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(506) 2223-1327                            Published Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014, in Vol. 14, No. 185                         Email us
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New study says quakes in excess of 9.0 are possible
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Just how strong can an earthquake get?  That is a question that has puzzled researchers, and they were surprised when an undersea quake March 11, 2011, registered a magnitude of 9.0. The earthquake was off the Oshika Peninsula of Tōhoku in Japan.

The Seismological Society of America said that a new study suggests the possibility of quakes 9.0 and even greater along the Ring of Fire that includes western Costa Rica.

Earthquake magnitudes are expressed in base-10 exponential numbers like the velocity of the Starship Enterprise. So every increase in a whole number means a quake 10 times stronger. A 9.0 quake is 10 times stronger than an 8.0.

This study, published online by the Bulletin of the Seismological Society of America, calculates the "probable maximum earthquake magnitude within a time period of interest," estimating the probable magnitude of subduction zone earthquakes for various time periods, including 250, 500 and 10,000 years, said the society.

The study's results indicated most of the subduction zones can generate magnitude 8.5 or greater over a 250-year period, M 8.8 or greater
over 500 years and M 9.0 or greater over 10,000 years. Said the society in a summary of the study:

"The instrumental and historical earthquake record is brief, complicating any attempt to confirm recurrence rates and estimate with confidence the maximum magnitude of an earthquake in a given period. The authors validated their methodology by comparing their findings to the seismic history of the Cascadia subduction zone, revealed through deposits of marine sediment along the Pacific Northwest coast. While some subduction zones have experienced large events during recent history, the Cascadia subduction zone has remained quiet. Turbidite [sedimentary] and onshore paleoseismic studies have documented a rich seismic history, identifying 40 large events over the past 10,000 years.

Some of the participants in the study work for companies that insure property.

Many of Costa Rica's major quakes are a product of the Coco tectonic plate pushing under the lighter Caribbean plate. The visible junction of the plates is off the Pacific coast.  The Nicoya earthquake Sept. 5, 2012, had a magnitude of 7.5. The quake did significant damage in the community of Nicoya. An April 22, 1991, quake in Limón was measured at 7.8.

Gun-totting pair accompanied a very expensive tire
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

While some expats complain about the time and effort needed to obtain a firearms carry permit, two men with such permissions were detained Tuesday night in the company of $4.1 million.

The Fuerza Pública said that the two men, identified by the last names of Vega and Ortiz, were fully licensed to carry weapons. Neither has a criminal record, said officers. The money in U.S. currency was neatly stacked in a spare tire in the back of the pickup in which the men were riding.

Officials are presuming that the money represents proceeds of drug sales, perhaps in the United States, that was being transported back to the headquarters of a Columbian cartel.

Police officers stopped the vehicle and the two men at a checkpoint in Montes de Oro, Puntarenas. An officer became suspicious because the spare tire was not inflated, officials said. The tire also was from a trailer and not the size for the pickup, they added.
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Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía
y Seguridad Pública/Alonso Álvarez

Police officer counts some of the U.S. bills.


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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.

Lucinda Gray, Ph.D.
California Licensed Psychologist
International Practice via the Web
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Remodelling and Construction

Real estate agents and services

CR Beach
Jaco Beach Central Pacific Real Estate
CR Beach Investment Real Estate Broker-Owner
Jeff Fisher invites you to see why this 20-year resident of Costa Rica believes the Central Pacific areas of Jacó Beach-Playa Hermosa-Los Suenos Marina & Golf and Esterillos-Bejuco Beaches are the best place to live and invest.
Reason #1:  SJO Int’l Airport and S.J. suburbs are little more than one hour away.
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See why Jeff and Colin Miller (12 years here), Frances Winborne (more than 23 years), and Junior Diaz (Jacó born & bred) chose the Central Pacific!

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Toll Free: 1-888-782-1119 OR  2643-4334, 2643-3672
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New manual gives coastal dos and don'ts

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The nation's environmental tribunal wants coastal residents to be on the same page with its efforts at protecting the coastline and the seas. So it has produced a manual
that gives some 70 separate pieces of advice to protect the areas.

The  Tribunal Ambiental Administrativo is the organization that conducts sweeps and levies fines for violations. Many of the investigations involve coastal areas including, mangroves, illegal building, management of ditches and obstruction of natural waterways.

The manual also includes copies of selected laws and decrees relating to the coast. The 45-page work is a combination of efforts by many government agencies and also non-profit organizations like The Nature Conservancy and the Programa
coastal manual
Restaruación de Tiburones y Tortugas Marinas.

José Lino Chaves, tribunal president, noted that the marine area is 10 times larger than the continental area of Costa Rica. So the oceans, fishing, scuba diving also are referenced in the manual, along with protection of sea creatures, such as turtles and whales.

