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(506) 2223-1327                                 Published  Friday, Jan. 15, 2016, in Vol. 17, No. 10                                   Email us
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There are plenty of options to lose that holiday flab
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

For some expats, the appropriate Christmas Carol might better be "The 12 Pounds of Christmas" because that is what they put on with all the holiday food and drink.

So as the year begins they look into the mirror and make resolutions to lose the weight, give up alcohol, reject cigarettes and become better persons.

About now, some 15 days into January, the resolutions are getting a little shaky.

But there are options.

Everyone knows about Weight Watchers, and there are similar programs in Costa Rica. Some will even make house calls for those who are shy about attending meetings for the overweight.

Those not ready to declare their weight-loss goals can go online to at least a dozen calorie-counting programs. A good list is HERE! Some, like My Fitness Pal, have Costa Rican members and the food menu contains plenty of local products found at Mas x Menos. The Mayo Clinic also maintains a nutritional site.

Nearly all such sites promote exercise, too. And the eternal spring of Costa Rica is a great place to get in shape. Parque la Sabana is perfect for a daily run, but many persons just do it on their own streets.

The country has formal races and fun runs, most as fundraisers, every month. There is the Tamarindo Marathon, the Christmas Run, the Carrera Playas del Coco and the famous Fundación Anna Ross walk and run against Cancer in October.

The organizer Evolution Marketing maintains a list of events on its Web page, and not all are in the Central Valley.

Most expats are not going to challenge a full marathon. They can enjoy a lesser distance or jogging and the socializing that follows.

Naturally before running someone seeking
to lose weight should see a physician, and the doctor might have another option. The
expats at beach
A.M. Costa Rica file photo
It was a very filling holiday!

private hospitals have nutritionists on their staffs.

Medical officials at the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social always are railing about the population being overweight, and that institution also provides nutritional services. There also are programs to quit smoking.

There are plenty of commercial establishments, too, offering pills and supplements for weight loss. In fact, the Ministerio de Salud from time to time orders that some of these products be withdrawn from sale.

Another option are the many gyms and private clubs in Costa Rica. In addition to exercise facilities, many offer organized sports even for older expats. This is a more expensive option that also includes socializing opportunities. Some who use the gym facilities say they do so because of the greater security that does not involve running outdoors.

Of course, all the weight loss methods involve a lifestyle change. And this not always is bad.

One woman expat took off more than 60 pounds simply by dancing salsa every morning in the privacy of her home.

Plus she stopped engaging in the favorite expat exercise of aerobic beer drinking. She noted correctly that exercise must be coupled with eating fewer and more healthy calories.

The most drastic method that a few expats may elect would be surgery, and the private hospitals and even the Caja offer such bariatric procedures.

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Jan. 15, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 10
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A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.


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Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
Fuerza Pública officers said that crooks at Palmares used these razor blades to slice open backpacks to steal items while the owners remained unaware.

Police report seven arrests at Palmares

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

There were but seven arrests Thursday at the Fiesta de Palmares, the Fuerza Pública reported. Two of those were pickpockets, said the agency.

Meanwhile, the Cruz Roja said that its workers had treated 17 men and 24 women for various medical conditions and injuries. Three were hospitalized, the aid agency said.

Among those treated and transported was a rider who backed his mount into a drainage pit. He suffered minor injuries, but the 10-year-old horse had to be put down.

The big event of the day was the tope horse parade, and the large crowd attracted crooks. Police said that some of the crooks used razors to slice open backpacks to steal items such as cell telephones.

There were some 3,500 riders participating in the tope.

The fiesta became controversial at the legislature Thursday.  Nidia Jiménez Vásquez, a lawmaker with the Partido Acción Ciudadana claimed that only municipalities are allowed to put on fiestas. The Palmares event is organized by the Asociación Cívica Palmareña. She called that a private entity.

The lawmaker cited various sections of the legal codes as she spoke to her fellow legislators.  The criticism may have been linked to the upcoming municipal elections.

Union says its workers exposed to flu

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A union that represents public hospital workers said Thursday that there are eight cases of swine flu, AH1N1, at Hospital San Juan de Dios in San Jose's downtown and that other patients and staffers had been exposed to the disease for three days before precautions were taken.

The union, the Unión Nacional de Empleados de la Caja y la Seguridad Social, said that the flu sufferers were kept in the emergency area over the weekend until the nature of their ailment was disclosed by testing.

