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(506) 2223-1327                          Published Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, in Vol. 13, No. 165                 Email us
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Jo Stuart
Cascata del Bosco

2013 is on track to be a record year for reported crime
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Crime reported in the first seven months of this year showed an 11 percent increase over 2012, the Judicial Investigating Organization said Tuesday.

Murders, street robberies, thefts and home invasions all showed increases, said the report.

The data came from the agency's criminal analysis division and only address crimes that have been reported. An  unrelated telephone survey that was the subject of a news story earlier this month estimated that there may have been as many as 200,000 robberies or assaults from February to June. That survey was commissioned by the  Cámara Norteamericana Costarricense de Comercio and  the accounting and consulting firm Deloitte.

The Judicial Investigating Organization said that there were 3,603 asaltos in the seven months. That was reported to be 607 more than the previous period in 2012.

The word in Spanish usually is translated as a robbery and not as a physical assault as in English.

There were 227 murders in the first seven months of 2013. During the same period in 2012 there were 209. That could be considered good news because in the same period in 2008 there were 260, in 2011 there were 283, in 2010 there were 307 and in 2011 there were 291, according to the agency. During these years wars were being waged by rival drug gangs.

Still, an 8.6 percent increase in reported  murders was not what Casa Presidencial was seeking. The Laura Chinchilla administration has been promoting the idea that crime had decreased and cherry-picking data to do it.

San José was the provence with the most murders followed by Limón. Because of population differences, that gave Limón a rate of 14.4 murders per 100,000 population compared with the 5.1 per 100,000 in San José.

The central canton of San José, generally considered the city, had  21 reported murders during this period under study. Goicoechea was second in the province with 16, and Tibás and Desamparados tied for third with 14 each.
crime stats
Judicial Investigating Organization graphic
Comparison between criminal complains filed in the first seven months of 2012 and those filed during the same period in 2013

The central canton of Limón in that province also has 21 murders during the period, and Pococí was second with 13.

Because many of these murders still are under investigation, agents could not provide motives for 72. Arguments led to killing in 52 cases with revenge third with 43. Some 41 persons died during the commission of other crimes,  including stickup, according to the data.

The most-used weapon was a firearm, which killed 154 persons or 67 percent of the total, said the agency. Some 42 person died from knife wounds, it said.

With five months to go in 2013, the total murders would appear to project to about 390, the lowest annual amount since 2007 when there were 362. The record was in 2010 with 527 murders.

In the totals so far this year, the judicial report said that nine persons died when citizens or police engaged in self defense and killed a suspect.

In terms of total crime, the central canton of San José also was the leader with 4,271 reported in the first seven months. That is a 12.3 percent increase over the first seven months of 2012. All other cantons in the country had less than 1,000 reported crimes, and a canton such as Mora had just 37 reports, said the agency.

In 2012 the Judicial agency received complaints of 47,433 crimes. Extrapolating the current data suggests that 2013 will end with more than 51,000 reported crimes. That would be a record.

Filing of online criminal complaints initially limited
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Initially only San José residents and those in Limón, San Carlos and Pérez Zeledón will be able to file criminal complaints online, the judiciary said Tuesday. However, officials said they hope to expand the program to 90 percent of the country in five years.

This is the Proyecto Nacional de Fiscalías Electrónicas that is designed to eliminate paperwork in the judicial offices. The II Circuito Judicial de San José  is among the first to take part in the electronic complaint program  that was outlined in a news article Tuesday. That is the judicial circuit that is based at the Tribunales in  Goicoechea where many of the metro area criminal cases are heard.

For expats, the program promises a way to file a judicial complaints from anywhere in the world 24 hours a day. The system also is being set up to allow those involved in a cases to have Internet access.
Now participants and lawyers involved in a criminal case have to show up at the various court houses to obtain the thick case file. If the case is in a Puntarenas court and the individual involved lives in San José, looking at the file requires a long trip.

The Poder Judicial has put up a video HERE to show residents how to file a complaint

In doing so, individuals have to sort through a series of laws that outline the penalties for filing false complaints or for using the names of others.

Judicial officials said Tuesday that the process of filing a complaint can be done by anyone who has a personal digital signature. That is a small plastic card that positively identifies the individual.

Those who do not have such a card and a card reader will have to register before filing a complaint.  Then they will receive a password, said officials.

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A.M. Costa Rica's  Second news page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 165

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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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Legal services


Arcelio Hernandez

Official English/Spanish translator and interpreter
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With over a decade of experience in the fields of:
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Fight against dengue mosquito
declared to be in public interest

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The fight against the dengue mosquito has been declared in the public interest by the executive branch.

Daisy Corrales Díaz, the health minister, said that the declaration would free up some resources and improve the fight against the epidemic.

The Ministerio de Salud is putting into practice a contingency plan to rally a number of agencies. These include the Ministerio de Educación, the Fuerza Pública, the Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud, the Ministerio de Agricultura y Ganadería, Acueductos y Alcantarillados, the Cruz Roja, the Comisión Nacional de Emergencia and local governments.

The wave of dengue has swept Central American and México. The most cases appear to be on Costa Rica's Pacific coast.

In Costa Rica even school kids are involved in trying to eliminate the breeding places of the mosquito in the vicinity of their school.

Health officials said that 25,648 homes containing 115,000 persons have been sprayed in the last six days. Next on the list are the cantons of Nandayure, Nicoya, Puntarenas, Barranca, Orotina, San Mateo, Pérez Zeledón and Siquierres, the ministry said.

Another Guatemalan journalist
added to the murder total

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

Another journalist in Guatemala has been murdered.

The murder of journalist Carlos Orellana Chávez in Guatemala brought strong condemnation by the Inter American Press Association, which urged the authorities to investigate this and other acts in a new wave of violence against the press in the Central American country.

The remains of Orellana Chávez, a 72-year-old journalist and radio announcer with several bullet wounds to the head and other parts of the body was discovered Monday in the town of San Bernadino, Suchitiepéquez province, in the southwest of the country.

