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Authorities asked to intervene after head of St Francis Xavier Credit Union committee allegedly “choked,” “shaken” by interim general manager

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Posted: Thursday, May 26, 2022. 6:12 pm CST.

By Aaron Humes: Reports from Corozal Town say police are investigating a formal report made by Mayet Castillo, chair of the Supervisory Committee of the St Francis Xavier Credit Union (SFXCU), and a fellow member, allegedly by the interim (Assistant) General Manager, Michael Riverol, after a confrontation at the credit union’s office on Wednesday.

Castillo said she and Mr. Jorge Cob had settled down to work on Wednesday morning at their office in the credit union when Riverol approached, banging into the door. She narrates what happened next: “He came straight on to me and began holding my neck and trying to choke me, I should say, and I felt very frightened for my life, I can tell you that. I felt like I couldn’t even breathe, and I don’t know if he realized that, and he let me go. And as he let me go he [held] me by my arms and he began shaking me. The same time he was shaking me he said in Spanish, “Ya le nos dije, que no a los quiero aquí!” (I have told you that I don’t want you in here!)

Castillo further alleges that he grabbed her cell phone and “slammed it” on the tiled floor in front of her, then picked up a nearby chair and hit Cob with it. Riverol then pushed Cob as he was trying to defend himself. According to Castillo, he tossed the chair away and then punched Cob twice in the face. Riverol then motioned to his waist as if threatening to pull out a firearm before being restrained by a security guard and another employee. As they left, Riverol offered to refund her the money for the broken cell phone.

Castillo says she was never told by Riverol that the Supervisory Committee members were not allowed into the office and that his office is next door to the church in the old CLICO building down the street, and that from back in February her approval as chair of the Supervisory Committee was confirmed by letter and she had permission to be there. She says they had a conversation just the week before without any issue.

Castillo said she does not doubt that Riverol had a gun and intended to use it: “He had the devil in him.” She added that the events took place in front of a full house of customers and employees, and two of the latter had to be sent home due to their shock.

Castillo says they initially went to the police station right away, but after Cob began feeling ill with high blood pressure, they went to the Corozal Community Hospital and were treated for several hours and issued with a medico-legal form for harm and wounding, then went back to police where they waited several hours to give their statements.

This evening, police simply said they were investigating. There is no indication if they have spoken to Riverol.

But Castillo insists she will press charges and says the incident is an added impetus for the situation at the credit union to be resolved by the Central Bank or preferably, at an annual general meeting. The planned special general meeting that was set for May 29 has been postponed to a date to be announced.

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