The statement said that medical workers were not informed or trained to handle the situation. It said that many persons had been exposed to the contagious disease by being in the emergency section of the hospital. It said that some workers became angry at a hospital official as a result of this lapse.

Quake and aftershocks located in Pacific

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A 5.1-magnitude quake took place at 10:40 a.m. Thursday in the Pacific about 48 kilometers southwest of  Savegre, Quepos. The quake was attributed to a deformation in the Coco tectonic plate, said the Red Sismológica Nacional.

There were three lesser quakes in the same area at 12:10 p.m, 6:47 p.m. and 8:28 p.m., the Red said.

Ostional residients receive some protection

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The legislature Thursday approved a law that amends the Refugio de Vida Silvestre Ostional to make it a mixed-use area to incorporate the private homes already there.

The wildlife refuge was created in1983, and those with homes there have been in jeopardy since then. The change allows the creation of concessions for those residents who already live on the refuge land.

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Chinese opera and two versions
of native culture to take the stage

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Traditional Chinese opera, an Indian tribe from the U.S. State of Washington and southern Costa Rica Boruca performers are scheduled to take the stage at the Teatro Nacional.

The Opera Wu de Zhejiang is being sponsored by the Embassy of the People's Republic.

There are two performances Jan. 23. One is at 11 a.m. and the other is at 7 p.m.

The opera company has a 400-year history, and the performance is described as a mix of singing, acrobatics, dance, theater and juggling.

The Makah Tribe from the State of Washington is sending seven performers who will present among other works the "Thunderbird Dance."

The visit is sponsored by the U.S. Embassy, and the performance is Feb. 8 at 3 p.m. The Makah are ocean hunters and that tradition carries over into the performance.

Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud Photo
This is a scene from the Boruca 'El jaguar de la ceniza.'

While here, the Makah performers are scheduled to visit Rey Curré south of Buenos Aries de Puntarenas where they will
witness an abbreviated version of the the traditional Boruca  "Juego de los Diablitos."

The Boruca presentation at the Teatro Nacional is Feb. 4 at 8 p.m. It is called “El jaguar de la ceniza,” which is reported to be based on the culture's mythology and world view.

The theater also plans a seminar Feb. 1at 3 p.m. where the rituals and masks of the Makah and Boruca will be the topic. This is a free event.

Two men and a teen held in investigation of wave of murders
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Judicial agents have detained two adults and a 17 year old who are suspected of being major players in the wave of murders the country experienced for the last two years.

The two men are 33 and 44. The younger man was detained Monday in Tarbaca.  Agents detained the 44 year old and the teen in Aserrí Wednesday afternoon, said the Judicial Investigating Organization.

The two adults are accused of being assassins. They are linked to the murder of two men June 7 in Los Guidos de Desamparados, said the investigating agency. There two men, 20 and 30, riding on a motorcycle were intercepted by men in a car and gunned down.

The pair also are accused of killing a woman motorist in Coyol de Alajuela last Nov. 7. The woman's vehicle was intercepted by men in a taxi. They riddled the vehicle with an
 AK-47 and perhaps other weapons. A man riding with the woman suffered injuries.  The woman, Marcia Alejandra Guzmán Salazar, 34, later was identified as the sister of an imprisoned drug dealer.

The 33 year old also is accused in the June 1 murder of a man in Los Guidos. The victim intervened in a dispute between two other men and died as a result, said agents

The teen is being held in relation to a triple murder that took place Aug. 2 in Loma Linda de Desamparados. Two adults already have been detained in the investigation of that crime.

When agents raided the dwelling in Aserrí they also found a quantity of cocaine and money. They said they arrested two men, 27 and 34, there as suspects of drug trafficking.

In 2014 and last year Desamparados became a battleground as drug gangs struggled for control. The violence was such that the 2014 Christmas carnival was canceled.

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Climate experts say carbon dioxide in air will delay new ice age arrival
By the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research news staff

Human activity may delay the next ice age by 100,000 years, according to a new study.

Writing in the journal Nature, researchers from the Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research say that even moderate human interference with the planet’s natural carbon balance could cause us to skip an entire glacial cycle.

“Even without man-made climate change we would expect the beginning of a new ice age no earlier than in 50,000 years from now, which makes the Holocene as the present geological epoch an unusually long period in between ice ages,” explains lead author Andrey Ganopolski. “However, our study also shows that relatively moderate additional anthropogenic CO2-emissions from burning oil, coal and gas are already sufficient to postpone the next ice age for another 50,000 years. The bottom line is that we are basically skipping a whole glacial cycle, which is unprecedented. It is mind-boggling that humankind is able to interfere with a mechanism that shaped the world as we know it.”
The researchers write that the relation between insolation, the solar radiation that reaches the Earth's surface, and carbon dioxide concentration has allowed them to explain the last eight glacial cycles.