In addition to the death of Chávez, the Inter American Press Association last week called for the solving of a criminal attack on journalist Fredy Rodas, which also occurred in Suchitiepéquez province, and another on Vernick Gudiel, head of the investigative team of the newspaper elPeriódico, whose home was shot at by unidentified assailants last Thrusday.

The killing of Chávez was initially speculated to be a car robbery. However, this hypothesis was discarded after the vehicle was found with two mobile phones some cash, and other personal objects belonging to the victim. According to the police, all that was missing was the firearm Chávez used to carry.

The person in charge of the Public Prosecutor’s Office for Crimes Against Journalists, Elmer Yat, said that “we are giving priority to the theory that the attack was due to the victim’s work as a journalist.”

With more than 25 years on the radio Chávez hosted the program De la radio a la television "From Radio to Television" on the cable channel Óptimo 23, in which he denounced corruption in Suchitiepéquez. He had also served as the mayor of Mazatenango from 2000 to 2004.

The Guatemala Journalists Association condemned this new incident and recalled the murder this year of three other journalists: Luis de Jesús Lima on Aug. 6, Luis Alberto Lemus Ruano on April 7 and Napoleón Jarquín Duarte on March 20.

Two performers
Museo Histórico Cultural Juan Santamaría photo   
The two performers, Ms. Trigueros and Ms. Won.

Museum midday program
features Mozart and Beethoven

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Museo Histórico Cultural Juan Santamaría will offer Beethoven and Mozart for those who attend the  Teatro al Mediodía en el Museo in Alajuela Thursday at 12:10 p.m.

The duo of  Won Yong Lee on the piano and  Eva Trigueros on the violin will be featured.

The program includes sonatas for the piano and violin by both  Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Ludwig van Beethoven.

The pianist, Ms. Won, is a doctor of piano and teaches at the Eastman School of Music in Rochester, New York, and forms part of two Costa Rican chamber music groups.

Ms. Trigueros plays with the  Silicon Valley Symphony Orchestra, Santa Cruz Symphony Orchestra, the Orquesta Municipal de Heredia, the Orquesta Filarmónica de Costa Rica and the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional. She also is a member of two chamber music groups here.

Home show starts today

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Expocasa y Decoración 2013 will open today at the  Pedregal events center in Santa Ana, and visitors are expected to be faced with thousands of homes and properties for sale.  The event runs until Sunday.

Virtual divers getting chance
to help count sea creatures

By the British Ecological Society news service

Scientists are taking the public with them to study the world’s coral reefs, thanks to 360 degree panoramas from Google's underwater street-view format. Results from this pioneering project – which will allow ecologists to harness people power to discover how coral reefs are responding to climate change – will be presented at an international ecology meeting, in London this week.

Ove Hoegh-Guldberg of the University of Queensland leads the research associated with the Catlin Seaview Survey.  The survey uses image recognition technology to automatically assess creatures on the seabed. So far it has already taken hundreds of thousands of images on the Great Barrier Reef and in the Caribbean.

“This new technology allows us to rapidly understand the distribution and abundance of key organisms such as corals at large scales. Our expeditions in 2012 to the Great Barrier Reef recorded over 150 kilometers of reef-scape using these methods,” he says.

The project is now being expanded by building citizen science into the research, which he hopes will raise awareness and provide more data. “We are planning to involve online citizens to help us count a wide range of organisms that appear in the high-definition images. Anyone with access to a computer will be able to help us log creatures such as stingrays, turtles, fish and crown of thorns starfish.”

“Only 1 percent of humanity has ever dived on a coral reef and by making the experience easily accessible the survey will help alert millions of people around the world to the plight of coral reefs,” he says.

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users guide

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Old pages

Each day someone complains via e-mail that the newspages are from yesterday or the day before. A.M. Costa Rica staffers check every page and every link when the newspaper is made available at 2 a.m. each week day.

So the problem is with the browser in each reader's computer. Particularly when the connection with the server is slow, a computer will look to the latest page in its internal memory and serve up that page.

Readers should refresh the page and, if necessary, dump the cache of their computer, if this problem persists. Readers in Costa Rica have this problem frequently because the local Internet provider has continual problems.


The A.M. Costa Rica search page has a list of all previous editions by date and a space to search for specific words and phrases. The search will return links to archived pages.


A typical edition will consist of a front page and six other newspages. Each of these pages can be reached by links near the top and bottom of the pages.


Classified pages are updated daily. Employment listings are free, as are listings for accommodations wanted, articles for sale and articles wanted. The tourism page and the real estate sales and real estate rentals are updated daily.

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Real Estate
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What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details


A.M. Costa Rica

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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 165
Real Estate
About us

Ortega creates a distraction with comment about Guanacaste
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Nicaraguan President Daniel Ortega and his loose lips are a public relations practitioner's dream.

The high point of the Costa Rica response to Ortega's unexpected comment last week is a march Thursday at the Tribunales de Justicia in Nicoya. President Laura Chinchilla will share the spotlight with Marco Antonio Jiménez, the local mayor.

Analysis of the news

Ortega was speaking at the anniversary of his country's navy when he suggested that Nicaragua should reclaim Guanacaste.

Residents there voted to join with Costa Rica in 1824. This is the province with the great Pacific beaches.

The march will give political leaders a public platform to show their defense of the country without actually being in risk.

Ortega, on the other hand, is able to redirect Costa Rican concern to Guanacaste from the mouth of the Río San Juan in the east where he is trying to create a marina and hotel for tourist development.

Even lawmakers wanted to close down their activities to join the march. But that idea failed to win enough votes Tuesday. Some still will participate.
The Thursday event is called the Marcha Por la Patria and is organized by the municipality. Schools may be let out for the 10 a.m. event, too.

Ortega also has to be thinking of the home crowd. He is clashing with the government of Colombia over maritime territory. Colombia owns San Andres and adjacent islands in the Caribbean. The country has repudiated a World Court ruling that gives some of the maritime territory to Nicaragua. The situation is more than lines on a map.  There may be petroleum under the sea floor.

