Del Rey updated ad
A.M. Costa Rica
Your daily English-language news source Monday through Friday

Weather ear
Cocal for Jan. 20
Pura Vida
Del Mar
(506) 2223-1327                                    Published Monday, July 27, 2015, in Vol. 15, No. 146                             Email us
Real Estate
About us
Rock construction

Emails were key evidence in fall of respected lawyer
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The prosecution's case against well-known lawyer Arcelio Hernandez Mussio was aided by emails he had exchanged with U.S. investors.

The lawyer, whose last office was in Jacó, is expected to appeal his sentence, but the 116-page written decision by the Tribunal de Penal de Puntarenas is detailed and comprehensive. The court sentenced the lawyer to 10 years in prison and ordered him to pay back more than $1 million to seven investors.

The would-be investors are Justin Dean Hamel, Gretchen Hamel, Sherry Lee Meehan, Chistine Larson, Suresh Kumar Krishnan, Ray David Krueger-Koplin and Suzane Therese Krueger-Koplin, according to the decision.

The court said that Hernández took some $626.698.68 that had been entrusted to him for the purchase of the Hotel Rancharlo in Sámara, which was owned through a corporation by Canadian Michael Lefrance.

Testimony at the trial said that Lefrance was so affected by the failure of the sale that he ended up selling the property for half price, returned to Canada and committed suicide. That was not part of the actions for which Hernández was tried.

The court heard that Hernández was a well-respected, bilingual lawyer and that Justin Hamel had employed him for legal business in the past. The investor relied on printed advertisements as well as Internet sources to verify the lawyer's standing, according to the decision.

Hernández and his firm, Bufete Hernández Mussio & Asociados, advertised in A.M. Costa Rica up until last September. He offered escrow services and correctly said his firm was registered with the Superintendencia de Entidades Financieras, which is what Hamel was seeking.

The court in its decision made a distinction that Hernández was convicted of his activities as an escrow agent and not as a lawyer or notary. The court declined to rule that he could no longer practice. The conviction was for fraudulent administration.

As a defense, Hernández said he was suffering from depression over a divorce, had an obsessive-compulsive ailment and termed the legal situation traumatic.

The court said that he showed he did not have any metal impairment because on the day he was supposed to surrender the money for the real estate deal and the following day he transferred $250,000 to HSBC Bank de New York. The court said that not only did this show he was in his right mind but that he also gave the bank fictitious sources for the money.

The Hernández case is important because only infrequently do lawyers face trial for taking the money of their clients. A.M. Costa Rica has received a number of complaints from investors who lost funds. For the most part, unlike the group that involved the Hamels, most of those who complained did not have the resources or the will to continue with a criminal case.

Some said that the lawyers who took their
A.M. Costa Rica file photo
Arcelio Hernandez Mussio

money offered to give them a promissory note and promised that they would pay back the funds. Testimony in the Hernández case said he made a similar offer, and if the investors accepted his pagaré, as such a note is called here, legal action would have been precluded.

Hamel and his fellow investors did not waste any time. Hernández failed to show up at a closing in Nicoya June 1, 2010.  He excuse was that he missed a plane flight. His secretary also told the investors that he had checked into a hospital, said the transcript.

The investors moved quickly, and judicial police raided the San Joaquín de Flores apartment of Hernández June 23.

At last report, Hernández still was in prison even though an appeal was expected. The court said he had lived years in the United States and had contacts there, as well as the $250,000. The judges considered him a flight risk.

The email messages between the lawyer and  Hamel showed up in part in the transcript. The messages clearly show that Hernández was supposed to escrow the money and deliver it to the seller on closing. The transcript reports the date and time of the emails down to the exact second.

Instead, the evidence showed, the lawyer transferred the money from his company account to his personal accounts. A Judicial Investigating Organization accountant testified to these facts at trial.

The judges involved were Eduardo Rojas Sáenz, Simón Angulo Arredondo and Miguel Porras Cascante

The prosecutor in the case was Liseeth Garro Arce. The investors were represented in a parallel civil action by  Douglas Murillo Murillo. Hernández was defended by  Alejandra Araya.

The case was decided July 7, but the lengthy written decision was not available until late last week.

In the civil part of the decision, the court awarded each litigant $75,000 in moral damages and actual damages of $600,000. The court noted that the investors had borrowed some money from parents and friends to generate the cash needed to complete the deal.

veteran's clinic
Manuel Antonio
Luna Nueva

exchange rate
our site
to our  daily digest
Real estate
Tourism and services Display
ad info
ad info



Thunder thrasher

rss graphic
Twitter link
facebook logo

Have you seen our crossword puzzle?


Peace of Mind

association of residents

What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
Real Estate
About us
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission.
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for more details


A.M. Costa Rica's
Second news page
Green season
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, July 27, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 146
Real Estate
About us

Professional Directory
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.

Hearing Services

Clínica Dinamarca Hearing Center
Audiometry – Impedance
Hearing aids
Batteries & accessories
Electronic laboratory
Earplugs: Loud noise & swimming
Cochlear implants
Bone-anchored hearing aids (BAHA)
Free hearing tests for Senior Citizens on Wednesdays
We accept hearing aids prescriptions from C.C.S.S.
For the US veterans we can help with the procedures

Address: 250 meters south from KFC Paseo Colón, San José,
Costa Rica
Phone: (506) 2221-4545
(506) 2221-4646
Follow us on Facebook click here.
Dinamarca logo


Dr. Gray

Dr. Lucinda Gray

California Licensed
International Practice
New World Meditation

CR (506) 2228-2041

Insurance professionals

The Garrett Insurance Group
-Brokerage fully licensed by the
-Experience since 1980.
-Bilingual English/Spanish.
-Represent all the best insurance
       companies in Costa Rica,
       BMI, Blue Cross, Blue
       Shield, ASSA, INS, etc.
-Correspondents of WILLIS.
-Connections in all of Central
-Superb communications.
-Prize-winning Web site.
-English policy extracts.
-Helps you settle your claims.
Centro Comercial El Pueblo, Local #125, San José, Costa Rica.    Phone:  ( 506 ) 2233-9520
E-mail :
More information HERE!

Residency experts

Residency in Costa Rica
A full service immigration agency
U.S. and San José offices
Getting and authenticating documents can be a chore. —

We know how to do it. Experienced with many nationalities. Up-to-date on
Costa Rica's evolving immigration law.

Pensionado and rentista. Your first stop for smooth, professional service and a positive experience. Javier Zavaleta
Tel: (323) 255-6116


Ms. Summers
Marlene B. Summe
U.S. Income Tax Services
Marlene B. Summers
Tax Accountant
File your FBAR for current or past due years
File your past three years tax return under the
Streamlined  Procedure which mitigates penalties
File amended tax returns

Personalized service      Competitive rates
Phone (506) 2289-6590 or (506) 8750-2316

U.S. Tax International
Plus Costa Rican taxes, accounting, and legal
 services. Over 15 years in Costa Rica

U.S. Tax
(English spoken). Tamarindo office hours now available.  If you or anyone you know would like an appointment in Tamarindo, please call our San José office at 2288-2201 to make an appointment.
Contact Us:
 U.S 786-206-9473         CR 506-2288-2001
FAX: 506 2231-3300
Web page:

James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
US Income Tax,  U.S. GAAP Accounting
& Business Consulting
pecializing in all matters of concern to U.S. taxpayers residing abroad including:
Uncle Sam's
IRS filing requirements of foreign income tax exclusion (up to $100,800 for 2015).
Past-due tax returns: Taxpayers filing before an IRS notice do not face criminal sanctions.
Reporting foreign financial assets: FBAR and foreign corporations.
Up-to-date FACTA news.
All US Tax return preparation:
individual, business, estate and trust.
eFile returns: secure with faster refunds.
Business consulting to facilitate working in Costa Rica.