American football game is Friday

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Panamá national football team will battle the national team of Costa Rica Friday night for the Central American championship. The game is at 8 p.m. in Estadio
Cuty Monge (Olympic Village), Desamparados, San Jose.

Panamá beat Costa Rica 54-13 last September at the inaugural Central America Bowl in El Salvador.

The game is American football and not to be confused with fútbol as Costa Ricans call soccer.  The American Football Federation of Costa Rica is organizing the event.

American football is gradually gaining a hold in Costa Rica, and there are at least seven teams of Costa Rican players.
American football

Paso Ancho circle restrictions begin

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Driving on the already hectic Circunvalación will become more hectic today.  The  Consejo Nacional de Vialidad said that the multiple-lane highway is being reduced so that construction can begin on a new overpass.

Motorists have lived through other closures in the past when two other overpasses were built. The woes are expected to last for 14 months.

Restrictions will be in force 24 hours a day.

The Circunvalación is the highway that loops around south of the San José center and heads north through San Pedro. There are plans to continue the route along the north side of the city that are unrelated to the overpass work.

The new overpass will be at Paso Ancho, better known as the Guacamaya traffic circle because of the presence of the big vehicle supply and repair firm by that name. This is a $10 million job being financed by the Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo.

Encounter with traffic police is fatal

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Two motorcycle bandits made a big mistake when they decided to rob a motorist and a traffic policeman.

One of the bandits died of a bullet wound to the head and the second was detained while being treated for a gunshot wound to the back, said the Judicial Investigating Organization.

The incident played out early Tuesday when two traffic police officers stopped to help a motorist having vehicle trouble in León XIII. One officer stayed in the vehicle while the other dismounted.  That is when the two bandits pulled up, apparently unaware that there were two and not one traffic police officer.

As they stripped belongings of the motorist and the policeman accompanying him, the second officer realized what was going on and opened fire.

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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 185
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turtle rescue
Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y Seguridad Pública photo
Oswaldo Rodríguez patrols the turtle egg sanctuary where each nest is set out on a carefully mapped grid.
For police officers in Jacó, protecting turtle eggs is a consuming job
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Law enforcement has been facing criticism because police have been unable to stop the theft of turtle eggs on remote beaches.

The tenor of the criticism peaked after the murder by poachers May 31, 2013, of Jairo Mora Sandoval a Caribbean coast turtle protector.

Still the Fuerza Pública and judicial investigators make countless arrests of egg thieves and turtle butchers.

Not widely know is that members of the Fuerza Pública have taken it on themselves to maintain a turtle incubation site at Jacó. Officials said that Oswaldo Rodríguez, the subdirector of the police agency there, was mainly responsible.

Olive ridley sea turtles have been arriving at the pacific beaches since July, and Rodríguez and other volunteers have been busy rescuing turtle eggs and placing them in the protected sanctuary.  This turtle is considered critically endangered.

Some 408 turtles have hatched already at the nursery, said the security ministry in praising the work its employees do on their free time.

The volunteers snatch the eggs as soon as they have been laid to protect them. The beaches have heavy traffic and even roaming dogs are a threat to the eggs. They are placed in duplicate sand nests inside the sanctuary.

The security ministry transferred Rodríguez to the Garabito area two years ago. That is when he started his work with turtles.
turtle at night
Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y Seguridad Pública photo
Police officer awaits the exit of a turtle mother who is depositing eggs in a nest that might be in a high-traffic area.

Agents raid three locations they say are houses of prostitution
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

For some reason, judicial agents cracked down on three prostitution operations Tuesday afternoon and detained five men and a woman.

The agents found some 70 women working as prostitutes in the three locations, said the Judicial Investigating Organization.

The judicial agent said that the three locations were listed as pensiones, a Spanish term for a smaller hotel. Nearly every prostitution operation in the city is licensed as a pension and they contain private rooms for renting.

The three raids may have been prompted by reports that minors were working in the locations. Agents said they did find one 17 year old working as a prostitute. That is a serious offense.

The action came from agents in the Sección de Delitos Contra La Integridad Física, Trata y Tráfico de Personas. All the raids took place in the center of San Jose.

Prostitution is not penalized in Costa Rica, but pimping is illegal. In 
nearly every prostitution operation that characterizes itself as a pension, there is someone in charge who takes money and arranges the delivery of prostitutes to a room. In fact, this goes on at most strip clubs, too.

Many prostitutes say they prefer working in such establishment for security and to remain anonymous. There also are clearly established working hours.

Periodically, judicial agents, municipal police or tax police conduct raids of a few prostitution operations. One major raid resulted in the operators being fined only for not having access for the disabled.

The bulk of the women located at work during the raids were Nicaraguans or Costa Ricans along with a few Dominicans, the judicial agency said.