In the Pacific, Ortega's government is at odds with Costa Rica over the extent of each country's territorial waters and sprawling zone of economic interest.

Costa Rica already is in the World Court with Nicaragua on the matter of the invasion of a small northeaster piece of Costa Rica at the mouth of the Río San Juan. That case is dragging on, although Ms. Chinchilla has not shown any reluctance to go to the United Nations and the court again over Ortega's Guanacaste comment.

Nicaragua is purchasing some armed patrol boats from Russia and vows to protect its interests in the Caribbean. Armed confrontations with Colombia's well-equipped navy is a real possibility, particularly if petroleum is discovered.

In the meantime, Costa Rica is the nearest neighbor to taunt without danger of armed response because the country has no military.

Orchestra program this weekend features Finnish violinist
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

U.S. conductor  Carl St. Clair will again lead the Orquesta Sinfónica Nacional. The concerts Friday night and Sunday morning will be the seventh of the season for the orchestra.

Soloist will be Finnish violinist  Elina Vähälä with a presentation of popular works of  Beethoven and  Tchaikovsky.

The program includes "Concerto for Violin and Orchestra in D major, Opus 61" by Ludwig Van Beethoven. The  Pyotr Ilyich  Tchaikovsky work is "Symphony No. 6 'Pathetique.' Opus 74."

This will be the third time that St. Clair has directed the orchestra. He is director of the Symphonic Orchestra of the Pacific in California and is a former student of Leonard Bernstein.

He also has an extensive resume working with many of the major U.S. orchestras.

As always, the Friday performance will be at 8 p.m. and the Sunday performance will be at 10:30 a.m., both in the Teatro Nacional.
Ministerio de Cultura y Juventud photo
Carl St. Clair in a previous appearance here.

Ticket prices range from 4,000 to 17,000 colons, that is from $8 to $34.

Ms. Vähälä first appeared professionally with the  Lahti Symphony in her home country when she was just 12. This is the first time that she has been in Costa Rica.

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You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this page and this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2013 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 165
Real Estate
About us

President proposes shakeup of road agency and public works ministry
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The executive branch sent to the legislature Tuesday a series of bills that would revamp the  Consejo Nacional de Vialidad and the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes.

The Consejo handles the roads and is part of the ministry.

President Laura Chinchilla also announced that a companion bill would make expropriating property for highways easier. Another bill is designed to give road builders access to gravel and other material in emergencies similar to the access that municipalities now have.

Casa Presidencial said that the proposals would improve the nation's system of roadways.
The proposals have been in the works for 10 months, officials said.

The  Ministerio de Obras Públicas has been a burden for President Chinchilla. Employees there have been accused of wrong doing regarding the efforts to construct a highway on the south shore of the Río San Juan.

The projects, designed to counter Nicaragua's intentions in the area, were contracted as an emergency.

The work was badly done and resulted in Nicaragua claiming that the runoff was damaging the river.

Eventually the contractors were removed and the ministry is to finish the job.

There also have been complaints that many projects are far behind schedule.

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The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

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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.
Geroge's view
An evening View
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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!

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A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
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San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 165
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Senseless Oklahoma killing
results in arrests of teens

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Three teenage boys were charged on Tuesday in the killing of an Australian university student in Oklahoma, in what police said might have been a thrill killing.
Christopher Lane, 23, of Melbourne, was found dead of a gunshot wound Friday, according to police in Duncan, Oklahoma, about 80 miles (130 kms.) south of Oklahoma City.
Charged with first-degree murder are Chancey Allen Luna, 16, and James Francis Edwards Jr., 15, according to the Stephens County District Attorney's office. Michael Dewayne Jones, 17, who allegedly drove the vehicle carrying the other suspects, was charged with use of a vehicle in the discharge of a weapon and accessory to murder after the fact, the office said.
Lane was out jogging during a visit to his girlfriend and her family in Duncan Friday, when he was shot in the back, police said. He attended East Central University in Ada, Oklahoma, where he was on a baseball scholarship.
According to police, Jones said that the teens decided to kill someone for the fun of it.
Police said a witness called 911 when she saw Lane stagger across the road and fall.
According to police, Jones told them on Sunday that the three teenagers saw Lane jogging and decided he would be their target, and then followed him in their vehicle and shot Lane in the back.
Police used surveillance video from area businesses to identify the vehicle, which was found later at a church parking lot with the three suspects inside after a caller reported three youths with guns who were threatening to kill someone.
The vehicle's trunk contained a shotgun with the serial numbers sanded off, but the actual weapon used in the shooting has not been found, police said.
If convicted, Luna and Edwards face a possible sentence of life in prison without parole, according to court documents. Under a 2005 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, they cannot receive the death penalty because they were under 18 at the time of the crime, according to David Slane, an Oklahoma City criminal defense attorney.
Lane's father, Peter Lane, called the killing senseless in an interview broadcast on CNN from Australia.
“There's not going to be any good coming out of this because it was so senseless,” Lane said. “It happened, it's wrong and we're just trying to deal with it the best we can.”
Duncan, the county seat of Stephens County, has a population of 23,287, according to the 2012 U.S. Census estimate.
In an interview on CNN television, Duncan Police Chief Danny Ford said the usually quiet community is outraged. The community has some fear, Ford said. “I think they have some of the same questions that maybe folks in Australia have, and that's about how do these kids get guns. It's pretty simple, they steal them.”
In a statement, the university baseball coach, Dino Rosato, said Lane was a well-respected teammate.
“He was an absolute joy to coach,” said Rosato. “He set a great example for all of his teammates, but more importantly for the younger players. He was a mature student-athlete who his teammates could look to for advice and support.”

Colombian rebel negotiators
admit partial responsibility

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Colombia's largest rebel organization for the first time Tuesday accepted partial responsibility for decades of bloodshed and called for a commission to investigate the causes of the armed conflict that has killed more than 200,000.

The admission from the Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia, known as the FAR, came after a similar one by the Colombian government and appeared to mark some progress in peace negotiations that have dragged on for nine months in Havana while fighting continues in Colombia.

