The U.S. Congress has passed to pass a rescue bill for Puerto Rico.
The Caribbean island is a U.S. territory submerged under $72 billion of debt it can’t pay.
As CCTV America’s Jessica Stone reports, high unemployment has led to spike in crime and among the victims Chinese businesses.
Chinese businesses in Puerto Rico affected by spike in crimeThe U.S. Congress has passed to pass a rescue bill for Puerto Rico. As CCTV America’s Jessica Stone reports, high unemployment has led to spike in crime and among the victims Chinese businesses.
For 20 years, Rica China in Bayamon has fed the neighborhood and beyond.
It’s the oldest Chinese restaurant in this Puerto Rican community.
The owner Huan Chang arrived in Puerto Rico 30 years ago from Guangzhou Province, and quickly fell in love with his new home.
“In the beginning it was like a paradise here, but in the last couple of years, things have gotten bad because of the economy,” he said.
That’s also when, Huan said, robbers broke into the apartment above the restaurant.
“They pointed guns at the cooks asked for money, but because they’re not owners, they have little money, and then the criminals started to break things, and eventually left,” he also said.
After tax breaks expired in 2006, manufacturers abandoned the island. Jobs went with them. Nearly half of the population here lives in poverty.
Huan believes he and other Chinese restaurant owners are easy targets. It’s no secret they run cash businesses, and often stash their money at home.
Huan said his brother also owns a restaurant. One night after work in April, he came home to a broken back door and missing cash and valuables.
No one broke into Qui Shun Zhen’s restaurant at the mall. Armed robbers burst into her home. They demanded five thousand dollars cash and threatened to kill her young daughter.
Huan is taking precautions. Eight security cameras around the restaurant and a guard posted outside the front door. At $2,200 a month, he said, it’s the new cost of doing business in Puerto Rico.
Huan said the Chinese community will meet in July with the Puerto Rican territorial police department to discuss their concerns. Chinese community leaders tell us, the number of muggings and break-ins has fallen in 2016 from past years.