The location of these prostitution operations in San José are not secret. Some announced their presence with flashing Christmas lights.

In fact, one expat has posted a detailed map and narrative that lists and evaluates perhaps two dozen such prostitution operations in the center of the city.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 185
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Ancient DNA shows three, not two, ancestors for modern Europeans
By the Harvard Medical School news staff

The setting: Europe, about 7,500 years ago. Agriculture was sweeping in from the Near East, bringing early farmers into contact with hunter-gatherers who had already been living in Europe for tens of thousands of years.

Genetic and archaeological research in the last 10 years has revealed that almost all present-day Europeans descend from the mixing of these two ancient populations. But it turns out that’s not the full story.

Researchers at Harvard Medical School and the University of Tübingen in Germany have now documented a genetic contribution from a third ancestor: Ancient North Eurasians. This group appears to have contributed DNA to present-day Europeans as well as to the people who travelled across the Bering Strait into the Americas more than 15,000 years ago.

“Prior to this paper, the models we had for European ancestry were two-way mixtures. We show that there are three groups,” said David Reich, professor of genetics at Harvard and co-senior author of the study.

“This also explains the recently discovered genetic connection between Europeans and Native Americans,” Reich added. “The same ancient North Eurasian group contributed to both of them.”

The research team also discovered that ancient Near Eastern farmers and their European descendants can trace much of their ancestry to a previously unknown, even older lineage called the Basal Eurasians. The study was published online Sept. 17 in Nature.

To probe the ongoing mystery of Europeans’ heritage and their relationships to the rest of the world, the international research team — including co-senior author Johannes Krause, professor of archaeo- and paleogenetics at the University of Tübingen and co-director of the new Max Planck Institute for History and the Sciences in Jena, Germany — collected and sequenced the DNA of more than 2,300 present-day people from around the world and of nine ancient humans from Sweden, Luxembourg and Germany.

The ancient bones came from eight hunter-gatherers who lived about 8,000 years ago, before the arrival of farming, and one farmer from about 7,000 years ago.

The researchers also incorporated into their study genetic sequences previously gathered from ancient humans of the same time period, including early farmers such as Ötzi the Iceman.

Joanna Drath/University of Tübingen
This skull of a 7,000-year-old German farmer was among the ancient human bones that revealed more about the genetic heritage of present-day Europeans.
“There was a sharp genetic transition between the hunter-gatherers and the farmers, reflecting a major movement of new people into Europe from the Near East,” said Reich.

Ancient North Eurasian DNA wasn’t found in either the hunter-gatherers or the early farmers, suggesting the Ancient North Eurasians arrived in the area later, he said.

“Nearly all Europeans have ancestry from all three ancestral groups,” said Iosif Lazaridis, a research fellow in genetics in Reich’s lab and first author of the paper. “Differences between them are due to the relative proportions of ancestry. Northern Europeans have more hunter-gatherer ancestry — up to about 50 percent in Lithuanians — and Southern Europeans have more farmer ancestry.”

Lazaridis added, “The ancient North Eurasian ancestry is proportionally the smallest component everywhere in Europe, never more than 20 percent, but we find it in nearly every European group we’ve studied and also in populations from the Caucasus and Near East. A profound transformation must have taken place in West Eurasia” after farming arrived.

When this research was conducted, ancient North Eurasians were a ghost population — an ancient group known only through the traces it left in the DNA of present-day people. Then, in January, a separate group of archaeologists found the physical remains of two ancient North Eurasians in Siberia. Now, said Reich, “We can study how they’re related to other populations.”

The team was able to go only so far in its analysis because of the limited number of ancient DNA samples. Reich thinks there could easily be more than three ancient groups who contributed to today’s European genetic profile.

He and his colleagues found that the three-way model doesn’t tell the whole story for certain regions of Europe. Mediterranean groups such as the Maltese, as well as Ashkenazi Jews, had more Near East ancestry than anticipated, while far northeastern Europeans such as Finns and the Saami, as well as some northern Russians, had more East Asian ancestry in the mix.

The most surprising part of the project for Reich, however, was the discovery of the Basal Eurasians.

“This deep lineage of non-African ancestry branched off before all the other non-Africans branched off from one another,” he said. “Before Australian Aborigines and New Guineans and South Indians and Native Americans and other indigenous hunter-gatherers split, they split from Basal Eurasians. This reconciled some contradictory pieces of information for us.”

Next, the team wants to figure out when the Ancient North Eurasians arrived in Europe and to find ancient DNA from the Basal Eurasians.

“We are only starting to understand the complex genetic relationship of our ancestors,” said co-author Krause. “Only more genetic data from ancient human remains will allow us to disentangle our prehistoric past.”

