Posted: Thursday, December 8, 2016. 4:36 p.m. CST.
By BBN Staff: Yesterday, officers of the Forest Department conducted a site inspection at a wood work factory in Benque Viejo Town where they discovered over 30,000 board feet of illegally harvested Rosewood in flitch form.
The wood was found to be without official marking and documentation and consequently crow footed by the Forest Department officers.
The owner of the wood workshop in whose possession the illegal wood was discovered was notified of the offence and it is expected that charges will be prepared and levied against him.
The Ministry of Forestry issued a press release today advising the general public that Rosewood is an endangered species monitored under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species and as such, cannot be cut without a valid license and without ensuring that harvest is both legal and sustainable. If these conditions are unmet, rosewood cannot be traded internationally.
The Ministry also reminds the public that according to the Forest Act Chapter 213 of the Laws of Belize, no tree shall be felled for timber without the prior written permission of the Forestry Department. Anyone found cutting a tree without permission or in possession of lumber so gotten is committing an offence and liable to prosecution under the law.
The general public is advised to report any suspicious activity to the Forest Department at the specific telephone number 822-1524 asking for the SFM program manager.
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