of paper placed in the middle and ignited. They say they haven’t found any other ignition source. Investigators add that they are looking at a possible case of arson and burglary.
In the meantime, Keme has informed Alonzo of the incident through email and his family in Belmopan has also been informed.
SP Selvin Tillett - Deputy OC, Orange Walk Police
"Acting upon information received this morning, police visited San Lorenzo housing site are in Orange Walk Town where they saw fire fighters had already extinguish a fire to a concrete bungalow house measuring some 25 by 30 feet. It appears that all items inside were destroyed by water and fire. We know there is Erlene Pelayo rented to one Oscar Alonzo, who is out of the country, so we cannot determine if anything was stolen or whatever. At this moment we are looking at either arson or burglary."
Preliminary investigations indicate that the value of the contents destroyed by the fire is estimated to around two thousand dollars. The value of the damage to the house is unknown, but the property is insured.
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