Telephone 8305-3149 or 2256-8620

Fine art restoration and conservation
Gilbert Carmichael
Master Art Restorer, A.I.C. Certified
European and U.S. standards. USPAP.
For more information please contact Weronika Nossowicz at 8388-5328  or email HERE!
 • Paintings
• Sculptures
• Murals
• Porcelain and ceramic
• Works on paper restoration
• Conservation curatorial

• Art expert services
• Other restoration services
* Analysis for condition
• Art related insurance and
        damage evaluations
• Art collection consultation
Experts in fine art restoration and conservation for the tropics. We clean mildew, mold, etc; repair, restore and offer art expert and curatorial services.

Legal services

Real Estate Closing Services
Lic Matta

Lic. Pablo Mata Ferreto, MBA.

Legal – Financial Adviser

Real Estate and Business Transactions

Avoid Real Estate scams, get independent advice and have due diligence performed before signing or making a deposit.

Phone number: (506) 8853-0000

Land surveying services

René Sánchez Quirós
30+ years of experience in:

Mr. Sanchez
Survey (cadastral) maps
Boundary markers
Calculations of terrain

Call me:
CR phone number:   +506-2290-4573
CR Cell phone number: +506-8383-0083

Real estate agents and services

Ms. Gonzalez
Noemy González
Real Estate Adviser
Bienes Inmuebles

We are a real estate company specializing in prompt & effective attention for you. English, Spanish & Italian spoken. Professionals in the sale of properties such as commercial premises, homes & apartments through our advertising & marketing services.
Vision: Making realty dreams a reality.
Mission: Your #1 property adviser with real value in a changing world.
Address: Cariari, Heredia, Costa Rica.
Local phone (506) 2239-3883
Mobile (506) 8302-3883
E-mail :


A Name You Trust, Professionalism You Deserve
Tom Ghormley and the dream team!
in CR since 1979

Buying? Selling? Renting?
We Can Do It!
Let us help you live your dreams!
Beachfront, Views, Mountains,
Beaches, Houses, Condos,
Hotels, Restaurants, Projects,
Commercial, Investments and more

 Century 21 Jacó Beach Realty
Playa Jacó, Puntarenas, Costa Rica
U. S. A. phone numbers:  (213) 283-5168 
or Toll Free: (877) 746-3868
Costa Rica phone number: (506) 2643-3356

CR Beach
Jaco Beach Central Pacific Real Estate
"LOWEST PRICES EVER and this Inventory is  being sold now " says CR Beach Investment Real Estate Broker & certified Realtor Jeff Fisher.
Why Here?
#1: SJO Int'l Airport & S.J. suburbs are an hour +
Jeff  Fisher
#2: The Jacó area has all the important services you need & is growing!

Yes, after 21 years, we know Costa Rica and we still believe the Central Pacific is the best area to invest, enjoy, and retire to in Costa Rica.!
Member of the N.A.R. & the Costa Rican Real Estate Board CRGAR  
Toll Free: 1-888-782-1119 or  2643-4334, 2643-3672
Over 9 years in  our JACÓ Office:
IL Galeone Center by BAC, #14, Costa Rica

Costa Rica's first Realtor specialized
in eco properties, eco consulting and green living.

Eco logo
   • Specialized in the Central and South Pacific.
   • Great network of realtors, to find your dream
   • Homes, condominium & luxury homes
   • Eco lodges and Hotels
   • Green properties and waterfalls
   • Farms and developments
   • Sustainable and green living communities.
   • Property management in the Jacó area
Telephone: +506 2637-6285
cell: +506 8825-6556  

skype: ecorealtorscr  Facebook: ecorealtorscr
In front of Subway at Plaza Herradura, Jacó
Green NAR designee, member of the CCBR, CRGAR

Jim Day, representing Colinas del Sol
del Pacifico, S.A.

* Colinas del Sol is a fenced and gated project  in a quiet area.
* There are 88 clear titled lots.
* Mountain areas with great views.
* Gently sloping level areas ideal for hobby farms, gardening, fruit tree orchards.
* Quiet place to get away from the busy city and beach crowds.
* All lots have gravel roads to them, water and electricity at each.
* Lots are 5,000 sq. meters or larger, starting at only $39,000 USD , and many can be combined for those wanting a larger area for their chosen passion, be it a hobby horse farm or retirement haven.
* Located in Libertad, Guanacaste, Northwest Pacific area of Costa Rica.
* 20 minutes to the Liberia International Airport
* 15 minutes to the Pacific Beaches
* 10 minutes to Medical Facilities
* 25 minutes to the Liberia Hospital
* 5 minutes to Papagayo  Golf & Country Club
Contact Jim Day
or Phone:  001 517 484-3675.
Click Here:

Skepticism of research is frequent here

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A problem with scientific research on controversial themes is that those who do the research are suspected of being paid mouthpieces of whatever special interest group is involved.

Sometimes this is true.

Stanford University historian  Robert N. Proctor said this about cigarettes and cancer:

"Cigarette manufacturers disputed this evidence, as part of an orchestrated conspiracy to salvage cigarette sales. Propagandizing the public proved successful, judging from secret tobacco industry measurements of the impact of denialist propaganda. As late as 1960 only one-third of all U.S. doctors believed that the case against cigarettes had been established."

A.M. Costa Rica, itself, has been critical of the scientific lockstep involving reports of the impact of global warming.

Today distrust in government and institutions is widespread, and perhaps justified in some cases. North American expats in Costa Rica frequently are highly skeptical due to life experiences. No more is this true than in the case of Monsanto Co. and genetically modified plants.

There are a group of expats who react every time an article is published in A.M. Costa Rica about genetic modifications or the impact of Roundup, the company's weed killer.

The evidence shows that there has never been a single case of documented injury from Roundup and its principal ingredient, glyphosate.

Yet Monsanto remains a dirty word, to some extend based on its history with Agent Orange in Vietnam and the popular prejudice against chemistry and science.

The opponents quickly reject anything related to Monsanto, even though the company is the one institution that has the deepest interest in researching the chemicals.

Such was the case Friday when A.M. Costa Rica published the report of a breast milk study at  Washington State University. Some readers noticed that a Monsanto laboratories in St. Louis, Missouri, had done some of the work.

The study found that glyphosate, the main ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, does not accumulate in mother's breast milk. That was contrary to a disputed report by the advocacy group, Moms Across America, said the university

Michelle McGuire, an associate professor in the university's School of Biological Sciences, is the lead researcher of the study, the first to have its results independently verified by an accredited, outside organization.

Professor  McGuire is well aware of these type of controversies. "As you probably are well aware, academia-industry collaborations are so often scrutinized to a level of nastiness . . . ," she said in an email interview

She said that the sampling of mother's milk was free of cost because she and her colleagues "piggy-backed the collection of the samples and surveys on a National Science Foundation-funded project focused on better understanding microbes and carbohydrates in milk. Thus, the collection of the samples cost us nothing and wasn't funded by anyone other than (indirectly) the National Science Foundation."

She said that Monsanto's role was to develop and validate very, very sensitive and specific assays for milk and urine glyphosate and a certain nervous system chemical, As such, Monsanto internally funded that part, she added.

Monsanto also paid for the independent analyses by the Wisconsin-based Covance Laboratories, she said.

"However, please understand that we shipped the milk samples directly to Covance, and the folks at this independent laboratory communicated only with us in terms of the results," said the professor. "Thus, they provided us (not Monsanto) with the data. We also did the statistical analyses in house and did not involved Monsanto in this phase as well. The conclusions were ours alone, not Monsanto's."

fish nets
Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas photo              
Coast guardsman displays confiscated nets.