“The FARC are aware that up to now there have not been victors nor vanquished, and the struggle continues,” said a statement, read by rebel negotiator Pablo Catatumbo on the sidelines of the talks. “Without a doubt there has also been cruelty and pain provoked by our forces.”

The Colombian government and other sectors of society have accused the FARC, which has an estimated 8,000 members, of evading its responsibility for the bloodshed and displacement of millions of people over the years.

Last month a government commission blamed the government, rebels and right-wing paramilitary forces for the carnage and suffering the conflict has caused.

President Juan Manuel Santos acknowledged at the time that the Colombian state was responsible for serious violations of human rights during the conflict.

Discussions to end the longest and last remaining armed conflict in Latin America began last November.

The two sides, which are working through a five-point agenda, have reached only partial agreement on agrarian reform.

Negotiators now are discussing the FARC's inclusion into the political system and then will move on to reparations to war victims, the drug trade and an end to the conflict.

The FARC statement said that it was proposing in the talks that a commission of Colombian and foreign experts be created to investigate the causes of the conflict with an eye toward war reparations.

“We must all recognize the need to approach the issue of victims, their identity and reparation with complete fidelity to the cause of peace and reconciliation,” it said.

Chinese herbal smorgasbørd
might help spinal injuries

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Traditional Chinese herbal medicines have been used to treat a variety of ailments for centuries. Now a new study finds an ancient medicine called ji-sui-kang can improve locomotor function in rats with spinal cord injuries.

The researchers reported that after being treated with ji-sui-kang, the injured rats showed decreased tissue damage and the structure of their neural cells was better preserved when compared to rats in a control group.

The data also showed that ji-sui-kang treatment might reduce inflammation and cell death, as well as boost local oxygen supply in the affected area. After a while, the ji-sui-kang appeared to restore function and promote tissue regeneration.

Those involved with the study say their work provides an important foundation for further study into the use of ji-sui-kang therapy.

“A number of anecdotal reports from Chinese medicine practitioners indicate that treatment with a novel herbal formulation, JSK, for periods of one week or three months improved functional recovery,” said the study’s co-lead investigator Shucui Jiang, head of the Hamilton NeuroRestorative Group at McMaster University in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada.

For this study, the researchers divided their rat test subjects into two groups.  One group was treated with the herbal medicine treatment while the control group was given a saline solution. Treatment began immediately after spinal cord injury and the test period was 21 days.

The investigators reported that, within seven days of the start of their experiment, the hind limb locomotor function was significantly better in the group of rats treated with ji-sui-kang as compared to the group that only got the saline.

Throughout the 21-day test period, the rats treated with ji-sui-kang continued to display better motor function, appeared to support their weight better, and showed more coordinated movement than those in the control group. After examining microscopic samples of the spinal cord from rats in each group, the researchers found that the structure of the injured spinal cord of those treated with ji-sui-kang was better preserved. Additionally, the size of the injured area was significantly reduced about a week after the injury.

“Our data suggest that JSK may enhance tissue recovery by reducing cell growth inhibitors and by promoting the proliferation of cells within the injured spinal cord,” said the other co-lead investigator Michel Rathbone, a professor at the Department of Medicine at McMaster University.

The researchers said their study suggests ji-sui-kang treatment could help protect against further spinal cord injury caused by damage to local blood vessels.

Citing proprietary reasons, the authors of the study did not reveal the entire herbal composition of their ji-sui-kang treatment. But, they did list some of the ingredients which included ginseng, rhizoma, glycyrrhizae radix, paeoniae alba radix and cinnamomi cortex.

Al Jazeera has a problem
getting U.S. television access

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

New cable network Al Jazeera America introduced itself to U.S. viewers Tuesday with reports on political strife in Egypt and a shooting at a Georgia elementary school, making its bid to win audiences shortly after a major pay TV distributor declined to carry the network.
The decision by AT&T's U-verse pay-TV service stemmed from a contract dispute over terms to carry the new channel, AT&T spokesman Mark Siegel said.
Globally, Al Jazeera is seen in more than 260 million homes in 130 countries. But the new U.S. channel funded by the emir of Qatar has so far had difficulty getting distributors, in part because Al Jazeera was perceived by some as being anti-American during the Iraq war.
Before AT&T's announcement, Al Jazeera America said it would be available in more than 40 million homes, roughly half the reach of Time Warner Inc's CNN. U-verse was launched in 2006 and had five million video customers at the end of June in markets such as Texas and California.
“We could not reach an agreement with the owner that we believed provided value for our customers and our business,” AT&T spokesman Siegel said.
Defining the new channel's mission clearly will be crucial for Al Jazeera to gain a foothold in the United States, according to advertisers, executives and industry experts.
In its first hour at mid-afternoon, Al Jazeera pledged to cover “issues that matter to America and the world beyond.” Anchors said they would provide in-depth coverage of stories ignored by other media outlets, with bureaus in cities they considered underserved such as Nashville and Detroit.
Al Jazeera America hired ABC news veteran Kate O'Brian to be its president and on-air talent including CNN veterans Ali Velshi and Soledad O'Brien.
Its news coverage kicked off with reports on Egypt, the Georgia school shooting and wildfires in the western United States, topics also covered by cable news competitors Tuesday. Al Jazeera America also reported on a hunger strike by inmates protesting conditions in California prisons and Kodak's plan to rebound from bankruptcy.
It turned to sports with an interview of retired slugger Gary Sheffield about baseball's steroids scandal. A show called “Inside Story” explored the impact of climate change on U.S. cities and working conditions in Bangladeshi factories.
Audience ratings data were not yet available.
Media critic Howard Kurtz, speaking on rival Fox News Channel, said Al Jazeera America's early coverage was “not much different, at least so far, than what you might see on Fox News, CNN or MSNBC.” One top story on Egypt was right down the middle in terms of balance, he said.
The network is airing six minutes of commercials per hour, below the 15 to 16 minute average on cable news. Executives indicated they are willing to lose money in the near term.
Advertisers Tuesday included Procter & Gamble Co's  Gillette for its Fusion razors and phone service provider Vonage .

