Navas lays off prosecutors who
did not appeal the release of Casas Vita's manager
By AM Costa Rica staff
The prosecutor general, Emilia Navas, removed prosecutor Jorge Araya from the investigation that is supposed to be carried out against the real estate company Casas Vita and against its owner.
The decision was taken by the Navas when Araya did not appeal the decision of a judge who left a suspect free without any kind of precautionary measure, despite the fact that the Prosecutor's Office had requested preventive custody for the detainee, a judicial spokesperson said.
The company Casas Vita and its representative have been sued in civil and criminal courts involving a large number of people in the sale of houses and land. According to information from the Public Prosecutor's Office, the company received large sums of money from clients as down payments for the purchase of homes, but the properties were never delivered to the buyers. In addition, the Prosecutor's Office also said that Casas Vita Company put properties on sale that belonged to other owners or mortgagees.
Last week, the Office of the Prosecutor raided the company's headquarters, as well as houses and a law firm. At the hearing that same day, it requested preventive detention for the manager, but according to Mario Valverde, attorney representing the victims, the prosecutor Araya, who had to obtain the precautionary measure, did not provide proper justification correctly, so the judge had to reject it. In addition Araya did not appeal the decision of the court, which is why the manager is was free without any type of precautionary measure.
Preventive custody is the toughest measure of the court while a case is under investigation and is requested only in particular cases when there is a possibility that the accused will escape, when there is a danger that the accused may interfere in the investigation or when the accused may attempt influence parties and witnesses.
Araya, the prosecutor, had already been sanctioned 2011 when, as judge of a Heredia court, he had released an American man investigated for aggravated robbery. The man fled to his country.
At the 2011 hearing, Araya withdrew the injunction that had been imposed against the American, saying there was not enough evidence to link him to an aggravated robbery.
A.M. Costa Rica wire services photo
The housing project managers are under investigation
for alleged fraud.
At the time, the auxiliary prosecutor of Heredia, Johel Garita, filed the complaint before the Supreme Court saying that Araya, as a judge, had made a serious error in the administration of justice by releasing the man.
Days after the American was released, he returned to his country.
In 2011, the full court agreed to sanction Araya with a two-month suspension without salary. It was attributed "serious and unjustified error in the administration of justice, which affects good public service and negatively the image of the Judiciary."
Sometime later, Araya was appointed as a deputy prosecutor.
The case against Casas Vita is now in the hands of fraud prosecutor Miguel Navarro, who will have to assign it to another official. Navas requested a report from Araya about the justifications for releasing Casas Vita manager.
years delivering musical
training to the Costa Rican youth
By A.M. Costa Rica staff
The National System of Music Education attached to the Ministry of Culture and Youth celebrates 11 years of social work through music today.
Equity, solidarity, cooperation, discipline, respect and human development are the transversal axes that the system promotes in each of the 4,000 students that now participate throughout the country, in its 22 locations.
The venues of Pavas, Acosta, La Libertad Park, Limón, San Ramón and Aguas Zarcas will offer simultaneous recitals today at 6 p.m. in their facilities.
In addition, throughout the month of June, there will be recitals in localities where there is a presence of system, such as Oreamuno, Coto Brus, Alajuela, Moravia, and even in the National Children's Hospital. The musical presentations are free and open to the public.
The music system was created in 2007 with the purpose of promoting the creation and development of music schools, orchestra programs and special programs to promote music throughout the country and to offer children and adolescents the opportunity to access music training programs.
The purpose was to use the process of musical training as a tool for human development in high-risk populations and to promote skills, mental abilities and attitudes that improve coexistence and interpersonal relationships.
"In 11 years, the system has managed to consolidate itself as a pioneer institution in the use of music and instruments in musical ensembles, with the aim of promoting the human development of children and teenagers. The best evidence of the importance of what system does is the huge number of requests from communities across the country that request a site opening every week,” said Ramiro Ramírez, director of the music system.
A.M. Costa Rica wire services photoAll celebration activities are free for all.
Ramírez also said that the music system has launched other initiatives that have allowed it to venture into other areas of training, such as the case of special programs, with the Orquesta por la Vida at the National Children's Hospital, the Orchestra of Joy in the Works of the Holy Spirit in Christ the King, the training of nutritional center teachers to use music as a stimulation tool in early childhood through an agreement with the Ministry of Health and the Music with Accessibility for All program, which allows children and teenagers with disabilities to develop skills through music.
|Ministry of Environment files judicial
complaint due to pollution in Limón rivers
By A.M. Costa Rica staff
The Ministry of Environment and Energy filed a criminal complaint for an ecological crime due to the contamination of several rivers in the Batán area in Limón. The authorities are also investigating the complaint of residents of the Pacuare River Association.