“There are important open questions about how the present-day people of the world got to where they are,” said Reich. “The traditional way geneticists study this is by analyzing present-day people, but this is very hard because present-day people reflect many layers of mixture and migration.

“Ancient DNA sequencing is a powerful technology that allows you to go back to the places and periods where important demographic events occurred,” he said. “It’s a great new opportunity to learn about human history.”

Vacation, travel and hospitality

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
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   * Informative two-day seminar given by local experts in their
          relevant fields.
   * Tours led by Christopher Howard, 34-year resident, citizen,
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Click HERE  to learn all about our Association of Residents (ARCR)  approved tours at

Anywhere Costa Rica plans custom vacations, and has the most comprehensive travel services in the country including travel guides, resorts and vacation homesCosta Rica tours
and car rentals.  
Call 1-888.456.3212 or 2479-8811 locally.

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.

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.


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

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Organic farm home
$800 plus utilities.
Two-bedroom, two-bath house, fully furnished, Internet included, cable TV available. Inside organic farm, safe and secure. In the country but close to town. Santa Bárbara de Heredia, Email for more info and pictures. Long term, NO DOGS.

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 Interamerica highway. 3,200 ft. elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 baths, frig, dishwasher, washer, dryer, TV, DVD player, high-speed internet, direct TV via sling box on Internet. rent is $750 plus electricity & water. free Internet. Prefer 3 months or more. Available Nov. 1. Contact   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.

MONTHLY $800 TO $1,200

Villas Casa Loma has everything you are looking for.  Best vistas, climate, value.  Four unique homes in a secure private compound on a ridge near Alajuela overlooking the entire Central Valley.  Two are available fully furnished and equipped, each a complete home accommodating 4 persons in two bedrooms with ensuite baths.  Pool, rancho, mirador, other features.  Ask about part-month rates.  Call Gerry at (506) 2441-8796 or e-mail at  See virtual tour of accommodations HERE!
Get to know the real Costa Rica – you may want to live here someday.

HP Cattle rentals
Mountain homes or farm for rent
Barva volcano, Heredia province
We offer for rent a gorgeous two-bedroom mountain chalet and a one-bedroom mountain home located on the slopes of the Barva Volcano, Heredia Province. The homes are situated at 7,300 feet altitude and within a working horse ranch just three kilometers from the Braulio Carrillo National Park entrance. From our homes one can hike to the Barva volcano crater-lake.  Enjoy a spacious living room, kitchen, fireplace and breathtaking views of the Irazú volcano and the Central Valley. Observe dozens of cloud forest bird species to include the resplendent quetzal.  The homes are incomparable in beauty and attention to detail within the Barva highland area.  We are only 35-55 minutes from Costa Rica’s three principal cities (Heredia, Alajuela, and San José), less than two hours from the central Pacific beaches, and three hours from the Caribbean beaches. Enjoy the tranquility of the mountains while maintaining quick access to the conveniences of the city and rapid access to other eco-tourist destinations in Costa Rica. Additionally, we can board your horses at a reasonable fee.  We can also offer our clients rental of a small and fully functional farm complete with stables, pasture, and office space.
Mountain chalet: $750.  Basic mountain home: $400.
Boutique mountain home: One-bedroom $850. Two-bedroom $1,000.
Small Farm that includes a chalet, basic mountain home, stables, and 8,000m2 of pasture/green areas: $1,500.

Apartments Lemur
Apartment Lemur for rent
San Francisco de Dos Rios, El Bosque, furnished, 2-bedroom, 1-bath apartment, quiet area, free cable TV, WiFi. large patio area, swimming pool, parking, security. Close to San José. $440/month. Retired persons preferred. Call 8375-6838.

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. 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.
apartment view
 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:

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A.M. Costa Rica's   Fifth news page

cat trees
San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 185
Real Estate
About us

Scots go to the polls today
with both sides optimistic

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The mood is tense on the streets of Scotland’s biggest city, Glasgow, less than 24 hours ahead of the referendum on independence with both sides optimistic of victory.

At a packed pub in Glasgow’s West End, the punters are discussing an unusual topic: politics.

So far the opinion polls are neck-and-neck, although some have questioned whether the results are being skewed by no voters unwilling to reveal their decision publicly, and yes supporters who don’t normally vote.

Arlene Moffat is having a quiet drink with a friend. She says she’s voting “a definite no.”

"Stronger together, historically. Financially, the military, business-wise, pensions. We want to keep the pound, we don’t want the euro. We like the national anthem, everything," Ms. Moffat said, adding that she hopes the yes votes will see sense and change their minds at the last minute.

Across the room sits a musician named Neil, who is originally from Newcastle, but now lives in Glasgow. It’s clear from the array of yes badges he’s wearing, which side he will be voting for on Thursday.