“Our results indicate a unique functional relationship between summer insolation and atmospheric CO2 for the beginning of a large-scale ice-sheet growth which does not only explain the past, but also enables us to anticipate future .

periods when glacial inception might occur again,” Ganopolski said

Using system modeling that took into account atmosphere, ocean, ice sheets and global carbon cycle at the same time, the researchers analyzed ice volume in the Northern Hemisphere.

“Due to the extremely long life-time of anthropogenic CO2 in the atmosphere, past and future emissions have a significant impact on the timing of the next glacial inception,” co-author Ricarda Winkelmann says. “Our analysis shows that even small additional carbon emissions will most likely affect the evolution of the Northern Hemisphere ice sheets over tens of thousands of years, and moderate future anthropogenic CO2-emissions of 1,000 to 1,500 gigatons of carbon are bound to postpone the next ice age by at least 100,000 years.”

The researchers said that at the beginning of a new ice age, there are periods of very low solar radiation in the summer. This, they say, is happening, but so far there is no indication of another ice age on the horizon.

“Like no other force on the planet, ice ages have shaped the global environment and thereby determined the development of human civilization. For instance, we owe our fertile soil to the last ice age that also carved out today’s landscapes, leaving glaciers and rivers behind, forming fjords, moraines and lakes. However, today it is humankind with its emissions from burning fossil fuels that determines the future development of the planet,” said paper co-author and institute Director Hans Joachim Schellnhuber. “This illustrates very clearly that we have long entered a new era, and that in the Anthropocene humanity itself has become a geological force. In fact, an epoch could be ushered in which might be dubbed the Deglacial.”

Vacation, travel and hospitality

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Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
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The Hidden Garden Art Gallery near the Liberia airport is a great place to find quality remembrances of Costa Rica to take home or to decorate your home or office in Costa Rica.  We also offer commissioned pieces so you can create your own unique masterpiece to cherish forever.  With more than 60 artists on exhibit and fine art in 15 rooms full of paintings, prints, sculptures, and diverse artistic expressions, we are easy to locate just 5 kms west of the Daniel Oduber International Airport. Visit our Web site at
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Gallery hours: Tuesdays-Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Tel. 2667-0592 / 8386-6872; U.S. telephone 702-953-7073. International shipping available.

Click photo for another video

The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

 (as reported by the moving companies)
Visit many rental options to actually experience the price/amenity options available in more of the areas chosen by Expats for security, comfort, and quality of life.

Meet many Expats who are willing to share their experiences and how the tour has value long after the “lust” wears off.
See how to choose a Retirement tour video by past guest!

Ask the others what you get for your money, and then compare the quality of accommodations, quality, quantity and variety of food and drink to measure the best value for your money. 

Learn how others “talk the talk” and learn who really can “walk the walk”

Please visit my Web site  to contact my references.
George Lundquist, retirement, relocation columnist, Guide & Developer/Builder.


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Real estate rental services (paid category)

Spectacular rentals are available for low weekly prices on at resorts such as Bahia Turquesa Residences and Villas Sol Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. We have 
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Fully Furnished American style Apartments for Rent
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A.M. Costa Rica's  
Fifth news page
Salsa Lizano
San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Jan. 15, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 10
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Planned Parenthood sues
its anti-abortion antagonist

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The leading U.S. reproductive health services organization, Planned Parenthood, filed a lawsuit Thursday against the anti-abortion group responsible for secretly filming abortion providers over a two-year span.

The lawsuit filed in federal court in San Francisco against the anti-abortion group Center for Medical Progress charges that the group acted illegally when it secretly recorded videos damaging to the organization.

The videos, which were released in July, sparked widespread controversy by purporting to show Planned Parenthood officials trying to negotiate prices for aborted fetal tissue.

Under U.S. federal law, donated human fetal tissue may be used for research, but profiting from its sale is prohibited.

The suit accuses the anti-abortion group of violation of privacy, fraudulent misrepresentation, breach of contract, and trespassing in connection with the video-recording campaign.

Dawn Laguens, vice president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, again denied the organization has ever profited from its tissue donation programs.

"This entire smear campaign is a fraud built on illegal acts and a web of lies," she said.

Since their release, the videos have triggered a virulent backlash against the health-services provider by conservative lawmakers in Congress and state legislatures calling for funding cuts.

