Date: Sat, 30 Mar 1996 07:59:52 -0600
> S * IN ACTIV-L
Stray Pesticides Kill Food Crops Instead of Pot Plants
Cerigua Weekly Briefs, No.13, 24 March 2000
Melchor de Menco, Peten, March 24. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA) can make growing crops near the Belize border dangerous business.
Hugo Rolando Lopez, district attorney for Peten province, reported March 23 that small-scale farmer Carlos Humberto Rosales has filed a complaint against the DEA for approximately $1,700 for destruction of crops and contamination of his farmland.
Lopez says the anti-drug agency has for the past few months regularly flown two helicopters over the region that borders Belize, where Rosales' farm is located, spraying strong pesticides to kill marijuana plants and opium poppies. According to Lopez, one of the helicopters recently sprayed Rosales' tomato, chile and cucumber crops by mistake, killing them and leaving pesticide residue in the soil.
The district attorney has presented the claim to the U.S. embassy, but to date has received no response.