Prosecution rests its case
in Army major's murder trial

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Prosecutors in the trial of accused Fort Hood shooter Major Nidal Hasan rested their case Tuesday after presenting 89 witnesses and a large amount of technical evidence over the past weeks.  It is now time for the accused, who is representing himself, to call witnesses and present his case.

After presenting their last witness in the case against Major Hasan, military prosecutors rested and the presiding judge, Col. Tara Osborn, set Wednesday for the defense to begin presenting its case.  Hasan is accused of murdering 12 soldiers and a civilian and wounding more than 30 others during a shooting rampage at the army base on Nov. 9, 2009.

Jeffrey Addicott, a military law expert at the Center for Terrorism Law at St. Mary's University in San Antonio, says the prosecution presented a complete picture of how Hasan planned the attack, how it was carried out, and the horrific results in terms of people wounded and killed.

"The prosecution put on a strong case," he said. "They have put on scores of witnesses. They covered their bases from A to Z. They have proven that he is the individual who killed the victims and wounded the other victims."

Since Hasan is representing himself, he will be able to call and question witnesses and present any other evidence he has today.  Judge Osborn ruled earlier that he cannot argue that the murder was justified in order to protect others, namely, the Taliban and Islamic radical fighters in Afghanistan or Iraq.  But Addicott believes, based on statements Hasan made earlier, that he, himself, will take the stand and admit to the crime.

"He is going to take full responsibility and full credit, if you will, because in his mind what he did was justified," he said. "Now, the judge will not allow him to raise defense of others as a defense, but she cannot stop him from talking about why he did it."

Addicott says that if Hasan does this he will then open the way for prosecutors to ask in cross examination about his jihad motive, something the judge had not allowed them to mention during their presentation of evidence.
"They will be able to ask him those questions, because once he takes the stand and opens that door then it is fair game," he said.

Over the past two weeks Hasan has remained mostly silent, asking few questions of prosecution witnesses.  This sped up the proceedings and allowed prosecutors to wrap up sooner than had been expected.  Hasan has indicated he only expects to call two witnesses, so Jeffrey Addicott says the closing arguments could come as early as Thursday, with the case then going to the jury, known in military law as the panel.  He says they could have a verdict by early next week and then the trial could move to the punishment phase in which panel members would determine whether to apply the death penalty.

Survey shows mobile apps
integrating into consumer lives

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Consumers are using apps for shorter bursts of time and opting to snack on content more frequently, according to newly released data.

A record 70 billion smartphone and tablet apps are expected to be downloaded globally this year, according to market research firm ABI Research. But consumers' attention spans for apps are dropping.

“People are spending overall a fairly decent amount of time in the app, but it's small intervals of time repeated more frequently,” said Raj Aggarwal, chief executive of Boston-based web analytics company Localytics, which conducted the study.

The study looked at how consumers used over 500 news apps across 100 million iPhone, Android and Windows smartphones between July 2012 and July 2013.

It found that consumers spent on average 26 percent less time interacting with the apps during each session, but that they opened the apps 39 percent more often, for an average 25 times a month, up sharply from 18 times the previous year.

“The whole goal of mobile is to get people the information they need as quickly as possible,” said Aggarwal, who said shorter, more frequent sessions with apps were a sign of their increasing integration into consumers' daily lives.

“They're more engaged with the device, and not just using it as a way to kill time,” he said.

Apps are also leveraging context, such as a user's location, or the current weather in their area, to pull users back into the app more frequently with information that is relevant to where they are and what they are doing.

“The weather apps might proactively message people and say, 'Hey, there's a storm coming' or 'Today's going to be really hot day' as a way to bringing people back in,” Aggarwal explained.

He said consumers were similarly using social media apps for shorter bursts of time but much more frequently.

“Social networking apps have continued to grow rapidly in terms of the total amount of time people spend with them, but the average session is actually pretty small. But when you look at the amount of time people open these apps over the course of a month it's huge,” he added.

“It's close to 45 times a month, so people are coming back to them multiple times per day.”

Accordingly, apps are limiting content that people can post, to keep it brief and palatable for consumers.

Vine, for iPhone and Android, allows users to share videos as long as they are shorter than six seconds. And in June, Instagram updated their app to allow users to share videos, but only if they are shorter than 15 seconds.

The one area where average session length grew longer was games. According to the data, games captured consumer attention for 78 percent more time, increasing to 8.7 minutes per session in 2013 from 4.9 minutes for each one the previous year.

Republicans are divided
over Obamacare stalemate

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. lawmakers return to Washington next month and they face a deadline Oct. 1 on how to continue funding the federal government.

A group of Republicans is threatening to force a government shutdown unless Congress votes to deny funding for President Barack Obama’s signature health care reform law, known as the Affordable Care Act.

Obama signed health care reform into law in 2010, but the battle over its implementation continues.  Groups for and against the health-care law are running TV ads in hopes of winning public support.

Some Republicans are demanding that Congress defund the health care law as part of any agreement to renew overall government spending in October, including Sen. Ted Cruz of Texas.

“It is not working, said Cruz. "It is hurting health care and now is the opportunity to do it if the American people rise up and hold our elected officials accountable.”

Joining Cruz in the effort is Sen. Marco Rubio of Florida. Both are considered potential presidential contenders in 2016.

“It will do irreparable damage to our economy and to our country," said Rubio. "I do not think you can say that you are against Obamacare if you vote for a budget that funds it.”

The Republican-controlled House of Representatives has frequently voted to defund the health-care law.

But the effort has been blocked in the Democratically-controlled Senate and would be vetoed by the president.

Obama was asked about the defunding effort during a recent news conference. He said, “The idea that you would shut down the government unless you prevent 30-million people from getting health care is a bad idea.”

Congressional Democrats are also fighting the idea of defunding the law, including House Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi.

“I think they are aimless," she said. "I think they are chaotic and I think they are making matters worse for the American people when we should be resolving this.”

A number of senior Republicans in both the House and Senate also oppose the effort to defund and the issue has become a point of division within the party. But Republican congressional leaders, including House Speaker John Boehner, remain noncommittal.