Fishermen confront coast guard over nets

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Despite a ban on fishing in the Gulf of Nicoya for environmental reasons, some 60 fishermen in 32 small boats were spotted doing just that.

The  Servicio Nacional de Guardacostas and workers from the Instituto Costarricense de Pesca y Acuicultura were surrounded by the boats and the occupants wearing ski mashes, they reported. They called the action intimidation.

The confrontation took place last week near the  Isla Chira in the gulf.

The coast guard officers managed to confiscate some 2,000 meters of  nets that had openings smaller than those specified by law.

The unidentified fishermen attempted to impede the confiscation of the nets, said the coast guard.

The case has been referred to prosecutors in Puntarenas.

While the seasonal ban is imposed in the gulf, the fishermen and their families receive subsidies from the Instituto Mixto de Ayuda Social, the coast guard noted.,

Price cuts announced for motor fuel

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Diesel users will get the biggest break in a system of rebates announced Friday by the Autoridad Reguladora de Servicios Públicos.

Each liter of diesel will be reduce 21 colons. Each liter of super gasoline will be reduced 4 colons, and each liter of plus will see a 3-colon cut, said the agency.

The cuts establish a price that is less than what normally would be the case based on the world price of petroleum and the dollar exchange rate.

State workers on the march again

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Employees of the state telecom company, the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad, are marching today to the legislature because they have two complaints.

They are unhappy with regulators who are approving the private generation of electricity and they are unhappy with what they see as attacks on their salaries.

The company known as ICE ha been among those state organization that have been subjected to news reports by newspapers and television relating to salaries that are significantly higher than the same jobs in the private sector.

The government has not yet decided what to do about that fact, although there is public and legislative pressure to take some action.

The ICE workers want to apply some of their own pressure.

Expat motorists  probably should seek to avoid the San José downtown all morning and into the early hours of the afternoon.

Have you seen these stories?
From A.M. Costa Rica

Top story news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

From our retirement guide

Retirement tips news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

In the Spanish-language press

Today, July 27

Limón port project moves along

La República: The future container terminal of Moín presents significant advances, and area residents are full of enthusiasm and hope in having a port that enhances the development of the province.

Animal cruelty law has full government support

La Prensa Libre: The president says that the status of the Parque Zoológico Simón Bolívar has to be studied calmly.

The first two days of  Cartago pilgrimage gave business to the Cruz Roja

CR Hoy: Cruz Roja nursed 168 pilgrims and made four transfers to hospitals as well. The cases were not  severe.

Lawmakers seek to reduced the long meetings

CR Hoy: Time for individual speeches in the legislature is being reduced to a half hour from a full hour. In addition, the time to file motions is being reduced from four to two days.

Some doctors are not well prepared

La República: The Academia Nacional de Medicina organized a forum where the education of future physicians was discussed.

— Compiled by Sylvia Quesada Hidalgo


Del Rey updated ad

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes R­o Colorado S.A 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page

Don't miss our restaurant specials HERE!
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, July 27, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 146
Real Estate
About us

The color guard of the Cuerpo de Bomberos, the nation's fire fighters, renders a salute at the start of festivities Sunday.

The event was the 150th birthday of the organization.

Officials and the public filled the Teatro Nacional for a ceremony. Later there was an 800-kilo (1,760-pound) birthday cake that included the image of the 1910 fire truck. The real one was parked nearby outside the theater.

Cuerpo de Bomberos photo

Government agencies told to certify their carbon neutrality status
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A mandate that government agencies must obtain certification of carbon neutrality was one of the actions the central government took in Nicoya Saturday.

Casa Presidencial said that the adverse impact of climate change is each time more obvious and tangible in the country.  While the Caribbean presents excess precipitation, the province of Guanacaste is in the worst drought in the last 78 years, it said.

Scientists attribute these problems to El Niño in the Pacific, but Luis Guillermo Solís is not the first president to see causation in the weather. Former president Laura Chinchilla attributed massive storm damage in Central America to
climate change creating hurricanes. She joined with other presidents in the region in seeking compensation from First World countries.
The earth's average temperature has increased 1.4 degrees F or 0.8 degree C since 1880, according to the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration.

The decree issued Saturday defines an action plan for a climate change national strategy. Government agencies are told to immediately seek certification of their carbon emissions.

There is believed to be only one private company that can perform these carbon audits.

The president also declared July 25 to be the national day of the marimba Saturday. The decree replaced one issued in 2004 that declared the day to be the national day of the marimba musician.

The xylophone-type instrument is generally identified with Guanacaste.

New heat index rules are designed to fight workers' kidney problems
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Consejo de Seguridad Ocupacional has approved rules that cover employees who work outdoors in hot conditions. The new rules are linked to an effort to reduce the cases of kidney failure in Guanacaste, but they cover the entire country.

The new regulations were signed in Nicoya Saturday by President Luis Guillermo Solís and the minsters of Trabajo and Salud, Víctor Morales Mora and Fernando Llorca Castro.

The regulations create an index based on temperature, wind velocity, physical activity and the type of clothing workers wear.

The  Caja Costarricense del Seguro Social conducted a study of kidney failure in 2014.

Since it was first identified that high rates of kidney failure exist in the young, male, working populations along the Pacific coast of Central America, many theories have surfaced 
as to the root of the problem. Although prolonged dehydration is agreed upon in the scientific community as a likely candidate, many others have been proposed.
Some of the others include: exposure to pesticides from the sugar cane work many of the afflicted participate in, consumption of a homemade liquor that is popular in the rural regions where the problem is most prevalent and chronic consumption of pain medications possibly linked to the aches and pains of a manual labor workforce. Genetics could also play a part, but researchers seem to agree that environmental factors are most likely to blame.

The Caja agrees that dehydration is a problem.

The thermal index is determined by a formula that is spelled out in an appendix to the regulations.

There are five stages of increasing impact of the heat. Employers can provide remedies ranging from hydration to rest to shade for the workers.

Regional ministry offices will be providing additional information, mainly in areas where the sun's heat will crete conditions that generate a high thermal index. Employers are encouraged to send workers for a renal checkup at Caja clinics.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

Del Rey updated ad

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

Fish Fabulous Costa Rica
Key Largo
A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Monday, July 27, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 146
Real Estate
About us

Portable computer system gives needed protection to activists, reporters
By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Chris Doten knows how hazardous it can be for democracy activists and journalists working under hostile regimes.

As manager for digital technology programs at the National Democratic Institute, the nonpartisan non-profit supporting transparency and openness in government, Doten’s job is to help journalists and pro-democracy advocates protect their privacy from government snoops while online.

“We do work in relatively closed societies,” Doten said. “There are a lot of dangers, and we always try to take a thoughtful look at the risks that we’re incurring for the people we’re working with.”

Those risks often include government raids, computer seizure, data theft through malware, and the exposure of sources, supporters and private email communications. Such breaches can lead to arrest, expulsion or worse.

But Doten said there’s a digital solution that’s helping growing numbers journalists and others around the world safeguard their online activities.

It’s called TAILS, and it gives even the most technologically challenged individuals the ability to shield their Internet communications and activity from just about any government in the world.

TAILS is an acronym that stands for The Amnesic Incognito Live System.

In computer jargon, a live system is a stand-alone operating system that runs directly off a DVD or, increasingly, a USB memory stick.

Because a live system runs solely on a computer’s RAM, none of the operating system files are saved anywhere. Once downloaded to a USB, users just plug it in to any computer and run it.

When ejected, the TAILS live system leaves no trace of its existence as the computer has literally zero memory of TAILS ever having been used.

TAILS also uses the Tor anonymizing network for all connections to the Internet, thus incognito.