He says he is concerned by the coverage of the referendum in the mainstream media, which he believes has been biased against independence.

Social media has been a major driver of the pro-independence campaign, which some say favors younger voters, while supporters of the union tend to be older and wealthier.

Outside the pub in Glasgow, taxi driver Brian said eight out of 10 people in his cab said they are
voting yes.

But the same eight people think that it’s going to be a no victory. They are thinking every other person is voting no.

"My wife’s a no. I’m a yes. It’s like that. My neighbor’s a no . . . . It goes right down the middle and everyone has their own reasons," Brian said.

Alistair Darling, a former British finance minister and leader of the Better Together campaign said independence would be an irreversible decision that would bring economic doom and gloom.

Pro-union political leaders signed a joint pledge promising greater powers for Scotland in the event of a no vote, but many are skeptical these would actually be delivered.

The race to persuade undecided voters will continue until the polls close Thursday night.

The latest surveys indicate 48 percent of Scots are likely to vote yes for independence, compared to a 52 percent majority rejecting the bid to break away from London's rule.

The polls have also found 8 to 14 percent of Scotland's 4.3 million voters are still undecided.

Speaking to Sky News, British Prime Minister David Cameron said he is nervous, but confident that Scots will say no.

“…Everyone who cares about our United Kingdom, and I care passionately about our United Kingdom, is nervous, but I am confident that we have set out how Scotland can have the best of both worlds, a successful economy with a growing number of jobs that we have seen today, the Scottish unemployment rate at six percent is actually lower than the unemployment rate in London, and shows what a success the Scottish economy is," he said.  "So, the success of that, but combined with the ability of Scots if they vote no to have even more powers and even more say over how to run their own affairs in Scotland."

U.S. attorney in Minnesota
tracking would-be jihadists

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Authorities are investigating men and women they believe have left the northern U.S. state of Minnesota to fight alongside extremists in Syria.

The U.S. Attorney for Minnesota, Andrew Luger, would not specify the number of individuals under scrutiny, but he said they represent a wide variety of backgrounds.

Luger said many of these young people are disenfranchised from their families and communities, and they have lost hope in their own future. He said they are responding to jihadists online efforts to recruit them.

Lugar said authorities also are looking for people in the United States who are assisting the young people in leaving the country.

Luger said a young person who has not traveled outside the United States is not going out to get a passport and then book an international flight to the Middle East without help.

He also said recruiters for extremist groups are very clever in their appeals to young people in the United States. Luger said America needs to create a better online messaging campaign to counter the message of the bad guys.

Police sweep in Australia
said to stifle murder threat

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott says a massive anti-terrorism raid was prompted by an Islamic State figure who has ordered demonstration killings in Australia.

Prime Minister Abbott said Thursday the order came from an Australian who is apparently quite senior in the extremist group, which controls large parts of Syria and Iraq.

Australian media say court documents later Thursday will reveal the militants planned to abduct a random Australian, wrap the victim in an Islamic State flag, and behead him.

The revelations came after about 800 Australian police officers carried out pre-dawn raids in Sydney, Brisbane, and Logan, arresting 15 people. At least one has been charged with a terrorism-related offense.

Australia recently elevated its terror warning amid threats by Islamic State fighters, who have already carried out video-taped beheadings of three Westerners.

Federal Police Chief Andrew Colvin told reporters the group targeted by the raids "had started to carry out planning to commit violent acts here in Australia."

"These violent acts particularly related to random acts against members of the public. So what we saw today and the operation that continues was very much about police disrupting the potential for violence against the Australian community at the earliest possible opportunity," said Colvin.

Last week, Australian police arrested two men in Brisbane suspected of preparing to fight in Syria, recruiting militants and raising money for the al-Qaida-affiliated al-Nusra Front.

U.S. Fed will hold rate
for considerable time

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The U.S. central bank says it expects to end its direct support of the American economy next month, but still maintain its record-low benchmark interest rate for a considerable time until economic conditions improve more.

Policy makers at the Federal Reserve Wednesday said the U.S. economy, the world's largest, is still advancing at a moderate pace. But they said the country's labor market, which added a disappointing 142,000 jobs in August, is not improving as fast as it could.

The Fed, after a two-day meeting in Washington, cut another $10 billion in the size of the monthly asset purchases it has been making for nearly two years in an effort to boost the country's recovery from the severe recession in 2008 and 2009. The policy makers said that if the country's economic advance continues in the coming weeks, they expect to end their last $15 billion in monthly asset purchases at their next meeting in late October.

Fed Chairwoman Janet Yellen said the economic downturn, the country's worst in seven decades, continues to play a role in U.S. economic fortunes.

"Many cite the residual effects of the financial crisis, which although slowly diminishing, are likely to continue to restrain household spending, constrain credit availability, and depress expectations for future growth in output and incomes," she said.