“And I am confident that when we get into the fall we will find that it may be a messy process, but I suspect we will find a way to get there,” he said.

The move to defund Obamacare is being driven by Tea Party activists, says analyst David Hawkings of Roll Call, a newspaper that covers Congress.

“Conservative Republicans, the Tea Party Republicans, have been itching for a fight ever since they got here in 2011.  There are still a solid number of Republicans in the House especially who are itching for that kind of a confrontation and think they will win it,” he said.

Republican strategist Ford O’Connell is among those warning Republicans not to do it.

“It is a very, very risky strategy that could come back and bite the Republicans at a very important time when they are trying to change their identity and change their perception and win elections in 2014, so they can grow their numbers and govern in Congress,” he said.

Veteran Republicans worry that because they were blamed for government shutdowns in the 1990’s during budget confrontations with former President Bill Clinton they will be again if there is a shutdown over the health-care law.

Author behind many movies
dies of stroke complications

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

American author Elmore Leonard, whose ear for gritty, realistic dialog helped bring dozens of hard-bitten crooks, cops and cowboys to life in nearly 50 novels, died Tuesday several weeks after a stroke. He was 87.
“Elmore passed away this morning at 7:15 a.m. at home surrounded by his loving family,” according to an announcement on his Web site, It did not provide other details.
Leonard, who first wrote Westerns when he gave up his advertising agency job in the 1950s before moving on to crime and suspense books, suffered a stroke July 29.
Known by the nickname Dutch, Leonard had his commercial breakthrough in 1985 with the publication of “Glitz.”
His following books, including “Get Shorty,” “Out of Sight,” “Killshot,” “Bandits” and “Freaky Deaky,” came out every year-and-a-half or so and were bestsellers.
Leonard's 47th book, “Blue Dreams,” was expected to be published this year.
Hollywood had an affinity for Leonard's books, and more than 25 of his works were made into movies or television shows, beginning with Paul Newman in the 1967 film “Hombre.” The Western story “3:10 to Yuma” and the novel “The Big Bounce” were each adapted for film twice.


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Five bedroom home
Five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths plus guest house
Price reduced $100,000 for quick sale. Features include out door BBQ, swimming pool, plus on the beach. The home is completely furnished with U.S. products. Each room is individually air conditioned.  Hot water in bathrooms, kitchen and laundry room.  Fully furnished. Includes TV’s, refrigerator/freezer, dish washer, microwave, electric stove/oven, washer & dryer and many “as seen on TV” appliances.  To see more, go to YouTube
Asking  $250,000.    Call Gary 8784-2945 or email

humming bird nest

Bed & Breakfast for sale and personal home with 2 houses on property of 3/4 acre (3,030 m2) and buildings w/verandas & carport approximately 350 m2. One house at entrance is central to village w/gated parking lot and a 3-bedroom house for rental or employees/family w/carport/yard/gardens. A 50-meter sendero winds to the top among lush gardens where the main house is situated w/2 buildings attached by verandas & stairway to second floor.  There are 2 bedrooms, sala, 4 baths, large kitchen, laundry rooms, work bodega, storage bodega and hot tub on veranda w/tiled shower room.  Home is surrounded by tropical gardens, views of Arenal Volcano, panoramic views of Lake Arenal, private w/school owned property on one side, pasture land on back side and connecting entry gate on other side to Cabinas El Castillo & Fusion Restaurant.  A bird watcher's paradise w/hummingbirds, Montezuma, toucans, butterflies and visits from howler monkeys.  The B&B is listed four consecutive editions of Lonely Planet and the first established B&B in this area.  Photos can be viewed on the Web site:  Make your dream come true with a slice of paradise in a quiet, private setting. Call Ellen Neely at  8835-8711.  Email:

Liberia farm
Must Sell - Immediately
Guanacaste - Liberia Farm

9 hectares (24 acres)
$ 0.66 cents per square meter
Riverfront property and amazing views of 3 volcanoes
10 minutes from Liberia center
$59,500 plus all legal fees

Naranjo views


4254 msq. 1.2 acres - $59,000.00
• 10 minutes to the autopista and Naranjo centro
• Tranquil and Quiet
• Landscaped with fruit trees and flowering plants, and coffee#
• Incredible views - The Central Valley and nature reserve
• Close to public transportation - paved main road
• Building pad prepared and soil tested
• Survey/topo
• All services in place and underground - water/electricity/phone

Playa Palo Seco - Gorgeous beachfront 2-story home of roughly 2,000 square feet set on a half acre ocean front full of beautiful fruit and shade trees in Playa Palo Seco.
Playa Paol Seco
This home features two bedrooms, three full baths, high quality A/C units, huge front and backyard, and of course, a fantastic view of the Pacific Ocean just feet away from the front door! Playa Palo Seco is only minutes from  the tourist hot spot Jacó but far enough away to be quiet and tranquil. This is an incredible opportunity at $150,000! Owner financing is available! Visit for more information!

El Castillo - Up to 60-acre tract with breathtaking views of Volcán Arenal and Lake
Arenal are available. Multiple GORGEOUS home building sites are scattered throughout this area. This is definitely a one-of-a-kind piece of land that cannot be replicated. Perfectly suited for either real estate investment, homebuilding, or even a resort. Owner financing  is available! Please visit us at for more information!

San Ramon - Beautiful tracts of land of all shapes and sizes for sale in the San Ramón
San Ramon
area. Vista Rica Realty has been in the business for over 20 years which allows us to outcompete in not only selection, but also price. Oceanview homesites from only $30,000 with easy access to San Ramón. Up to 90-hectare fincas perfect for raising cattle or an off-the-grid project. Owner financing is available! Please visit us at for more information!