A developer, who requested to remain unnamed for security reasons, said that the goal was to create a tool that “combined very good security by default while being accessible to a large public.”

Early on, TAILS developers realized that neither a live system nor Tor by itself was enough to fully hide user identities and online activities. However, when they were combined together, the developer said, they created a formidable shield.

“All kind of identifying information can be leaked, even through Tor, like the fingerprint of your browser, the name of your machine or user, or metadata from your documents,” the developer said. “Live systems … leave no trace on the computer.

“While Tor can protect you from an attacker on the network, it doesn't protect you from an attacker who can access your computer and analyze its content, such as a repressive government, your boss or someone harassing you at home,” the developer said.

“As live systems run only from RAM, when you shut them down, any trace of your activity disappears automatically from the computer," the developer added.

Both Doten and the developer point out that while TAILS 
provides fairly good privacy by itself, it also comes with a
 suite of additional security apps that users can easily access.

“TAILS enables a lot of encryption – such as end-to-end encryption through PGP right out of the box – but that’s not automatic,” Doten said.

“There’s also a multi-protocol chat client that can speak to Facebook, Google Chat, and others called Pidgin. So people can use TAILS, and then add on PGP or Pidgin with people using counterpart tools on the other end of the conversation," he added.

These and other tools, such as GnuPG for encrypting email, the Electrum Bitcoin wallet, and KeePassX for storing strong passwords, allow users to custom-tailor their own levels of privacy protection and anonymization.

“TAILS ends up providing your operating system; what happens after that is up to you,” Doten said.

TAILS isn’t new. The first versions were launched a little more than five years ago.

And because Tails is free and mostly used by individuals who want to remain anonymous, the developer said that it’s hard to know for sure exactly who, or how many, are using the system.

What is known is that a growing number of journalists and advocacy organizations, such as the Doten's, are publicly championing the use of TAILS.

“I’m pretty sure of the 100 or so people I’ve trained on PGP that a grand total of zero are using it regularly,” Doten said. “TAILS is much easier and more straightforward for most people.

"Our partners think of TAILS like their work environment: it lets you do what you need to do for your job," he added.

Reporters Without Borders, the nonprofit supporting freedom of the press, also recommends TAILS for journalists who need to protect their sources.

Tibetan activists are using TAILS to securely document human-rights abuses there by the Chinese government. And groups working to fight domestic abuse, such as Transition House and Emerge, are now using TAILS to report abuse and shield victims' identities.

“I especially make sure to keep it with me when traveling,” said Karachi-based investigative journalist Fahad Desmukh. “Pakistan really isn't the safest place for journalists.”

Perhaps the highest-profile endorsement for TAILS came in 2013, when former NSA contractor Edward Snowden insisted on its use by journalists Glenn Greenwald and Laura Poitras before he would reveal any of the documents about undisclosed NSA surveillance programs he had collected.

As with any other encryption or anonymizing application, Tails can be used for ill as well as good.

The same robust protections that help protect human-rights activists can be used by hackers, criminal gangs or even terrorists to hide their identity and activity online.

While acknowledging that possibility, Doten said the real worry should be how often cyberactivists, journalists and others working to expand democracy are targeted online and then punished for their activities.

“I’m frankly shocked at the state of digital security among U.S. journalists; people who have real dangers that they’ve seen externally and internally at times,” he said.

“The fact that newsrooms around the country, even the big ones, are not investing more in this I think is a real crime," Doten said.

Vacation, travel and hospitality

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.


Osas montage
Adventures in Costa Rica are awaiting you.
Each of the five individual Villas  boasts its own unique charm with pleasant, moderately priced accommodations and all gives you the opportunity of taking in the sights and sounds of the jungle from your own private balcony which has views of the river bed and the ocean. If you’re up for an adventure  we can help you arrange it and choose from the many tour options available in our region. Ojochal has some of the most secluded and pristine beaches in all of Costa Rica, as well as some outstanding surfing opportunities. Enjoy our local attractions such as white water rafting, whale and dolphins tour, Corcovado national park tours, Osa canopy tour, San Buenas golf course, horseback ride to the beach and waterfalls,
Osa field institute and much more.
Contact us Now for reservations at: or  Or phone 506-2786-5170
Visit our Web page for more info:
Like us on Facebook.

Mar de
Hotel Mar de Luz
Designed for families to provide peaceful & ecologically balanced environment, where all can enjoy healthy & pollution free stay. Built in harmony with nature & were used to reflect a subtropical atmosphere. Main source of energy is sunlight, converted by solar panels on the roofs. High quality services at a reasonable cost allowing guests to enjoy dream holiday at an attractive rate. Come and enjoy a great vacation. Comfortable accommodation, personalized services and quality amenities. Cosy rooms, breakfast, pools, architectural design, surrounded by lush vegetation in beautiful tropical gardens with coconut, almond, etc. Address : Jacó  beach, next to Subway Restaurant, Avenida Pastor Díaz, Costa Rica. Local phone (506) 2643-3000. Email:  Web page:

                        Playa Bejuco
Hotel Boutique Playa Bejuco
Cozy, opened in 2007 just 90 minutes from the capital, with good access. Go shopping or enjoy the evening entertainment. Hosting services, friendly, quality and comfortable, discreet under the concept of 100 percent family hotel, the reason we do not allow or endorse any activity related to prostitution or drugs. Natural beauty, recommended for tourists for a relaxing holiday. Nearby is Manuel Antonio National Park. Tours, canopy, fishing, rainforest, horseback riding, ATV, rafting, etc. 20 deluxe rooms equipped with 3 for disabled. All with air conditioning, cable TV, telephone, refrigerator, private bathroom, hot water, free wireless Internet, etc. Maximum 5 people. Main restaurant, pools (adults & children), jacuzzi, private parking, 24 hours security, pool bar, playground equipped. At front desk currency conversions, confirm your flight or coordinate tours. Address : Playa Bejuco, Esterillos, Costa Rica. Local phone (506) : 2779-2000. Email:   Web page

experience Costa Rica
Costa Rica Travel In Paradise Group Tours

Looking for easy booking process for a smooth Costa Rica trip?   We customize wonderful trips to Costa Rica.  We offer you our wealth of knowledge for a great experience . . . a trip of a lifetime!!!

* FAMILY VACATIONS. Our travels take into account the different ages of your family enjoy the most from your Family vacations. Click HERE!

* GROUP TOURS. Whether for a church group, couple of friends, Scout troop or a family group. We provide excellent quality service in your Group Tours. Click HERE!

* EDUCATIONAL TOURS. Tours for universities to schools to elementary schools. We have professionals to help you discover the secrets of Costa Rica in a fun way. Costa Rica Educational Tours. Click HERE!

* GUIDED TOURS. General holiday planning giving you the best value for your investment Costa Rica vacation Packages. Click HERE!

Contact Us:
International Phone: 1-800-9010-114
CR Local Phone: 011-506 -2274-3231

  Get Help Planning Your Adventure Vacation in Costa Rica.
  100% Personalized Vacation Planning Service.
Click HERE!

Howard book
Want to live in Costa Rica?
Read this book!

1,000s have benefited from 17 editions
with its insider information
and time-tested tips
700 carefully researched pages  

Written by Christopher Howard,
Costa Rica's #1 retirement expert
with 35 years experience helping people.
Click HERE!

Will Costa Rica Retirement Work For You?
Find out for yourself on Live In Costa Rica Tours

When you visit Costa Rica, you'll want to discover what you need to know to  make the right choice about moving to this tropical paradise.  Our familiarization tours have won hard-earned credentials that prove general excellence and the right focus.  These are the only retirement tours that are licensed and approved by the Costa Rican government and tourism institute  (ICT). In 2006 we were featured on the NBC Today Show and World News.  In 2010, we won the  prestigious Latin America-Asia Travel Excellence Award for the Best and Most Unique Tour in Latin America.