At the same time, the policy makers said they will keep their benchmark interest rate at zero to a quarter of a percentage point for a considerable period after that, especially if inflation in the U.S. continues to run below the 2 percent target set by the Federal Reserve.

Ms. Yellen has suggested that the central bank may not increase the interest rate until mid-2015. The Fed's benchmark rate directly influences interest rates that businesses and consumers are charged to borrow money.

Economic growth in the U.S. has been uneven this year, with a 2.1 percent contraction in the first quarter and 4.2 percent growth in the April-to-June period.

The Fed is predicting a 2 to 2.2 percent advance for all of 2014, and a 2.6 to 3 percent gain next year. Even so, the 2015 projection is down from an earlier central bank forecast.

The path to a rate increase is hugely important for investors. In June, the median of the Fed's projections suggested rates would reach 1.125 percent by the end of next year, more than a quarter point higher than futures markets have priced in.

Fear expressed that ebola
could spread through air

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

As the ebola epidemic continues to spread unchecked in western Africa, fears are beginning to emerge that the virus could mutate and the disease could become airborne. Some experts say the chances are remote, though, that ebola could spread from person-to-person through the air.

The number of people infected with ebola has soared in Liberia, Sierra Leone, Guinea, Nigeria and Senegal with more than half of the estimated 4,300 cases resulting in death. Some infectious disease specialists have expressed concern the disease could acquire a new, more terrifying mode of transmission — through inhalation, much like the common flu bug.

People become infected with ebola by coming into contact with the contaminated bodily fluids, primarily blood and saliva, of infected individuals.

In a New York Times opinion piece, biosecurity expert Michael T. Osterholm noted that viruses like ebola are notoriously sloppy in replicating, which means that each new infection presents the possibility of trillions of genetic changes. Genetic mutations to bacteria and viruses are common. They are the result of small mistakes that occur in the DNA of a microbe in the course of replicating.

But rarely, said Anthony Fauci, does a virus mutate to the point that it changes how it spreads from person to person.

In testimony Wednesday before a U.S. Congressional committee hearing on ebola, Fauci, the head of the U.S. Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, commented on that possibility.

“It generally, if it changes a function, modifies an already-existing function, it makes it either a bit more virulent or a bit less virulent. It makes it a little more efficient in the way that it spreads or a little less efficient,” he said

Having said that, he warned the longer the ebola epidemic continues in Africa, the greater the chance the virus will acquire mutations.

“If this virus keeps replicating and keeps infecting more and more people, you are going to give it a chance to mutate. So, the way you can take that off the table is to actually shut down this epidemic,” Fauci said.

Experimental drugs have been used in some cases to treat Ebola patients, but care is mostly supportive. In the absence of a cure, efforts continue to try to contain the virus through quarantine, limiting travel to other countries and public curfews.

The United States is sending 3,000 troops to Liberia, the nation worst hit by Ebola, to help with training medical workers, coordinating supplies and building new treatment facilities. Other countries are donating medical supplies to try to contain what one public health official called a ferocious epidemic.

Kent Brantly, an American missionary doctor who survived the ebola virus, told a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee on Wednesday "The longer we wait, the greater the cost of the battle, both in dollars and lives."

The panel on Africa, Global Health, Global Human Rights and International Organizations met to hear how experts at various U.S. public health agencies think the virus can be contained, although one panelist described it as "ferocious and spreading rapidly." 

One of the experts warned that ebola could last for years and spread to many more countries in Africa if it is not controlled quickly.

Fauci also noted that a 13th volunteer received the ebola vaccine Wednesday, and so far the trials are going well. He said the ZMapp therapeutic treatment that Brantly and others have received still needs to be evaluated to determine how well it works.

Those testifying emphasized the urgency of getting aid to the West African countries experiencing the Ebola outbreak, and that improving the medical structure in these countries is critical to saving lives.

Water collector mimics
actions of shorebirds

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A simple device, inspired by the beaks of shorebirds, can harvest drops of water from fog and dew. Its developers say it could help drought-prone communities around the world meet their need for drinkable water.

A University of Texas at Arlington engineering professor, Cheng Luo, and his doctoral student, Xin Heng, came up with their design after noting how long-billed shorebirds with thin beaks get water.

Birds like sandpipers and stilts push liquid back into their throats by opening and closing their beaks. So the researchers hinged two rectangular glass plates together. When the collector is open, it provides a large surface area where beads of fog can condense. As it closes, the water drops slide into a collection tube near the hinge.

Writing in the American Chemical Society journal ACS Applied Materials & Interfaces, Luo reports that a single 25-by-10 centimeter prototype harvested about 15 milliliters of water in a half hour.

Over a two-hour span, it gathered 400 to 900 times more liquid than any other natural or artificial fog-collector.
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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.