Guiones retreat
Approximately half acre on the beach with private path to the surf. Very private three-home complex with pool, spacious patios with two wet bars, barbeque and yoga area. Featuring a three-bedroom ranch style home plus a two story Mexican villa style home with two master suites, large kitchen and living area with ocean views and breezes upstairs and a garden apartment downstairs with separate entrance. A caretaker's or teenager's cottage and lots of space for expansion. PRICED FOR QUICK SALE: $899,000.  Call 506 8867-8883 or

Monte Mar
Hacienda Monte Mar
Gated Community near the beach
located halfway between Jaco and Quepos/Manuel Antonio
 BEST DEAL in Costa Rica!!! Lots starting at just $18,500 with financing available.
 Lot/ House packages from around $60,000
Great Retirement, Vacation, or investment option!
Lots of wildlife on the property. Gated front entrance, caretakers on site,
security and lawn maintenance, no time limit to build. Absentee Owner Friendly.
Water and power on site.
USA Toll Free 1 866 833-4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718-9891

Beautiful fully renovated house in Bello Horizonte, Escazu, 446 sq. meters. Four bedrooms; four baths. Price includes all furniture and fixtures - ready to move in! Light, bright and airy....$550,000 USD. Telephone 2288.6451. More details HERE!

Condo for sale in Flamingo

Ocean view 3-bedroom, 3 1/2-bathroom condo. Designer furnished 1,800 square feet, gated community. Only six units. Huge pool and balcony, pet friendly, parking, walking distance to Flamingo beach, banks, grocery store, farmacia, etc. New building. $349,000 asking. Ask for photos. 8705-0056. or 1-800-536-2322.

Casa de Eden
For sale by owner Playa Conchal home. Reduced $329,000

Casa de Eden is an ocean view three-bedroom, 2.5-bath, with outdoor shower, private pool located only minutes from Playa Conchal.  The home is in a private, secure community surrounded by nature but still only 20 minutes to the resort towns of Flamingo & Tamarindo and less than an hour from the Liberia airport. There is 2,600 square feet under the roof, which includes a large outdoor terrace and has phone, Internet & satellite TV. The home boasts luxury finishings: AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire professional series stainless steel appliances, granite kitchen countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom wood cabinetry, ceramic tile.  Contact  U.S. 1-800-939-2617 or CR (506) 8349-2025.

San Pedro condo
Condo for Sale in Flor del Este
Lourdes, Montes de Oca San Jose

Located behind The Foundation Costa Rica Canada 500 meters north of Inglesia Lourdes. U Latina, UCR, and U Fieditas are located within 5 minutes.  Beautiful mountain view from roof covered 3rd floor terraza. Condo is a 3-story. Three/four-bedroom, three and half bath unit within a secure complex of 40 condos with high cement outside walls with only one entrance manned by an armed guard 24 hours per day. In addition, to security fencing, and electric wire, a recorded security camera system is monitored within the guard house. Residence has a telephone communication system to contact the guard house. In addition there is a green park area inside the complex for children to safely play and an outside parking area in from of guard house for visitors. Equipped with an independent wired security system in addition to iron bars on windows and patio doors. Equipped with circuit breaker box and 220-volt service for hot water heater, stove and dryer. Also has water storage tank under parking area and water pump to maintain high pressure on all three floors. American-style washer and electric dryer, Refrigerator, glass top stove, and kitchen cabinets included. $185,000. Other furniture items may be available for purchase.
Call Bill   (English) C.R. Phone: (506) 6011-6987
U.S. Phone:  6630-886-4458  or   (305) 848- 5577
Spanish  phone number: (506) 8799 4041

Guaancaate condos
Little Dreams La Colina Magnolias

Great Guanacaste Beach Condos Available

$28,500 - Little Dreams - Ocotal beach studio condo, furnished upper floor condo in great complex just 1 mile from Ocotal beach, 2 miles from Coco beach, great price for this complex.
$70,000 - La Colina - another Ocotal beach 2 bedroom, 2 bath condo, 80 m2 and fully furnished with upgraded kitchen, complex has Infinity pool, mountain views.

$75,000 Magnolias 2 bedroom, 1.5 bath townhome just 1 minute's walk from Coco beach and the 2 beach clubs in Coco. Nicely furnished, walk to town, 67 m2, perfect location.
Find out more information on these and other condos at my website All 3 of these condos are about 35 minutes away from Liberia Intl. airport, no need to drive a long way to get to your condo.  Call for more information, 1-415-670-9382 or 011-506-826-1211. Or email

Rich Coast Montage
Central Pacific Coast Real Estate, from Jaco to Quepos/Manuel Antonio
- 2 Bedroom House in Gated Community near the beach, $89,000!!
 - Beachfront Residential Lots from $58,000
- Coffee Shop/ Bakery, Coastal Town, Great Location, Real Estate Office Upstairs, Turnkey $85,000 Great ROI
- Lots in Gated Community near the beach from $18,500,
with Financing Available!!
- 3 Bedroom House in Gated Community, furnished, walk to the beach, $120k
 1.25 acre + lots in ECO Development $39,000
- 58-acre Oceanview Property subdividable, $169k
and much more....
USA Toll Free 1 866 833 4005
CR Cell 011 506 8718 9891

Spectacular view property on a ridge near Alajuela.  Large home and 3 rental homes totaling 7,300 square feet (678 square meters) live-in construction.  Property area is 3,376 square meters (0.83 acres) including a vacant lot for expansion options.  In total there are 10 bedrooms, each with an ensuite bath.  Property has pool, rancho, mirador, courtyard and covered parking.  Homes have romantic fireplaces, built-ins, storage, other luxury features.  Turnkey sale includes all appliances, furniture, fixtures, equipment.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at  See property video here:

See virtual tour of accommodations here:

For more details go to:

Arenal Colonial
Property for sale, great potential income
Turnkey business $350K. Rental $1,250/month This luxury home (4,000 square feet and two story private home) is a botanical paradise overlooking beautiful Lake Arenal. Only one block from the lake park and boat ramp. Close to Tabacón hot springs and Monteverde cloud forest. Caño Negro national park and many beautiful beaches along the Pacific are only a short drive away. Costa Rica bird watching, wind surfing, fishing, water sports, ecotourism adventures, hiking, tennis and mountain biking are out your front door. Also has a wonderful view of the Arenal Volcano, a safe 25 miles away. Electric gated entrance. Safe private home and entire property. To see more pictures and info, click here:

Jacó compound
Located in Jacó at Barrio Ricos y Famosos in Calle Europa, Casa Shangri La.
Main house: 3 bedrooms, 3 bath 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 Guacamayas (we have three birds) 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, five telephone lines, high-speed Internet wireless access everywhere. Beautiful gardens with many fruit trees. Price $ 1,350.000 negotiable. All fittings and furniture, included even a car. Owner financing available. German-built, excellent quality and well maintained. More photos on request.