Community groups informed the Conservation Area La Amistad Caribe about the presence of dead fish in the channels of the sector between Caño Chiquerón and Laguna Madre de Dios May 21. One day later, officials of the Environmental Control and Protection Unit of the Caribbean Friendship Conservation Area inspected the site.
The ministry said there were a lot of dead fish. The authorities proceeded to locate the affected areas through a geo-positioning system. Samples of water and animals were also taken for chemical analyzes. Photographs were taken to document the evidence.
The samples went to the Regional Institute of Studies on Toxic Substances of the National University for its analysis.
After the inspection, the Environmental Control and Protection Unit and the directorate filed a formal complaint before the Judicial Investigation Organization of Batán for ecological crimes.
In addition, the environmental ministry, together with the Caribbean Environmental Unit of the National Coast Guard Service, carried out inspections of banana plantations in the area of influence of Caño Chiquerón, and requested logbooks on the use of agrochemicals.
Julio Knight courtesy photoSeveral samples of water and dead fishes were sent to the National University for further analysis.
The ministry also monitors the surrounding channels by using drones.
Julio Knight, president of the Barra de Pacuare Development Association, said that since 2003 he has fought and denounced the contamination. According to the community, pollution is caused by the arrival of chemicals which are used in banana and pineapple farms in the area.
|Tourism chamber defends reputation of
By A.M. Costa Rica staff
Both the National Tourism Chamber and the Costa Rican Tourism Board are disavowing any links to a Facebook site that says it defends tourists.
The National Chamber of Tourism offered its support to 10 companies that have been accused of non-compliance on the Facebook page.
The Tourism Board also was unhappy with the Facebook page called Defensoría del Turista ICT, also referred to as the ICT Tourist Ombudsman.
“Although the developers of the informational page use images, logos, telephone numbers, lists of businesses, information and links related to ICT, they are not authorized to use our official information, to say nothing of our institutional image,” the tourism board said. ICT is the acronym of the board in Spanish.
The Facebook site uses a banner containing the logo Esential Costa Rica, the national tourism slogan.
The chamber said "At the request of a group of our affiliates, the chamber communicates that the information made available on social networks published on the Facebook page called 'ICT Tourist Ombudsman,' does not belong to an official account of the Costa Rican Tourism Board.”
The board had already denied having any link with the profile in question and asked the users of the network not to enter the website, to denounce it or to stop following it.
A.M. Costa Rica wire services photo
Canatur raised awareness on how social media
fake news may impact companies.
"The information is clearly intended to undermine the reputation and credibility of the companies mentioned," the chamber said in a statement.
The affected companies are: One-Day Tours, Diego's Pura Vida Tour, To the Mountain with JM, Scential Tours, Japy Tours, Excursions for My Earth, Excursions Valle del Sol, Inside Tours Costa Rica, Ticos Sites and Ticos to Pata.
The website Wednesday featured a complaint by individuals who had been contacted by a tour company that appeared to be fraudulent.
community high-school rebuilds its infrastructure
By A.M. Costa Rica staff
Seven months after having hit the headlines because of the total flooding of its facilities, the Yímba Cájc Indigenous School in Rey Curré de Buenos Aires has already improved its infrastructure.
Despite being built on stilts and located 200 meters from the banks of the Río Grande de Térraba, an overflow covered it completely during Tropical Storm Nate in 2017.
Today the green areas have a 70 percent recovery, the classrooms have been rebuilt 70 percent and the ornamental plants look 90 percent restored.
Also, the productive agricultural areas of this institution are already in the process of growing fruit trees and other products such as bananas, beans, yucca and rice, which are used for the consumption of the student community.
In addition, the school’s enigmatic pre-Columbian spheres preserved their physical integrity and the House of Culture is in the process of recovery.
The efforts continue in order to recover the entire natural and cultural landscape of this institution.
Ministry of Public Security photo
Facilities were inaugurated on Aug. 31, 2013.
The school’s facilities were inaugurated on August 31, 2013. It has five pavilions of nine interconnected classrooms, a dining room, kitchen and a computer room.
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airplane plummets to a landing strip in
while carrying armed men, according to authorities
By A.M. Costa Rica staff
Wednesday police authorities reported the fall of a plane in Barra de Parismina, Limón.
Michael Soto, minister of Public Security, said that the alert entered through the 911 emergency service and officials were informed of an aircraft that rushed into a landing strip in the area.
The registration of the aircraft is TIRTA and that designation is not registered, so it would have been flying illegally, he added.
According to Soto, the neighbors told police officers that several men were traveling in the aircraft, apparently with firearms.
"What they say is that several men who apparently were armed were traveling. At the moment we are investigating because we do not have any evidence of drugs in the place," Soto said.
Soto added that, after an external review, the officers did not find any narcotics.
Ministry of Public Security photoPolice are in search of the plane's crew.
Staff of Aerial Surveillance Department flew over the area carrying mountain tracking devices with the special unit of support, police and K9 units.