   * Discover how to make the right choices about moving here
   * Find out how to live affordably
   * See how other expats live. Meet other expats who have made
          the move.
   * Access the country's affordable health care system
   * Informative two-day seminar given by local experts in their
          relevant fields.
   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 34-year resident, citizen,
          and the author of "The New Golden Door to Retirement
          and  Living in Costa Rica – the Official Guide to Relocation”
Click HERE  to learn all about our Association of Residents (ARCR)  approved tours at

Largest art gallery in Guanacaste
Drop in to see some of Costa Rica's finest art
at the largest gallery in Guanacaste.

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
or contact us by email:   
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.

Here's reasonable medical care
Costa Rica's world class medical specialists are at your command. Get the top care for much less than U.S. prices. It is really a great way to spend a vacation. See our list of recommended professionals HERE!amcr-prom

Need a book about Costa Rica?

Check out our special selections available at Amazon logo


A.M. Costa Rica
Real estate rentals
Real estate rental agents
Real estate for rent
Real estate wanted

Real estate rental services (paid category)

The vacation homes at Manuel Antonio Estates offers luxury, comfort and peace of mind. We have numerous homes from 2 bedrooms to 8 bedrooms ocean view with private pool,  all within walking distance of the town’s shops and restaurants and just a few minutes to the best beaches and the famous Manuel Antonio national park. While the homes are secluded and hidden among the rainforest, the surrounding area offers adventures like zip lines, whitewater rafting, mangrove kayaking and many more. All of the homes are available for short-term rentals, Fully equipped, Pool, concierge,  parking, cable TV, and Internet. We are happy to assist with all your need for the perfect Costa Rican vacation, Call us for your family vacation package.
TOLL FREE: 1800 346=9724 or (506) 2777-3339

Real estate for rent (paid category)

Playa del Coco
Hear the waves and walk to the beach
Villa with separate studio apartment in north Playas del Coco. Two bedrooms and two baths in the villa. Fully furnished.  Laundry facilities. Yard fenced in. Pets Ok. Large covered terrace with views. A/C, satellite TV. Surrounded by gardens, palms and other tropical trees frequented by monkeys. Rent villa for $1,300/month or both for $1,500. Contact owner Linda: 2670-0779 or 8347-4705.

2-bedroom, 2-bathroom, fully furnished American-style apartments with elevator in a secure building in Barrio Amón. Cable, Internet, 
apartment view
water  included.  Shared laundry.  Convenient to Parque Morazán, hotels, restaurants, casinos, city government, National Registry.  $600 per month plus electric.  $300 security.  No lease. For photos and more information contact: 

montage of thre homes
Beautiful Cottages for rent
Cottages located in the mountains of Los Angeles, San Rafael, Heredia. Surrounded by trees and nature, beautiful gardens. 45 minutes from San José. Bus line service, security. Pets allowed.
    - 3 bedrooms, 2 bathrooms, 2 balcony, 1 ranch. $900 monthly
          + utilities.
    - 2 bedrooms, 1 bathroom. $450 monthly + utilities.
    - 1 bedroom, 1 and 1/2 bathroom, 1 balcony. $500 monthly
         + utilities.
Phone: (506) 8739-0638, (506) 7019-9457, (506) 8993-5801

Beautiful 2-bedroom 2-bathroom American-style apartments with an elevator to your front door in a secure building located in Gringo Gulch, the American section of downtown San José. Costa Rica.
apartment view
Located between the Hotel Del Rey, the Hotel Mona Lisa and the Sportsman's Lodge and The Zona Blue (AKA) Little Habana across the street from Harry's Poas Bar, and next to the Holiday Inn. There are 15 restaurants and American- style bars on this block and four supermarkets within a few
blocks. There are 5 casinos within 2 blocks and dozens of hotels around this apartment. Included in your rental price: fast Internet, the best they have in Costa Rica, cable TV with 80 stations, water, washer and dryer. All you pay extra for is electricity. You have your own meter and receive a bill from the electric company every month.  This apartment has a American-style hot water system, hot water in both bathrooms and the kitchen. There is a 25-foot balcony to sit on and watch the people in San José walk by. The neighborhood Barrio Amón is the safest in San José For photos and more information contact:   Call us: 506-2221-7161. 

Beautiful cottage in San Rafael, Heredia

 Surrounded by nature.
One or two bedrooms, 1 or 1.5 bathrooms. Bus line service, security. Pets allowed. $450 and $500 monthly. Phone: (506) 7019-9457,  8739-0638, 8993-5801. Or

Heredia cottage

house for rent
$800 plus electric
Two-bedrooms, two-bath house, fully furnished, INCLUDES internet, WiFi, cable TV, water bill. Inside private property, safe and secure. In the country but close to town. Santa Bárbara de Heredia. Email for more info and pictures. Long term. NO DOGS.

Furnished apartment for rent  Available Now!
Impeccable newly remodeled villa in Villas de Cariari for rent day, week or month. Rates from US$85 per day. Utilities, washer and dryer, car parking,  24 hour security, Wi-Fi, close to airport and shopping. Long=term and corporate renters are accepted.
Contact: Chris English/Spanish U.S. phone: 1-804-699-8073
Costa Rica phone : (506) 6145-7003 Email:

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 baths, appliances included. High-speed internet installed, Direct TV via sling box on Internet.  Rent per month $750 plus utilities with free internet.  Price for Sale $179,000   Contact Mike:  Check out slide show HERE!

Tropical Homes of Costa Rica is offering the best selection of vacation homes, condos and long-term rental homes in Playa Flamingo, Playa Potrero and Playa Brasilito on  the Pacific Gold Coast of Guanacaste. A wide selection of private residencies is providing an excellent choice for your stay in this beautiful part of Costa Rica.
We are offering homes for every budget and every need.
Please visit our Web page at or contact us at
or call at (506) 2654-5442.

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica's   Fifth news page
Builder special

San José, Costa Rica, Monday, July 27, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 146
Real Estate
About us

Saving key digital knowledge
is theme of  'Jonesbridge'

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Two hundred years into the future, descendants of a humanity struck by an unknown catastrophe
scavenge for scraps of knowledge that could hold the key to restoring their ancestors’ lost digital past.

This is the story of "Jonesbridge: Echoes of Hinterland," the first in a fictional trilogy that offers a “portrait of a society or a world that
had to start with much fewer people and much less knowledge – sort of like picking a chunk of their history,” Author M.E. Parker told TECHtonics.

Survivors find much information to help them burn coal for electricity, for example. But the amount of lost digital knowledge, particularly the more sophisticated or closely-guarded proprietary technology, sets them back to a dark age.

Whatever information they find on crumbling, obsolete hardware or software leftovers is inaccessible or possibly alien to them, making it more of a challenge to reassemble the digital puzzles of the past.

“A language, for example, like the Rosetta Stone – we were able to kind of piece together you know, Greek, Egyptian and in-between, based on the Rosetta Stone and some of the linguistic abilities that we had,” said Parker, “But without the software and technology aspect of it, we wouldn’t be able to do that with technology.”

But he acknowledged that it is unlikely that humanity might one day come to face such an event.

“The incredible amount of redundancy that we do have in our online infrastructure currently makes it unlikely that there would be a civilization-altering loss of data, unless … of course for a catastrophic, you know – nuclear war, solar event even that kills a large part of the population with it,” he said. So in that case, it’s sort of a perfect storm.”

It is a speculative scenario. But in the unlikely event that a global catastrophe disrupts humanity’s ability to produce and maintain technology and technological infrastructure for more than 150 years, “much or most information that is now available only in digital form will likely be lost,” said Micah Altman, director of research and head/scientist, Program on Information Science for the MIT Libraries, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

There are several reasons that would account for this loss. One of them is the life span of digital storage media.

“Most media used for digital storage are intended for storage for approximately a five-year period,” he said in an email interview. “The information on this media would be unrecoverable after 100 years, even in ideal conditions.”

While some specialized archival digital media are theoretically designed for 100-year storage under controlled conditions, he said “150 years exceeds the expected lifetime of most of these archival digital materials; and the storage conditions induced by a catastrophe would induce rapid degradation.”

Ironically, some analog information might survive. That could include “books and journals printed on acid-free paper, information preserved on Rosetta disks, nickel disks designed for 10,000-year storage, as long as the storage conditions were conducive.”

Even if some of the recovered archives are intact, hardware availability or lack of would present another challenge. So a surviving optical disk, even if intact, would require specialized hardware to read it.

An ordinary DVD, for example, requires lasers, VLSI or Very Large Scale Integration, the process of creating an integrated circuit by combining thousands of transistors into a single chip, and precisely engineered motors, a sophisticated technology that generally requires considerable supporting infrastructure to manufacture,” Altman explained.

Then there is the issue of digital obsolescence. Digital information formats, said Altman, are complex, not human-readable or self-documenting.

“Without documentation of the formats, software to implement them, and computers to execute the software, the bits retrieved … would be uninterpretable,” he explained.

So if humanity’s technology infrastructure disappears for a 100 years, he said “a whole lot of scientific knowledge, culture, and historical/government record disappears.”

But digital information is easy to replicate, he noted, meaning that a country that escapes the catastrophe and “manages to maintain technical manufacturing infrastructure at small scale” can potentially save “much of the publicly available information.”

The recovery of lost digital knowledge would depend on who survives, what they know,  where they are, and on the scale of the catastrophe. But "Jonesbridge" is “more a story of humanity … understanding that it … has a capacity to overcome more than it has a capacity to avoid calamity,” said Parker.

He suggested that there might be a way to create a repository to protect accumulated digital knowledge similar to an underground seed vault in Norway that houses millions of species of seeds for crops, trees and plants.

“It would be possible to create some sort of technology vault … that could maintain at least a road map of how to retrieve information from certain basic systems,” he said. “The problem that we face is that the encryption and decryption technology and compression technology are in many cases proprietary to whoever makes it, and they’re protective of it.”

Mrs. Clinton denies using
her server for classified data

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton said Saturday that she never used her personal email account to receive or send classified information as secretary of State.

"I am confident that I never sent nor received any information that was classified at the time it was sent and received," Mrs. Clinton said during a campaign appearance in Iowa, the north-central U.S. state that will hold the first caucuses of the 2016 campaign.

The email controversy has dogged Clinton's bid for the presidency, fueling worries that the front-runner for the Democratic nomination has tried to sidestep transparency and record-keeping laws.

An Iowa Republican Party official said voters do not trust Mrs. Clinton. He accused her of being less than truthful about what he called her "cavalier handling of sensitive information."

The U.S. Justice Department is considering an investigation into a possible compromise of sensitive information in Mrs. Clinton's emails but said it would not be a criminal probe.

In a letter to Congress, two federal inspectors general wrote that a review of a limited sampling of Mrs. Clinton's emails found at least four contained classified information that should not have appeared in a private email.

Mrs. Clinton said Saturday that she had no idea what was in the emails mentioned in the letter.

State Department spokesman Mark Toner said some of the emails did not need to be classified at the time they were sent, but have since been re-examined and upgraded as classified.

Mrs. Clinton has authorized the State Department to make 55,000 pages of emails in her private account public.

She denies doing anything wrong and has said it was more convenient to use one email account and one device when she was secretary of State.

"Looking back, it would have been better if I had simply used a second email account and carried a second phone," Mrs. Clinton said in March. "But at the time, it didn't seem like an issue."

Mrs. Critics have accused her of trying to hide controversial communications in her private account, including those surrounding the deadly terrorist attack on the U.S. Consulate in Benghazi, Libya, in 2012.

Officials with the Clinton campaign are negotiating with congressional Republicans on terms of her possible testimony before a House committee investigating Benghazi.

Colombia's Santos orders
halt to bombing of rebels

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Colombia's president ordered a halt Saturday to air raids on the rebel Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia.

"This will mean fewer deaths, less suffering and fewer victims," Juan Manuel Santos said.

The rebels initiated a cease-fire last Monday.

Colombia and the Marxist-inspired rebels are engaged in peace talks in Havana after a more than 50-year internal armed conflict.  Latin America's oldest insurgency has killed more than 200,000 people and displaced millions.

In March, Colombia suspended bombings against the rebels but resumed them after the rebels broke the ceasefire in April, killing 10 soldiers.

Judge says U.S. violated
detention pact for children

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A federal judge in Los Angeles has ruled that the Obama administration's detention of illegal immigrant children and their mothers violates an 18-year-old court settlement.

In a ruling that upheld a tentative decision she issued in April, U.S. District Judge Dolly Gee ordered the Department of Homeland Security to free the families from three holding facilities as soon as possible.

In her ruling, handed down late Friday, Judge Gee wrote that the children and their mothers were being held in widespread deplorable conditions and that authorities had failed to place the youngsters in safe and sanitary facilities, as required by the 1997 settlement.

Judge Gee strongly criticized the government for not complying with what she said are the unambiguous terms of the 1997 settlement, and ruled that the settlement applies to both unaccompanied children and those who arrived with their mothers.

The judge has given Homeland Security until Aug. 3 to come up a with a plan for the detainees. She also gave the Justice Department 90 days to show cause why it should not have to abide by her ruling.

A Homeland Security spokeswoman said the department was disappointed. The Justice Department has not yet responded.

Under the 1997 court settlement, immigrant children who arrive in the U.S. illegally and without a parent must be held in a place that looks like and is operated like a licensed, clean and comfortable child-care center.

Immigrant-rights lawyers sued the government, arguing that two immigrant detention facilities in Texas and one in Pennsylvania were secured like prisons. All three are operated by private companies under contract to the federal government. Together, they have recently held more than 2,000 women and children. Those people were among tens of thousands of people who had come to the United States from Central America, most of them mothers with children. Many claimed they were fleeing gang and domestic violence back home.

The legal action contends that mothers held in the detention facilities are sick and depressed, and that their children also are becoming depressed.

Peter Schey, one of the attorneys who brought the suit, said federal officials "know they’re in violation of the law."

"They are holding children in unsafe facilities. It's that simple,'' said Schey, executive director of the Los Angeles-based Center for Human Rights and Constitutional Law, in an email. "It's intolerable, it's inhumane, and it needs to end, and end sooner rather than later.''

Judge Gee rejected the Justice Department's contention that it had to alter terms of the 1997 settlement to deter the massive wave of illegal immigrant children from Central America who poured across the U.S. border last year.

Pacific Partnership talks
are coming to the final wire

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Talks on the complex and controversial Trans Pacific Partnership are said to be nearing completion as top negotiators from 12 nations gathered Friday in Hawaii. Trade ministers will join the talks Tuesday in an effort to resolve remaining issues.

If completed, the treaty would cut tariffs and trade barriers among participants, something supporters say would boost economic growth.

The nations involved are Japan, Brunei, Malaysia, Vietnam, Singapore, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Mexico, Chile, Peru, and the United States, which together make up about 40 percent of the global economy. 

In the United States, critics of the treaty include environmentalists, and unions who say the deal would do too little to protect human rights, the environment and U.S. jobs.

Richard Trumka, President of the AFL-CIO union said the treaty "is full of stuff that is bad for working people, bad for the environment, bad for food safety." 

Previous trade deals cut tariffs on imports with the idea that making trade cheaper would spark more exchanges and boost economic growth.

This new deal cuts conflicting rules and laws that make it difficult for goods from one nation to be sold in another.

U.S. critics say harmonizing labor standards and environmental laws might weaken hard-won worker protections in the United States or other nations.  Unions worry that weak labor rights protections in some U.S. trading partners would keep production costs low and encourage companies to move more jobs out of the United States to low-wage nations.

An expert in Asian economic issues, Charles Morrison, said the treaty is a very complicated negotiation and the outcome is far from certain. But Morrison, who is president of the East-West Center in Hawaii, said there is a lot of political will on the part of many nations pushing for a deal. 

In an interview, Morrison cautioned that even if a deal is made by negotiators, each nation will still put it through an approval process, including the Senate in the United States.

He said the results of negotiated give and take are likely to disappoint some business groups, environmental activists or others who wish officials had driven a harder bargain. He said without some give, however, there will be no take in any negotiation.

Morrison said failing to make a deal would deny consumers in many countries the benefits of lower cost, more efficient trade. He said many of these nations already do considerable trading, and some have bilateral trade agreements, so reaching a deal may not mean huge changes.

News accounts say many issues remain to be worked out, including disputes between Washington and Tokyo over auto parts and rice imports, and other squabbles over access to Canadian markets for agriculture products from other nations.

Trade ministers are scheduled to hold a concluding press conference Friday to announce the results of what is likely to be a week of hard bargaining behind closed doors. 

Brain differences discovered
in low-income youngsters

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

It’s well-known that children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds tend to lag behind their better-off peers in academic readiness and school performance.

Now, investigators may be homing in on a biological reason for that difference.

Researchers linked to the University of Wisconsin-Madison found that children and adolescents who tested lower on standardized tests had a lower volume of gray matter in their brains than the norm, and their frontal and temporal lobes developed more slowly.

Those are two critical brain areas, said Barbara Wolfe, an economics professor who co-authored the study published this week in the journal JAMA Pediatrics.

The brain areas are "critical in the sense that they keep developing until individuals are well into their adolescence or early 20s, and critical in the sense that they are important for executive function," Ms. Wolfe said. "They are important for cognitive function."

Researchers looked at magnetic resonance images of the brains of nearly 400 children and young adults, ages 4 to 22, matching the scans with the participants' scores on cognitive and academic achievement tests and their socioeconomic status.

In general, participants who were low on the economic scale tended to score between three and four points below what is expected for their age on standardized tests.

Those who were significantly below the poverty line had a gap of between eight and 10 points below the developmental norm.

Ms. Wolfe said factors in poorer students’ brain structure and lower test scores could include inadequate nutrition or stimulation, or "stress that parents face in trying to deal with poverty, putting food on the table."

The authors concluded that up to 20 percent of the low-income children’s achievement deficits could be tied to poverty.

Ms. Wolfe suggested early intervention may improve poor children’s brain development and, subsequently, their test scores and academic achievement. Once the source of the deficit is identified, "these areas of the brain can be developed," she said. ". . . It means that policies can be developed that overcome this deficit."

At the same time, Ms. Wolfe said improved test scores might be a way to measure the effectiveness of programs designed to boost lower-income children’s academic achievement.

Coldwell Banker

Real estate-related services (paid category)

Solar device

Hot water is 40% of your average electric bill.  While MINAE and the PROCURADURIA debate over Solar Electric, you can begin saving now!  $1,895 installed.  Call for details.

200 liter EZINC Quality Pressurized Thermo-Siphon Solar Hot Water System Designed for the European Market. 

Install EZINC Today... Spend less tomorrow on Solar Electric!

2446-0543           8898-9398                8314-8090

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo
Photo montage of penthouse
Are you  tired of wasting time searching your home….. with no results?
If so, you should not miss this deal !!!

Special Offer

Penthouse condominium in Playa Langosta, Tamarindo

* Located on 6th floor.
* Elevator.
* Security 24/7.
* Pool, BBQ area.
* 2 underground
        parking,  cellar.

* 3 bedrooms.
* 2 bathrooms.
* 2 terraces.
* Luxuriously
* Negotiable price.

* Enjoy the view,  CLICK HERE
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
Cel. +506 8399-7000
Web Page:

Costa Rica,

Central America
Houses, lots and farms in Grecia,
western Central Valley.
Great climate
and safe communities.

Visit our Web Site:

English calls: (Cristian Arce) Phone: 
(506) 2494-0016 
(506) 8309-0173
English calls :  (Luis David) Phone: 
(506) 6154-1940 

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Grecia one
Big house for sale.
Great opportunity !!!

If you know about house for sale prices,  you will realize that this is a real deal.  Original price of  $400,000 now is $320,000.
Due to its characteristics and location, it can also be used for commercial purposes (boutique hotel, offices, medical center).  Large house, 5 bedrooms, 3 bathrooms, one office, just 250 meters from Grecia downtown. High quality construction, built in 2009, high ceilings, balcony with beautiful views over central Grecia valley, elegant luxury furnitures included, network cabling 6 gigabits throughout the house, Giant TV flat projection system of 120 inches in the main room, sound system 7.1 channel. Air conditioning system, security system, and cameras, lighting system in open areas. 4-car parking space plus large garage, Recommended for large families.

Property Location: Central Grecia, Alajuela
Total area construction (two floors):
252 square meters
Total area: 250 square meters
Construction Type: Concrete
See more photos click HERE!

Grecias two
  Send us your request to our email:

Swimming pool at night
A Buyer’s Broker offering the best
of Costa Rica Real Estate.
For those looking for quality properties and service at quality prices. Central Valley Rentals. Offering honesty, experience and knowledge. Your Villa Real Expert. Call us now  Toll Free (877) 845-4533. In Costa Rica 4030-5480 or 8339-2112.

Remax logo
Re/Max Ocean Surf and Sun:

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 Costa 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)

San Rafael
Charming land for sale
Located in  in the mountains of Los Angeles, San Rafael, Heredia. Surrounded by trees and nature, beautiful gardens, and a small river.
Bus line service, security, 45 minutes from San José. Land with 3 houses (cottage type). The lot measures around 6.000 M2.
Sale by the owners, Offered at $750,000 USD. 
Phone: (506) 8739-0638, (506) 7019-9457, (506) 8993-5801,

Ringle resort
on one big lot in Esterillos Oeste, (Central Pacific)
Located on a breezy hill just 4 minutes walk to the beach, surf and tide-pools, only 20 minutes drive north to Jacó nightlife and shopping or south to the rural town of Parrita.

First, a 2-storey, 2-bedroom (sleeps 4), 1½-bathroom house with big kitchen and living room.  Full-width verandah with eating and sitting areas, overlooking lawn, pool and gazebo. Sitting balcony at upper, bedroom level.  Carport. and laundry. 

Second, a completely private single-storey. 2-bedroom (sleeps 4), 1-bathroom home with big back yard at a lower level on the same, big fully titled 1,100M2 lot.. Full security bars at all doors and windows, plus locking vehicle access and pedestrian gates at the street. In a very safe neighborhood, with private and natural surroundings

Well maintained, fully and tastefully furnished and equipped, hot water, local phone, cable TV/DVD and high speed wireless internet   The houses have been rented for both long-term and vacation for $100/$80 per day and $1,500/$1,200 per month respectively. See this place, you will love it! Then make an offer. E-mail or call (506) 8386-8825.  Rodney, asking $350,000.