Nicoya views
Property with ocean and gulf view for sale
Tranquil million dollar view, 5,000-sq.meter property with 3/2 home built to American standards, artistically designed and decorated, 16-foot ceilings of mango and tamarindo, appliances, plunge pool, rancho, caretaker apartment, workshop, covered parking, views of Gulf of Nicoya and ocean, in countryside near San José to Caldera highway. Near the lovely town of Esparza. Can provide extra income from bed and breakfast room rental and stellar Tripadvisor reviews. $180,000 506-8869-9274.

For Sale By Owner
1 lot (1.5 acres)  at SIBU (8 lots total) amongst 50 acres of protected jungle gardens with sunset ocean views of Playa Nosara. Underground electric and water.13 minutes from Playa Guiones. Gated. In house financing available. Home of SIBU Sanctuary.

Real estate services
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Business for sale or lease (paid category)7115-12/16/11

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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A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Wednesday, Aug. 21, 2013, Vol. 13, No. 165
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News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC news feed ar disabled on archived pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute

Correa tweaks opposition
with paper-saving comment

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Ecuador President Rafael Correa has suggested he might try to eliminate print newspapers in the country and force them to go all-digital as a way to save paper.

In a Twitter posting late Monday, Correa seemed to propose a referendum that newspapers be published in digital format alone in order "to save paper and avoid so many trees being cut."

President Correa has a prickly relationship with Ecuador's opposition-owned newspapers, and his Tweet was in response to the papers' backing a proposed referendum to block oil exploration in Yasuni national park.

The president announced last week he is asking Ecuador's congress to back drilling in Yasuni, which was declared a U.N. biosphere reserve in 1989.

Ecuadoran Association of Newspaper Editors Director Diego Cornejo said it is too soon to say if Correa is serious about his referendum suggestion.

Kelp farming may held
sea rain forests to revive

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Underwater kelp forests are sometimes called the rain forests of the sea, but, like the verdant jungles on land, the vast beds of seaweed are disappearing, hurting fisheries and coastal communities worldwide.  A project off the coast of California is helping to restore them.

Divers are working in the waters off the Palos Verdes Peninsula in places known as barrens, which once were home to thriving kelp forests. Today, these parts of the seabed are thick with sea urchins, creatures that have proliferated because of pollution and other human activities. The divers are killing some of urchins to thin the population, which is sickly and malnourished.  This restores the natural balance, says David Witting of the National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration.

“That will allow the kelp to establish itself," he said. "Once there's a healthy kelp forest system, the urchins tend to feed off of the broken-off pieces of adult kelp, rather than foraging on the juvenile kelp.”

Scientists regularly head out to sea for the restoration work on the 60-hectare project.

Tom Ford of the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation says kelp forests have been depleted in temperate waters in many parts of the world.

“That list of places would include Korea, Japan, New Zealand, Tasmania, Australia, South Africa, Chile, and then back up the coast here into North America,” he said.

The restoration work is helping young kelp plants take root and flourish. And the return of healthy kelp forests to this offshore area provides a habitat for sea life and again creates a place of natural beauty.

“It's very much like being in a forest under water. So you have that feeling of being under water, but you also have that filtered light," said fisheries scientist David Witting. "There are fish in all parts of the water column. There are tremendous amounts of diversity.”

This intervention is taking place in other places as well, including Canada and South Korea, where coastal environments are under pressure, explains Ford.

“As our human population increases and people are moving into the cities, we are putting more pressures on our coastal environments, so that the pollution problem seems to be getting greater," he said. "At the same time  more mouths to feed, so we're trying to get more and more out of our oceans to accomplish that.”

Many of the techniques to restore the world’s kelp forests are being developed here.  A coalition of environmental and scientific groups, and local fishermen, are supporting the work. All hope to see the return of a healthy population of marine life.  Scientists say the project shows that with some human help, the rain forests of the sea can flourish once again.

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From Page 7:

U.S. regulator investigates hiring
of connected offspring in China

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A U.S. banking regulator's probe into JPMorgan's hiring practices in China will have rival banks scrambling to review their own records, lawyers say, in a market where ties to political and business leaders can be key to winning big deals.
Banks around the world commonly hire people with government connections, but this is especially prevalent in China due to the role the ruling Communist Party plays in the country's business.
Offering a job to one of China's so-called princelings, the offspring of China's political elite, is now a potential liability, with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission investigating whether JPMorgan's Hong Kong office hired the children of China's state-owned company executives with the express purpose of winning underwriting business and other contracts, said a person familiar with the matter.
U.S. law does not stop companies from hiring politically connected executives. But hiring people in order to win business from relatives can be bribery, and the SEC is investigating JPMorgan's actions under the U.S. Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, the person added.
“If I were a competitor of JPMorgan, I would definitely start to do some internal investigations looking into the relationships with princelings,” said a China-based lawyer who works with financial institutions.
Bank of America, Citigroup, Credit Suisse, Goldman Sachs and Macquarie are just a few of the banks to have employed relatives of top Chinese officials in the past five years. The banks declined to comment or did not respond to requests for comment.
Marie Cheung, a Hong Kong-based spokeswoman for JPMorgan, declined to comment on the matter beyond what was in the bank's regulatory filings, noting the bank was cooperating with probes.
The distinction between hiring a relative of a foreign official who may be well connected, and offering employment to such a person in the express hope of winning specific business is key to proving Corrupt practices violations, according to a report published last October by law firm Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher.