Possible Terrorist ties in Belize


(C) ZUBAIR KHAN — RSO SOURCE ALLEGES PAKISTANI-BELIZEAN DRUG TRAFFICKING, MONEY LAUNDERING, POSSIBLE TERRORIST TIES

Date:2008 April 4, 21:28 (Friday)Canonical ID:08BELMOPAN192_a
Original Classification:CONFIDENTIALCurrent Classification:CONFIDENTIAL
Handling Restrictions:– Not Assigned –Character Count:3548
Executive Order:– Not Assigned –Locator:TEXT ONLINE
TAGSASEC – Administration–Security | BH-
Belize | CVIS – Consular
Affairs–Visas | KCRM – Criminal
Activity |PTER – Political Affairs–
Terrorists and Terrorism
Concepts:– Not Assigned –
Enclosure:– Not Assigned –Type:TE
Office Origin:– N/A or Blank –Archive Status:– Not Assigned –
Office Action:– N/A or Blank –
From:Belize BelmopanMarkings:– Not Assigned –
To:Mexico Mexico City | Secretary of State

C O N F I D E N T I A L BELMOPAN 000192

SIPDIS

SIPDIS

FOR DS/IP/WHA, DS/IP/ITA, DS/ITA/WHA, DS/ATA/PE, DS/CR/CIL,
DS/DSS/OSAC, CA/FPP, WHA/CEN, INL HSTC

E.O. 12958: DECL: 04/04/2018
TAGS: ASEC, PTER, CVIS, KCRM, BH
SUBJECT: (C) ZUBAIR KHAN -- RSO SOURCE ALLEGES
PAKISTANI-BELIZEAN DRUG TRAFFICKING, MONEY LAUNDERING,
POSSIBLE TERRORIST TIES

Classified By: Ambassador Robert J. Dieter for reason 1.5(d)

1. (C) SUMMARY:  An RSO source alleges Pakistani-Belizean national, Zubair Khan, is involved with drug trafficking, money laundering, and has possible ties to Lebanese Hezbollah and Pakistan al-Qaeda associations. END SUMMARY.

2. (C) Information provided by source is unconfirmed. RSO source has provided fairly detailed information on Pakistani-Belizean national Zubair Khan.  Khan is a Corozal Free Zone businessman and owns Bellagio Plaza pharmacy. The Corozal Free Zone is located in northern Belize, adjacent to the Mexican border. Source alleges Khan's drug trafficking and money laundering operations may involve Lebanese-Belizeans with possible connections to Hezbollah and Pakistani al-Qaeda associations.

3. (C) Khan allegedly employs people to carry small quantities of drugs packed as medical supplies from his Belize pharmacy through Belize both to Mexico and to the U.S. border. He uses Belizean and Mexican taxi drivers and Autobuses de Oriente (ADO) bus operators to transport drugs, using Chetumal, Mexico bus terminal workers and vendors as couriers. Source states Khan also started a hair salon "Ladies Estatica Salon" in Tijuana, Mexico, to facilitate drug shipments. Khan's unnamed girlfriend operates the business and is responsible for drug distribution in the area. Khan is reported to stay at the Seville Hotel when visiting Tijuana under an assumed name, "Dr. Vegas." Source alleges hotel staff involvement with Khan's drug trafficking.

4. (C) Khan also owns a home in Chetumal, Quintana Roo, Mexico, which he uses as a staging point for drug shipments and money laundering operations. Khan allegedly expanded his drug operations to other northern Mexico areas. Khan's drug trafficking and money laundering supposedly involves several other Belizean nationals and a Lebanese-Belizean.  Source identified the Belizeans as Stephen and Marlon Skeen, Belize City residents. Marlon Skeen allegedly is a customs broker who works closely with the Lebanese-Belizean, identified only as "Ziah" or "Diah." The Lebanese-Belizean's involvement includes money laundering, drug trafficking, and firearms smuggling.

5. (C)  Source asserts that both "Ziah" and Zubair Khan are assisting international terrorist organization Hezbollah, either indirectly or directly. Source's information is unconfirmed and cannot be further substantiated.

6. (C)  COMMENTS:
a. Post believes source identified Pakistani-Belizean Zubair Khan is the same individual as Zubair Ahmed Khan (DPOB 16 June 1963, Pakistan) who possesses a valid U.S. visa issued 24 January 2006 after security advisory opinion clearance received 19 October 2005.
b. Lebanese-Belizeans have long been tied to stolen vehicles being shipped to Lebanon, and suspected ties to Hezbollah. Other sources have provided evidence of human smuggling.  In light of this background, source's allegations are all the more credible.

7. (U)  POC for this cable is RSO Patrick Harms at 011-501-822-4011, ext. 4007, or Vice Consul Ed Soltow at 011-501-822-4011, ext. 4221.

DIETER


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