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Copper Thieves Strike Sun Coral Plaza… Twice!

Sun Coral Plaza, located on East Sunrise Highway and Coral Road, is the latest target of copper.

Ben Alexander, president of Ivanhoe Limited, the company that owns Sun Coral Plaza, received a phone call at 10 a.m. on Thursday, November 29, alerting him that several shop spaces had been broken into.

“I received a call urging me to come to the plaza as the glass front doors of several shop spaces were broken.

“After receiving the call I immediately made my way to the plaza and directed my attention to the shop spaces that were vandalized.

“Upon closer inspection of the shop spaces, I discovered that thieves had tampered with the meter box removing the copper inside and eventually gained access to the meter room where more copper wiring had been removed,” Alexander said.

A report was made to the Royal Bahamas Police Force (RBPF) and at 4 p.m. on Thursday a team of RBPF officers conducted an investigation.

Alexander thought the initial incident would be the end of his woes however, at 12:30 p.m. on Sunday December 2, copper thieves struck again, this time targeting other shop spaces, removing more copper wiring, making good their escape and resulting in police having to return to the plaza to conduct another round of investigations.

“Yesterday I received phone call informing me that a shop space was broken into at the plaza.

“I, again made my way down there and soon realized copper thieves had vandalized another shop space and removed more copper wiring from the building,” he said.

Frustrated by being a victim of thieves twice in a short space of time and facing more than $10,000 in damages, Alexander is doing all he can to secure the building against any further criminal acts.

“I have gotten a welder to come work on few areas around the building to make it less susceptible to thieves,” Alexander said.

The Freeport News team was informed by Alexander that the plaza, which has 23 shop spaces, five that are occupied, had received extensive damage as a result of 2004 hurricanes Frances and Jeanne.

Alexander noted further that Sun Coral Plaza has been on the real estate market for sale since 1997 following the death of his brother and former president of Ivanhoe Limited Ivan Alexander.

He said: “Since the death of my brother in 1997, the board and I have been trying to sell the plaza but we have been faced with a number of challenges inclusive of the hurricanes of 2004.”

Over the past 15 years, while persons have expressed interest in purchasing the plaza, which Alexander touted as ideally located, a number of issues have thwarted the sale but he anticipates a lucrative deal being brokered some time in the new year and the plaza returning to its days as a successful business hub.

The theft of copper wiring from the Sun Coral Plaza marks more than four such incidents to occur across the island in the past month with the Grand Bahama Port Authority and Bahamas Telecommunications Company receiving thousands of dollars in damages due to the bandits.

By Sharell Lockhart
Freeport News Reporter

Posted in Headlines

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