Coffee farm
Organic coffee farm for sale
34,000 meters square zoned ARC. 130 meters paved road frontage. City water and irrigation runes through property. Year round spring. Bananas and many fruit trees on property. Approx. 1.5K from Sarchí Center, 40K from airport. Plans and permits ready for 2-bedroom house. Proposed subdivision plans are also included. @$15US per meter for total $510,000. Email or

Highway Restaurant & Bar
Golfito, Costa Rica’s paradise. About 5 acre, choice property on the highway. Ideal to build a drive-in restaurant and home. Asking Only $65,000.00 Agents inquiries welcome. Call Jens: 2775-0225 or

San Ramon
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!

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 $1,250,000. USD
or call (506) 8707-1037  (506) 2778-8408

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 $239,000.  Call  Jeff: 8824-8113 or 8725-8176.  Email:

Aerial Ocean and Volcano Views with Boutique Coffee! 33 Acres $725,000. Click HERE!

San Ramon rollover
Three-bedroom home with view near San Ramón
Beautiful house in magical setting in the hills above San Ramón in Costa Rica can be yours for $179,500! House was built 10 years ago with soaring 16-foot ceilings.  Enclosed area is 1,200 square feet with 3 bedrooms and 2 full bathrooms, large kitchen, and utility room.  It is located at 4,000 feet with typical temperatures ranging between 75 and the low 80s during the day and the low to mid-60s at night.  The house is offered fully furnished, including all appliances (nearly new energy-efficient Samsung refrigerator). The front of the house features a large covered veranda (another 500 square feet), with a barbecue and outdoor patio furniture to seat 8, and hooks for a hammock. There are many tropical plants, flowers, and trees are on the half-acre property.  Set on the far western edge of the Central Valley in a small, pastoral community, it's only 10 minutes to San Ramón and its many small stores, restaurants, museums, a branch campus of the University of Costa Rica, and a weekly farmers' market.
See additional pictures at
Phone: (506) 7009-0364

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

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 $889,000.
E-mail:  or call (506) 8707-1037 
(506) 2778-8408 Web:

For sale: Titled beachfront lot 1/2 acre (1,750m2) near Jacó $89,000. Just one hour drive from San José.
Panoramic ocean view lot 1.25 acres (5,000m2) 25 minutes from Tamarindo  $25,000.
Panoramic ocean view lot  5,400 sq. ft. (500m2)  $6,500. Financing available.
For rent two-bedroom house  five minute walk to water $350 a month.
Call 6261-7932 Or email See this Web site:

Shangra la
Located in Jacó in the best and safest location possible, at Barrio Ricos y Famosos in Calle Europa, Casa Shangri La.

Main house: 3 bedrooms, 3 baths, 270 square meters, 2 condominiums 2 bedrooms, one bath, 110 square meters, plus one small apartment: One bedroom, one bath. Huge pool, carport for five cars. plus double garage, rancho with pool bathroom, gymnasium, laundry room, pool plumbing room, huge dog house in separate 500-square-meter garden with aviary for birds and other animals. 60 meters of river front of Río Copey with a 4-meter-high protective and retention stone wall. Eight surveillance camera CCTV system with Internet access from anywhere. Over 2-meter-high brick wall all around the property with two layers of razor wires on top, the safest place to be! Electronic entrance gate, door phone, Beautiful gardens with many fruit trees. Built in year 2005 to highest standard by German owner now 69 years old, who wants to downgrade. Room for two more apartments, plans approved. Only 6 minutes walk to the beach and or center of Jacó.  Price reduced for quick sale to $1,150.000 and still negotiable. All fittings and furniture included. Excellent quality and well maintained. Just upgraded and remodeled for $ 30,000. Owner financing available.  More photos on request HERE! Email:  Cell 8838-2081 or home 2643-2979.

ARenal property
Location: Near Arenal        Price: $2.7 million
Size: 113 acres
Web site:

The farm is at the highest point on a stunning ridge bordered by pristine Costa Rican primary forest on all sides of the property, with active wildlife all throughout the area. On each of its gently rolling terraced lomas you get a glimpse of Volcán Arenal from a distance. This property has four different lagunas, a working organic farm and nursery, mature fruit trees, sheep corral, ideal for grazing horses with stunning views from all the hillsides. The Northern Zone of Costa Rica is the country's best kept secret, providing a perfect home base location to travel the country's many destinations while still maintaining the best climate at 400 meters above sea level.

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)
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:

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Some of our other titles:
A.M. Panama
A.M. Colombia
A.M. Guatemala
A.M. Honduras
A.M. Cuba
A.M. Nicaragua
A.M. Venezuela
A.M. Central America
Dominican Republic

A.M. Ecuador A.M. El Salvador
A.M. Bolivia

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Monday, July 27, 2015, Vol. 15, No. 146
Real Estate
About us

News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
How to really get stuck on gardening

What good are thorns?  Okay, we know why they are on raspberries and blackberries and such, it’s to keep things from eating all the berries
Victoria torley
before they can ripen and make new plants. Even asking the question about those berries is kind of silly . . . .

What about real thorns? I mean the really nasty ones that stick out from cute little fan palm trees. I have a friend whose landscaper put some of those right next to the
patio. A strange place for a plant with thorns like needles up to 3 inches (that’s 7-8 cms.) long. I am sure native peoples used them for sewing and fish hooks but what are they doing next to the patio? Seems like they are lying in wait for the unsuspecting guest or maybe a pet. Not in my yard, for sure.

Then there are the other trees with spines. The cedro is one. The spines are thick and conical and very rough. Or the ceiba with warty spines. Then there is the palo verde and the white cedar (hura crepitans) and a bunch of other trees, large and small, that make an outing into the local patches of jungle such a treat. If you slip and start to fall, there are certain trees that you should not grab. Better to hit the ground than get some of these spines in your hand.

So, trees have spines for protection too, but why? Most of these spines start at ground level and go up 3 to 5 meters (that would be 10 to 17 feet) and then peter out. Why do these trees need protection? For the answer, we have to look into the distant past.

Until about 11,000 years ago there were megafauna roaming through what is now Costa Rica. How do we know? A bone from the extinct camelop (a camel-like animal) was found during digging of the new section of the Panama Canal. There are, of course, many other examples in the fossil record.

So, suppose you are a ceiba tree and you don’t want a josephoartigasia chewing on you. Just a rodent? Think again; the josephoartigasia was the size of a cow. How do you protect yourself from an animal the size of a cow that wants to chew on your trunk? You grow spines, of course; nice big ones. Or you grow warty bark that discourages chewing.

Well, the megafauna are gone but the spines and warts persist. Perhaps one day they will be gone as well. Until then, be careful what you reach for. Even trees can bite.

A.M. Costa Rica/Victoria Torley                    
Cactus is from the La Garita Central Vivero

Plant for the Week

Here’s a prickly one for you. I think of this cactus as “The Sleeping Caterpillar” but I am sure it has another more appropriate name. As with all cacti, sandy soil and easy on the water, although many seem to thrive in our wet climate here by the lake. Oh, do I need to remind you to wear thick gloves?

If you would like to suggest a topic for this column, simply send a letter to the editor.  And, for more garden tips, visit

Costa Rican News
Retire NOW in Costa Rica
Fine Dining in Costa Rica
The CAFTA Report
Fish fabulous Costa Rica

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2015 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission.
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

From Page 7:

New access plan OK'd for City Mall

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A government committee has approved an access plan for Alajuela's City Mall.

The access will be into Ruta 153.

The construction project has been controversial because the location is near the Hospital de Alajuela, and neighbors have been objecting over what they see will be high traffic.

The action was by the little-known Comisión de Carreteras de Accesos Restringidos  of the Minsterio de Obras Públicas y Transportes.

Developers now have six months to construct the roadways that will make the connection. The road ministry said the job is about $8 million.