Indonesia might harbor
200-300 terror backers

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Indonesian officials estimate there are between 200 and 300 Islamic State sympathizers in country.

The Islamic State claimed responsibility for carrying out Thursday's coordinated bomb and gun attacks in Indonesia's capital Jakarta that left seven people dead, including all five attackers.

According to reports, the Islamic State has been recruiting in Indonesia, the world’s largest majority Muslim nation.  Hundreds of Indonesians have left the country to join the group in Syria.

According to Greg Fealy, an associate professor at the Australian National University who studies terrorism in Indonesia, said the terror threat in Indonesia has been rising since mid-2014.

Al Chaidar, a faculty member at the University of Malikussaleh in Indonesia, said in November that there were many Islamic State sympathizers in Indonesia, though he did not have exact numbers. 

Indonesian officials estimate there are between 200 and 300 sympathizers. The chief of Indonesia’s counterterrorism police, known as Detachment 88, said at a seminar in December that the Islamic State had repeatedly threatened to attack Indonesia, including after the attacks in Paris in October.

Hundreds of fighters from Indonesia have reportedly traveled to join the Islamic State in Syria, including those with families who news reports say want to live in an Islamic country. Indonesia’s counterterrorism agency said in December that as many as 384 of the nation’s citizens have joined the Islamic State.

Chaidar, however, said he believes that about 611 Indonesians are now training in Syria and that some of them have returned.

There are conflicting reports about the exact numbers of Indonesians who have returned. Government reports suggest anywhere from 169 to 300 Indonesians who fought for the Islamic State have returned home.

In order to counter the terrorist threat, the Indonesian government is pursuing a two-pronged policy of law enforcement operations and de-radicalization programs.

Since most Islamic State members in Indonesia are young, the country’s counterterrorism agency is trying to involve young people in a counter-radicalization drive and peace programs.

U.S. drone strike is credited
with killing top ISIS leader

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Officials in eastern Afghanistan say a U.S. drone strike Thursday killed Islamic State’s top commander in the area, which the militants call Khorasan, along with at least 11 other insurgents.

The missile attack by the unmanned aircraft occurred in Achin, a volatile district in a remote part of Nangarhar province, where the Islamic State is believed to have set up its headquarters.

U.S. military officials in Kabul confirmed an air strike was launched in that area Thursday, but said they were unable to determine whether Islamic State's local commander, Hafiz Saeed Khan, was among the casualties.

A spokesman for the Nangarhar province governor said it was officially determined that Hafiz Saeed Khan, the Islamic State emir for Khorasan, and his fighters were hit by the missile, which caused a massive explosion in Achin's Bandar locality about 4 p.m. local time, villagers told reporters.

The pace of missile attacks by U.S. drones has increased recently, and scores of militants at Islamic State bases in Nangarhar are reported to have been killed.

Pope Francis treats the needy
to a day at the local circus

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

More than a thousand people, from the homeless to paroled prisoners to refugees to impoverished children, were treated to a day at the circus Thursday in Rome, courtesy of Pope Francis.

The Vatican ferried the guests to the big-top show on the outskirts of Rome, the latest gesture of affection for the poor and needy, which has been a hallmark of Francis' papacy.

Francis did not attend the show, but the audience was treated to such typical circus acts as knife throwing, prancing white horses and singing.

One of the attendees, a homeless Polish man called Marek, said the event satisfied the common need for a bit of fun.

"We can't always be sad for the things that have happened. We need to be able to find a small, small space to be lighthearted," he said.

The event also offered showers, shaves and medical care in St. Peter's Square for the homeless and needy.

The owner of the Rony Roller Circus called Thursday's show a very emotional one.

Francis met with a group of circus performers last year, saying they create beauty that is good for the soul.

International migration said
to have surged over 15 years

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The number of people migrating to foreign countries surged by 41 percent in the last 15 years to reach 244 million in 2015, according to a United Nations study released this week. Of those people, 20 million are refugees.

The U.N. is planning a series of meetings to address migration in 2016, including a March 30 gathering in Geneva where countries will be invited to pledge resettlement spots for Syrians fleeing civil war.

But while the Syrian refugee crisis has gripped the world’s attention, it is but a drop in the sea of international migration.

The vast majority go to Europe, home to 76 million international migrants in 2015, or two-thirds of the total.

“In Europe, the population would have declined during the period 2000-2015 in the absence of positive net migration,” the report said. Even if current migration levels continue, Europe’s population is still projected to decline over the next 35 years because of its surplus of deaths over births.

By individual country, however, the United States had by far the largest portion of the world’s migrants, 47 million, or a fifth of the total.

Germany and Russia shared the second spot with about 12 million each, followed by Saudi Arabia (10 million), Britain (9 million) and the United Arab Emirates (8 million.)

Canada ranks seventh on this measure with slightly fewer than 8 million migrants.

Missed refueling rendezvous
blamed for Iranian captures

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A refueling rendezvous that went astray and an engine issue are key pieces of the puzzle behind the incident involving the 10 U.S. Navy sailors who were held earlier this week by Iran, according to U.S. officials.

The U.S. Navy boats and their crews were detained for 16 hours by Iranian Revolutionary Guards after apparently veering into Iranian waters in the Persian Gulf near Farsi Island. The boats had intended to meet up with a U.S. Coast Guard boat for refueling, but never rendezvoused, a U.S. official said.

The sailors were traveling through the Persian Gulf from Kuwait toward Bahrain when U.S. controllers lost contact with them Tuesday. The Revolutionary Guard members boarded the U.S. vessels and surrounded the crew members, a second U.S. official said.

"They went off course somehow. Initial indications are that when they realized they were in Iranian waters, the engine was not able to get to full power for at least one of the boats," the official said.

An investigation is underway into further details surrounding the incident. When it happened, a U.S. strike group in the area was tasked with the search and rescue.

"When conducting a search and rescue, you are allowed to enter into countries' territorial waters," one official said. Some assets available included the guided missile cruiser USS Anzio, fixed wing aircraft, and helicopters.

The search and rescue was simultaneous with diplomatic outreach, one of the U.S. officials said, and searchers did locate the missing vessels at Farsi Island, but could see the sailors were not in the boats.

"We had visual of the boats," the official said.

U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said resolution of the incident was a success for diplomacy, and Defense Secretary Ash Carter said he was grateful to have the service members “back in our hands.”

Obama is the obvious target
as GOP candidates debate

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

With just under three weeks left until the start of the presidential nominating process, the top Republican contenders faced off Thursday in what was expected to be a contentious debate in the influential early primary state of South Carolina.

The candidates began by taking aim at the man they hope to replace: President Barack Obama.

In his opening statement, U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas slammed the president's handling of an incident earlier this week in which 10 U.S. sailors were briefly held by Iran after their boats apparently wandered into Iran's territorial waters in the Persian Gulf.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie also focused on Obama, promising to kick his rear end out of the White House and referring to him as a boy and a petulant child. Christie also took issue with the president's largely optimistic State of the Union address.

"On Tuesday night I watched storytime with Barack Obama, and it sounded like everything was going amazing," Christie said. He also slammed Obama's handling of the sailor incident.

"In a Christie administration, they would know much better than to do that," he added.

Another prominent focus early in the debate was Democratic presidential front-runner Hillary Clinton.

Former Florida governor Jeb Bush brought up the controversy over Mrs. Clinton's use of a personal email server during her time as secretary of State, saying it could distract her if she became president.

"If she gets elected, her first 100 days, instead of setting an agenda, she might be going back and forth between the White House and the courthouse," Bush said, to applause.

Taking center stage at the nationally televised debate was billionaire real estate mogul Donald Trump, who continues to lead in almost all national polls.

Trump defended his tough proposals on border security, which some have said are discriminatory against Mexicans and Muslims.

"We can't let all these people come into our country and break our borders. We can't do it," Trump said.

On the campaign trail, Trump has repeatedly brought up the issue of whether Cruz is qualified under the constitution to become president, since he was born to a Cuban father and an American mother in Canada.

Addressing the controversy, Cruz accused Trump of political opportunism in bringing up the issue. "The Constitution hasn't changed since September, but the poll numbers have," he said.

The frequent clashes between Cruz and Trump were one of the main themes of the debate.

Three ticket holders share
record Powerful lottery loot

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Three lucky winners will share the biggest Powerball lottery in American history, a record-shattering $1.6 billion.

The players' identities aren't yet publicly known, but the winning tickets were sold in Munford, Tennessee; Melbourne Beach, Florida, and Chino Hills, California, where an impromptu celebration took place Wednesday night when word got out that a local 7-Eleven store had sold one of the tickets. People were clapping, chanting and dancing in front of TV cameras inside the 7-Eleven. Many were taking selfies with the store’s clerk.

“It’s almost like we won, even though we didn’t, because our community won,” said a resident of Chino Hills, a Los Angeles suburb of about 80,000 residents.