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Lake Arenal, Costa Rica
The undiscovered jewel of Central America, 35 square miles of blue, pristine, clear water ideal for fishing, swimming, boating, Real estate values still low.
Great lake front, river front land, farms, homes, condos and commercial property. Some with owner financing
This is far and away the most beautiful place in all Central America — cool climate. Try our two-day, all-inclusive discovery tour for $299.

Check with our Web site at
Contact us at the office: (506) 2694-0088
Cell (506) 8880-8888
Phone number from the U.S. (305) 307-0088
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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  
English calls :  (Luis David) Phone: 
(506) 8331-5228

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
house 865
Beautiful chalet in Grecia, with the best fresh natural weather, 1.040 m2 of land, Price $135.000. Click HERE!
House 868
Beautiful house  in Grecia, with the best fresh natural weather, 810 m2 of land, Price $178.000. Click HERE!
House 866
Beautiful large house  in Grecia, with the best fresh natural weather,1.006 m2 of land, Price $290.000.  HERE!
  Send us your request to our email:

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Cariari luxury condo for sale
This is not an ordinary condo.
Completed one year ago, a $45,000 renovating made it an exquisite dwelling. As soon as you walk in you know it is a special home. No detail has been overlooked, even minuscule ones. The owner has a need to move on, and someone lucky will be the beneficiary of the fine detailed work. The home itself has three bedrooms, two and half bathrooms plus a maid’s quarters with its own bathroom. Also, it has a living room, dining room and a gorgeous kitchen with a kitchenette. There’s also a small outdoor patio. Being the end unit of this four-home condo complex, there’s parking space for three vehicles.  Approximately 240 sq. meters. All this near the Cariari Golf and Country Club and its renowned Tom Facio golf course. The club also has amenities such as a fitness centre, exercise room, Olympic swimming pool, sauna, 12 tennis courts and many other benefits. Tel:  8384-9608 or 2293-9054  Price $214,500.

Two lovely homes 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.

house photo
More photos HERE!
Another 'live in the view' home in Puriscal
$179,900 includes:
Lot on river, concrete road, custom kitchen & bath with granite counter tops, PEX plumbing, 2” Styrofoam, sandwiched in steel roof, 4” concrete/recycled Styrofoam & steel walls, laminated, bronzed windows, custom wood doors, appliances and all transfer taxes, and fees.

2, 900 sq feet under roof, 1,250 sq feet inside walls, 2 bedroom, 2 ½ baths, laundry room, three separate patio areas, covered carport, shade trees, in upscale, secure project.  This project has river with protected areas & walkways. It is only 10 minutes on all paved roads to Santiago de Puriscal, 45 minutes to La Plaza Mall/Hospital CIMA and SJO airport, and 1 ½ hours to Pacific Beaches. It has recently upgraded public water supply and dependable ICE electric and high-speed internet.
Please come visit our projects and meet four new homeowners who have recently moved into their new “live in the view” homes to verify how happy they are and that they all came in under budget. CONTACT: George Lundquist  Home phone: 2417-1041 Cell phone: 8888 4543 Skype glundquist.
To see more Photos of this house, click HERE!

Beautiful home and separate apartment
The land is 289 square meters with  329 square meters of construction. Three bedrooms, 3.5 bathrooms, 2 floors, covered parking, with room for  a second parking space. A first floor patio and a second floor balcony with view. Attached apartment rented for $500 per month. Live free. House valued, @ $330,000. asking price with agents is $295,000. With no agent, asking $279,000, negotiable. Must see to appreciate,  Contact: Wayne Winstead,, 8820-1501/8379-7947

Farm montage

Guanacaste, Liberia Farm
$64,000 NEGOTIABLE and owner financing available.
9 hectares (24 acres). Riverfront property and amazing views of 3 volcanoes.


Beach Front Home - Central Pacific Coast
Pristine condition, recently renovated. The best surfing and boogie boarding in the country. The most magnificent ocean and sunset view. New 20-year, fully registered concession on one of the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. Easy access from San José (1 hour 25 minutes) located between Jacó and Manuel Antonio, in Esterillos Oeste.  2 or 3 bedrooms. Center room can be living room. House with 2 1/2 baths. Separated rancho with kitchen and large entertainment patio. Landscaped garden with no water shortage. Has both municipal and well water with automatic watering system. Direct access to the beach as no road is in front of property. Protected land on one side of the property for additional privacy.  Alarm system and complete shutters for security while away. Lot approximately 1,725 square meters, Asking price: $385.000.  Contact to Paul at local phone 506- 2637-8858  Cell phone 506- 8823-8550 .  US Mobile 908-400-9772  Emails:  and