The store owner who sold the ticket, identified as M. Faroqui, has a lot to celebrate as well. According to state regulations, he will share a check for $1 million from Powerball with the 7-Eleven company.

“I am very happy and excited,” said Faroqui, who has worked at the store for about 10 years. He said he was sure he had personally sold the ticket.

The winning ticket in Melbourne Beach was sold at a Publix grocery store.

“We were informed this morning about 5:30 that this location did sell one of the winning tickets,” said Dwayne Stevens, a representative of Publix, a well-known Florida grocery chain.

In Munford, a town of about 6,000 people north of Memphis, three stores sell Powerball tickets. It was not immediately clear which retailer had sold the winning ticket and would get a $25,000 check.

The winning numbers Wednesday night were 4-8-19-27-34 and Powerball 10. The odds of winning the jackpot were 1 in 292.2 million.

The three winners must share the prize money equally. Each can let his take be invested and thereby collect 30 annual payments totaling an estimated $533 million, or take one-third of a $983.5 million cash payout all at once, $327.8 million.

The jackpot started with $40 million Nov. 4. Texas Lottery Executive Director Gary Grief said that Powerball offered the world’s biggest jackpot, and he offered advice for the winners.

“Hopefully, they’re out there getting the best legal and financial adviser they can find before they come in and claim that wonderful prize,” Grief said.

That's good advice. According to the National Endowment for Financial Education, roughly 70 percent of people who receive cash windfalls lose them within a few years.

The previous jackpot record was $656 million in a Mega Millions drawing in 2012.

Powerball tickets are sold in 44 states, Puerto Rico, the District of Columbia and the U.S. Virgin Islands.

Many residents in Nevada, a state that does not sell tickets, crossed the border into California to try their luck. There were even a number of Canadians who crossed into U.S. territory in an attempt to win the $1.6 billion.

Tickets were also sold in China, thanks to brokers on the Internet, many of whom demanded a cut of the winnings if any of their clients got a lucky break. The $2 tickets were sold at a premium, going for prices from $3 to $4.60 apiece.

Powerball winners don’t have to be American citizens or have permanent legal status in the country.
Real estate-related services (paid category)

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Office phone: 506-2446-0543
Cell phone: 506-8898-9398
or 506-8314-8090


Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

Rich Coast Rollover
Thinking of Buying a Vacation or Retirement Home
in Costa Rica?

Rich Coast Realty is a full-service real estate company with property listings in Escazú, Santa Ana, Jacó, Esterillos, Bejuco, Palo Seco, Manuel Antonio, and beyond. We offer efficient, personalized service always protecting our client’s interests. We work hard to find you the property of your dreams, and assist with legal advice, residency, starting corporations, opening bank accounts, etc. Contact us today with your questions about buying property in, and relocating to Costa Rica. With 11 years experience in Costa Rica real estate, we look forward to hearing from you.
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Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo
Photo montage of penthouse
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Mafi Real Estate: Houses, lots and farms in Costa Rica
If you do not find, what are you looking for, contact us
WE HAVE A NETWORK OF OVER 500 brokers across the country to get what you are looking for.
English Calls: Miguel Fiatt Sauma or Paule Ortiz
Phone/Fax.+506 2238-5029
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The experts in buying property in Costa Rica, with more than 20 years experience and the largest networked team of agents in the country.  We can help you learn if investing in Costa Rica is right for you with our low-key, educational approach to sales. Our professional agents can tell you more about sCosta Rica properties, including condos, homes, lots and commercial real estate.  Call us: Ocean Surf and Sun Int. Realty Ldta at 011 (506) 2653-0073 or send us an email at:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

La Uruca condo
Situated three miles west of the capital, eight miles from the airport. Quiet, secluded area within walking distance to a commercial center including a hotel, six restaurants,  next to two bus line stops. Car ownership is not needed. January-March air temperatures are 72 to 80 degrees F. Apartment 1,200 sq. ft (100 sq. meters), on ground floor, indoor  patio. Large windows without bars, parquet floors. Spacious living room-dining area, two bedrooms, maid's room, two bathrooms, four closets  (including walk-in), fully equipped kitchen (refrigerator, washing machine, small appliances, all necessary utensils, work tools).  Many amenities, (pictures, indoor plants, sewing machine, books, keyboard, dishes, glassware, silverware). Annual cost of maintenance about $1,350 includes water, landscaping service, garbage disposal, 24-7 security and property taxes. Price $120,000. Available for viewing:  Mid-January to beginning of April. Contact:  USA :  585 544-4296. Costa Rica : 506 2231-0410

ocean-view home
Property size: 3,405.14 sq. mts. or 37,000 sq. ft.   Gorgeous house built 5 years ago to U.S. standards on 37,000 sq. ft. titled property. This home (240 sq. mtrs or 2,600 sq. ft) has 360-degree ocean and mountain views and electric gated private road access. The large open style home has soaring teak ceillings, 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, custom cabinetry and ceramic tiles throughout and a double-car electric garage door. Their is also a beautiful, large swimming pool surrounded by exotic garden, laundry room and bodega. This is a very special and rare property because of the incredible view and excellent location. This one of a kind home and property is truly a must to see. all custom built furnitures included. Photo gallery:  CLICK HERE!  Please contact Jack, Cell phone number  (506) 8812-1789.  Contact email:

For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant.
Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning.
Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing.
Toll free US phone 877-778-8515
In Costa Rica 8307-0164

Goetl in Palo Seco

Charming small oceanfront hotel for sale in Playa Palo Seco
Ideal oceanfront location with back up to a mangrove estuary. The
charming small hotel has a fully equipped kitchen, bar and restaurant and is exceptionnally well maintained. Located on a very private beach of the central Pacific Coast of Costa Rica 35 minutes north of Quepos-Manuel Antonio and 45 minutes south of  Playa Jacó. The main building is a two-storey house with 12 bedrooms. The lot measures 3,054 M2. Beautiful gardens around the large pool and exceptional flora and fauna. Well mentioned in tourist guides like Lonely Planet and Guide Ulysse. Offered at $999,000. USD
or call (506) 8707-1037  (506) 2778-8408

private ranch home
Small private ranch for sale
This exceptional private ranch sits on a 9+ hectare lot and supports 15-20 horses. Only 2 hours south of San José, on the road to Puriscal. Roomy stalls all with drains, water hookup, lights and fans, grooming and shoeing área. Two-story house all furnished and cowboy house. Don't miss your chance on that turnkey operation.  Offered at $749,000.
E-mail:  or call (506) 8707-1037 
(506) 2778-8408 Web:

Blakesmore one

Blakemoret  two

Costa Rica tropical paradise beach house for sale

Tropical five-acre forested beachfront property with custom house and guest casita on the Osa Península, south Pacific Coast. Abundant wildlife, exotic plants and fruits, secluded beach.  Located 8 kms. south of Puerto Jiménez on the way to Matapalo and Corcovado National Park. Great Price $750,000. Contact Roger. Phone number  (506) 6142-7228   Email: Watch this video for full details.

Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: 
Check out slide show HERE!

A beautiful American style suburban home just reduced.

A beautiful American style suburban home, 2,700 sq ft of living space with 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, front and rear living rooms, laundry area, kitchen and small attached library nook, arched windows and doors and connected hallways, exotic wood interior ceilings and trim, tile floors thru-out.  The lot is 835 m2 with mature landscape and orchid nurseries surrounding the house. There is an enclosed workshop and BBQ area in the back yard with lots of storage under roof, plus a nursery for an herb/vegetable garden.  This is a very well-kept property with many upgrades, a private feel but yet only 5 minutes from the center of town.  Pérez Zeledón is the commercial hub of the southern zone and considered to be one of the best places to live in all of Costa Rica, the perfect size town, not too big and not too small.  The beach is 45 minutes to the west and a short drive to the cool mountains is to the east. In between, this large valley has a moderate climate.  Pérez has plenty of modern goods and services, an excellent farmers market, private schools, private doctors and clinics, all you need without having to go to the crazy madness of San José.    Just reduced to $199,000.  Call  Jeff: 8824-8113 or 8725-8176.  Email:


Caribbean paradise: CAHUITA

New home, beautiful well-built house 200 meters from a lovely beach. Very private, fully titled, excellent water well.  2 large bedrooms, 2 full baths, tub, large open floor plan 26-foot sliding glass doors open to covered porch. Encircling back yard are coral rocks 10 feet tall and behind jungle reserve. Lots of birds and wildlife. House 240 mts. sq, 2,400 sq ft. Lot 1,850 mts. or 19,000 sq. ft. Price $179,000. Very nice neighborhood. Contact 2755-0014 or   More photos HERE!

Grecia casa
Mountain home for sale
in Grecia.
Less than a year old. Owners are motivated.  All information regarding the home as well as many photos can be found at Mountain view home for sale Grecia, Costa Rica.   Contact email:

puriscal photo
Costa Rica home for sale $163,500 / 2bedroom - 1,984 ft2

Central Valley view home: 10 minutes from Santiago de Puriscal and shopping, hospital services, and soon Maxi Pali. Only one hour to San José or Pacific beaches.
- On .55-acre lot with river on one boundary
- Area under roof, 1,984 sq. ft., Area inside walls, 925 sq. ft. Steel, recycled
      Styrofoam, and concrete construction.
- 2 ½ years old with central living room and kitchen, 2 bedrooms and 2 baths,
       ceramic tile throughout.
- Central Valley volcano and SJO airport views from every room.
- Vaulted ceilings give bright open feeling.
- Entrance from concrete road to large graveled parking area
- VERY energy efficient with VERY low property taxes.
- Covered attached carport with entrance to front door or laundry-guest bath
- 2 carport storage bodegas.
- 12 foot x 14 foot storage bodega
- Security lights, And Amcrest day & night video recorder system.
- Producing banana trees, and mango, bread fruit, and guanabana trees

Includes: Refrigerator, gas stove & oven with electric grill element, microwave, electric washer-gas dryer stacked style, gas on demand whole house water heater. Other furnishings are negotiable. ICE electric service and land line phone. Bajo Burgos Water district. Metro-wireless WiFi is available. Tigo Star Satellite T.V. House is in a Costa Rican corporation, will transfer shares. Contract or call 506 2416-9324.  Additional photos are available on Flickr album

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Live the dream!
Several profitable businesses, including a regional radio station, are for sale in Costa Rica. Certain purchases can provide the new owner with residency as well as a great lifestyle. So live your dream while making a profit. Contact:

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Jan. 15, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 10
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News from the BBC up to the minute

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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
This is a start on the 2016 confiscation totals

Confiscated items varied in 2015

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Fuerza Pública says that its officers confiscated 7,465 cans of beer, 2,446 bottles of alcohol, 371 car batteries, 424 watches and clothing, perfume and beauty items.

The agency said that the confiscations mostly were made at the Kilometer 35 checkpoint on the Interamericana Sur. The agency admitted that the motive for smuggling was that such items are sold cheaper in Panamá and that those bringing them into the country did not declare them at the border and pay customs duty.

And this week police reported stopping and confiscating 3,000 cans of beer from a pickup.

Ministerio de Seguridad Pública photo
Police officer gives a homeless man a food package
Police mingle with San José homeless

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The security ministry has created a special unit of police to mingle with and provide food, clothing and other assistance to the homeless. The unit last was on the San Jose streets Wednesday night and Thursday morning.

The effort is not considered just charity.  Raúl Rivera Bonilla, director of the Unidades Especializadas, said that the action allows police to learn the realities of the street and take preventative actions. The unit was created last year.

Although the numbers are uncertain, one estimate is that there are 800 homeless in the metro area

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From Page 7:

More than half of emails are considered spam

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Anyone with an email account knows that there are plenty of spam messages. Industry estimates are that from 52 to 58 percent of emails are unwanted spam.

In Costa Rica, the numbers seem to be augmented by financially challenged businesses that seek a cheap way to market.

The problem is that these commercial messages come mixed with dangerous spams that seek to implant hostile programs on computers and in some cases hold the computers hostage.

The United States, Vietnam and China are the world's biggest sources of spam, according to, a tracking service. says the world's 10 biggest individual spammers are in the United States, Canada, Ukraine and Germany.

Just 10 years ago Costa Rica hosted international spammers, and the country's computers were from time to time blacklisted by the rest of the world. That no longer seems to be the case because the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad and Radiográfica Costarricense S.A. cracked down and vigorously closed down spam rackets.

However there have been an increase in the number of legitimate marketing firms that use the cheap email technique. Unfortunately, these emails mix with the dangerous spam messages. And more is coming says that the amount of seasonal spam traditionally increases in summer, and that this is true for both advertising and malicious spam. The holiday season saw spam with a travel theme: fake notifications from booking services, airlines and hotels were used to spread malicious programs, it added.

One that is all too common in Costa Rica is the fake message saying that a package could not be delivered. Spam experts say that by opening this message, a computer user can unleash a program that holds the computer hostage until a certain amount of money is paid in a wire transfer or by untraceable bitcoin.

There also has been a proliferation of emails seeking payment for a fake debt or pretending to be a receipt for a bank deposit. The spammer's goal is to have the recipient open the attachment.