New 5,000-sq. ft. home in the middle of coffee plantation
Four bedrooms and five baths. Superb mountain views and privacy. 3.3-acre property on top of mountain. 15 minutes from local shopping. One hour from all San José has to offer. Two hours from the beaches and attractions at Quepos. Balconies for each bedroom, two large decks with stunning mountain views, octagonal gazebo, extensive rock walls and landscaping. Surrounded by trees. New home never lived in. Very quiet mountain location in exclusive coffee farm area. Two-story open dining and living room with guest bath. Spiral staircase leads to common area for parties, etc. Has room with bar and another spiral staircase leads to the skydeck. This is a balcony high up above the house that has extensive mountain views. All ceilings are wood accented with large beams. Balconies are tile and the decks are stained teak. Decks have balustrades. The second floor balcony and common area have custom wrought iron. All services available from satellite Sky TV, to high-speed Internet. All block and steel construction. Many hiking trails and rainforest zone a few miles away. If nature, quiet life and privacy is your thing, this could be for you. Juan Santamaria SJO Airport 1 hour 15 minutes away. $470,000. Picture gallery emailed on request to serious inquiries. Contact Jim Alfaro,   Cell 8714-8274.


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 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.

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Gorgeous 2-bedroom, 2-bath condo with private terrace offering spectacular ocean views and built energy green. This condo is located in a gated community with low HOA dues and offers amenities including a pool & rancho.  It is located close to a beautiful white, sandy beach. Only 20 minutes to the resort town Tamarindo and an hour from Liberia airport.  Luxury finishings: Pella double pane windows, AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire stainless steel appliances, granite countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom cabinets. Contact or email 
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Casa de Eden is  2,600 square feet with 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath, outdoor shower, private outdoor terrace and pool located only minutes from Playa Conchal.  The home is in a private, secure, gated community surrounded by nature and close to the resort town of Tamarindo, only an hour from Liberia airport.  The home is being offered fully furnished with: AC & ceiling fans, Frigidaire Professional series stainless steel appliances, granite kitchen countertops, marble bathroom vanities, custom wood cabinetry, internet, cable. 
Contact  U.S. (732) 984-7549
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Call center for rent ready to go !
13 work stations, good equipment, good location, Rohrmoser, two blocks from Plaza Mayor. $4.000 per month. Call Kevin 8366-6861.

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A.M. Costa Rica's
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San José, Costa Rica, Thursday, Sept. 18, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 185
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News from the BBC up to the minute

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Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Ministerio de Gobernación, Policía y Seguridad Pública photo 
An officer with the Policía de Control de Drogas chops at one of 88,825 plants he and colleagues have destroyed at 26 sites in Cerro Danta, Sinaí, Palmar Norte, Finca La Muñeca, Altos de Altamira, Hatillo, Aguirre y Chacarita in the southern part of the country this month.

Judge bans magazine to protect governor

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

A court in Brazil is censoring the magazine IstoÉ and ordering it to withdraw its weekly publication from the market for having reported on a case of corruption in the public administration.

Judge Maria Marleide Maciel Queiroz of Fortaleza in Ceará state Monday ordered IstoÉ, one of the country’s most prestigious magazines, to pull this week’s issue and a report on its Web site. The court order responds to a lawsuit alleging libel, defamation and moral harm filed by Ceará State Gov. Cid Gomes, who claimed to be offended by a report in which he was linked to corrupt activities by Brazilian oil company Petrobras.

The Inter American Press Association condemned the court action. The chairman of the association's Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information, Claudio Paolillo, protested “the frequency with which  Brazilian judges protect public officials in detriment to the news media and especially against the constitutional guarantee allowing all Brazilians to enjoy their right to freely receive and disseminate information.”

Paolillo, editor of the Montevideo, Uruguay weekly, Búsqueda, said, “Public officials are subject to greater scrutiny by the people.”

“It is for the news media to exercise their watchdog role and for judges to guarantee that democratic value,” he said.

Gomes sued IstoÉ after journalists with that magazine sent him an e-mail asking for his reaction to statements in court made by the former head of Petrobas, Paulo Roberto Costa, who linked him to a list of authorities who allegedly participated in influence-peddling and bribery. Costa’s disclosure comes on the heels of a confession which enables him to obtain a reduced sentence.

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From Page 7:

Efficiency, cost reduction are topics of seminar

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Cámara de Industrias plans a seminar today to help business leaders consider their options in the fact of increases in the cost of production.

The chamber said that in the last 19 months more than 6,000 employees lost their jobs as firms took steps to reduce expenses.

The session today is an all-day affair at the Hotel Radisson. The emphasis will be on new technologies that can save firms money and make them more efficient, said an announcement. Among these are digital technologies and the internet of things, according to the announcement.

There also is a session on gaining strategic intelligences for various markets.