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Published Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, in Vol. 17, No. 194
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Even chief prosecutor says criminal courts are a mess
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Many have launched criticisms of the country’s judicial system. Now the fiscal general, the nation’s top policeman has said the problem is the inconsistencies in the criminal policies that have been put into place in the country and have saturated the justice system so as to guarantee that the cases are delayed a long time.

The fiscal general, Jorge Chavarría Guzmán, issued this indictment by way of an excuse when he was grilled by lawmakers Thursday.

The lawmakers have been asking the same question as Costa Rican citizens and expats: Where are the court cases stemming from the so called La Trocha, the scandal-ridden Ruta 1856 along the south bank of the Río San Juan.

The investigation started as a corruption probe in 2012, and in February 2015 prosecutors said that 16 more suspects had been added to the case, bringing the total to 42.  Chavarría said Thursday the number of suspects was 40.

Chavarría included in his statement a request to create a special unit to investigate corruption. Chavarría is generally considered ineffective, and this may be why he was named by the Corte Suprema de Justicia to a second term. He heads the Ministerio Público, the independent prosecutorial agency.

Mario Redondo Poveda is chairman of the  Comisión Permanente Especial de Control de  Ingreso y Gasto Público before which the chief prosecutor spoke. Redondo said that he is preoccupied by the feeling of impunity that is felt in the country. Another lawmaker,  Julio Rojas Astorga, said he was disturbed that courts are inventing judicial doctrine and procedures.

Chavarría called for a reform of the criminal code, the anti-corruption laws and the code of criminal procedures.


The controversial highway was built along the Nicaraguan border during the Laura Chinchilla administration. The road was a rush job in the face of territorial invasions by Nicaragua.

The roadway also is called the Carretera Juan Rafael Mora Porras after the president who led the country to take up arms against the U.S. filibusterer William Walker in 1856 and 1857.

The public employees being investigated are accused of failing to supervise the work that was taking place and colluding with contractors to obtain money that was not earned.

Contractors are accused of double billing for machinery. There might even have been billing for work by machinery that did not exist.

Eventually the Ministerio de Obras Públicas y Transportes took over the work. The project is considered an example of how not to do a public work.

Now the roadway has fallen into disuse, and some of the small bridges are down. They were shoddy to begin with, sometimes made by piling dirt over empty shipping containers or by using tree trunks.

The roadway was supposed to open up the northeastern section of Costa Rica to the modern world and provide quicker access to land coveted by Nicaragua.

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 194
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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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Walkout termed an independent action

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The decision by Costa Rica’s leaders to walk out on a speech at the United Nations by the new president of Brazil was an independent decision, said 
Manuel González Sáenz.
Manuel González Sáenz. He was one of three persons from Costa Rica to walk out, and he discussed the decision before the full legislature Thursday. He is minister of  Relaciones Exteriores y Culto.

Lawmakers became upset because representatives of other countries to walk out were from Ecuador, Venezuela, Nicaragua, Bolivia and Cuba, all headed by leftist regimes.

The walkout took place Sept. 20, a Tuesday. 

González said that President Luis Guillermo Solís decided the Sunday before to leave when Michael Temer, president of Brazil, began to speak.  The president’s wife, Mercedes Peñas, also walked out.

In Brazil, leftist president Dilma Rousseff  was
removed from office by the congress. Temer, the the vice president, took over.

González told lawmakers that the action did not violate any of the country’s fundamental principles that determine the foreign policy of the country.

He also said that despite the walkout in the company of the other countries, Costa Rica has no interest in aligning itself with the ALBA alliance set up by Venezuela and Cuba in 2004. That is the Alianza Bolivariana para los Pueblos de Nuestra América, which then-president Hugo Chavez of Venezula saw as a competitor to U.S. interests in the region.

The sky show that is invisible to Earth

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Tonight there is a sky phenomenon that those in the Americas will not see.

This is the second new moon of the month, frequently called a black moon. The new moon usually happens once a month when the moon is between the earth and the sun and the moon sort of turns its back on the Earth. All the sunlight falling on the moon is reflected in other directions.

Despite the published hype, a close look will see the moon because the back side will be illuminated by earthlight, that is the suns rays reflected off the Earth to the moon and back again.

So the black moon is probably nothing to get excited about even though there has not been two new moons in a month since 2014. The next month with two new moons is in 2019.

But there is a way to take advantage. Everyone who looks at the stars knows that a rising moon can wipe out a lot of the celestial beauty. Well, the new moon is up there all night, which means the stars can be seen better.

Body turns up in Curridabat suitcase

By the A.M. Costa  Rica staff

Someone stuffed the body of a man into a large suitcase and left it in his living quarters in Curridabat.

Judicial investigators identified the presumed victim as a 25-year-old Jamaican man with the last name of  Rohan. They said a friend visited the home and could not locate the occupant.

The friend called the Fuerza Pública, and officers entered the living quarters to find the suitcase apparently packed for transport. When they opened it, they found the body, they said.

The cause of death has not been determined, but judicial investigators are treating the case as a murder.

Woman confesses to baby’s murder

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A 19-year-old young mother walked into the Bananito police station Wednesday night and announced that she had just thrown her newborn into the nearby Río Bananito.

Eventually police and rescue workers found the young body later that night, and the woman was remanded to Hospital Tony Facio in Limón for evaluation.

The woman has an 11 month old at home, and the dead baby was about 24 days old, police said.

States sue to stop internet giveaway

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Attorneys general from four U.S. states have filed a lawsuit to stop the Obama administration from handing over control of the internet to an international governing body.

The White House had planned to officially hand the reins of the internet address system over to a group of international stakeholders Saturday, but the states’ fears the move could be unconstitutional threatens to block one of Obama’s top tech initiatives.

The attorneys general for Arizona, Oklahoma, Nevada and Texas all signed on to the lawsuit this week that argues the Obama plan to hand over control of the internet in an illegal transfer of U.S. government property, and any such giveaway would require congressional approval.

The Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) is a non-profit group that handles oversight of internet domain names. Since its creation in 1998, ICANN has been under the control of the U.S. Department of Commerce, but the Obama administration began plans in early 2014 to relinquish that control, with the process coming to completion Friday.

Time to register to vote

The U.S. Federal government’s overseas voting agency has issued a reminder that Nov. 8 is the presidential election.

“It is time for Americans living, working or traveling abroad to take steps to vote,” said the agency,” the Federal Overseas Voting Program.

Helping overseas Americans is difficult because each state has its own rule, and expats are supposed to vote in the U.S. state where they last were a resident.

Many overseas voters will receive absentee ballots from their registered county of residency. Others may elect to file a federal absentee ballot just for federal offices.

In addition to the federal program, the Overseas Voting Foundation can assist voters. The Web site gives deadlines for each state, plus other information.

News from the Spanish-language press
Translated into English

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 194
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There always is something at least interesting if not wacky here
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Costa Rica is not a place where boredom is on the agenda.

Sure, those travel ads promote the country as a place where someone can stretch out unconcerned on a deck chair at the beach and sip mystery drinks from one of those glasses sporting a little umbrella.

In fact, there is always activity, sometimes wacky, all over.

Earlier this month there were men and woman running into traffic naked. Their inclusion on the undressed list gave television stations and some of the Spanish-language press a field day with large photos. The intimate areas were courteously blurred.

The nakedness was blamed on mental states brought on by ingestion of K-E or spice, a particularly powerful drug. As some expats know, hard drink can have the same effect.

But in a stretch of 24 hours there were other unusual events.

For starters, the Turriabla volcano continues its third full day of steady eruption. That is great for photographers and tourists, but not so good for those living to the north and west who are getting a perpetual shower of ash.

Even the rivers are turning gray in some areas.

Down on Avenida Segunda in the capital an agile but perhaps confused man mounted a utility pole Thursday and drew the attention of police. That caused a massive jam on the key street which really is part of the Interamericana. Eventually police brought down the man and sent him for an examination. He probably already is planning a repeat performance.

Then there is the young mother who was resting comfortably in Hospital San Juan de Dios. The very pregnant woman,

Observatorio Vulcanológico y Sismológico de Costa Rica photo
There is nothing boring about the Turrialba volcano.

already the mother of three, felt abdominal pains in her home in Estero de Puriscal Wednesday night. So she decided to hike to the local clinic less than a kilometer away.

That was too far. The woman ended up giving birth to a boy on the public right-of-way.

Then Thursday night, the Heredia-San José train derailed inconveniencing a rush hour crowd of passengers. But maybe this is short of unusual.

To top off the list of unusual events, Thursday was one of those glorious, sunny days more typical of January or February. There were strong winds that have kept the storm clouds at bay.

And the good news is that the weather experts say that the great weather will last through the weekend.

Existing water safety system already saved 300 in 2016, ICT says
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

There are about 300 deaths that never made the newspapers and television because they did not happen.

That is the number of water rescues made already this year by the Cruz Roja and other public service entities that are working with the Instituto Costarricensese de Turismo, according to Víctor Ramírez, a tourism institute employee.

He and the general manager, Alberto López, appeared Thursday before the Comisión Permanente Especial de Turismo, at the legislature.

On the table was a bill, No.  20.043, that seeks to provide mandatory protection to locals and tourists who swim at the country’s beaches. The bill orders municipalities to use some of

the money raised from maritime zone concessions to pay for a life guard corps.

The summary of the bill says that between the year 2000 and 2014 some 840 persons, an average of 60 a year, died here from drowning. Some 37 percent were foreigners, mainly tourists.

The legislature estimates that less than 1 percent of  the country’s beaches have that protection. There are about 600 beaches suitable for bathing.

The rip tides are blamed for the rate of water deaths that is higher than the United States or even Australia, said the summary of the bill.

The bill also would create a Comisión Nacional de Salvavidas to oversee funding and maintain standards for life guards.

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A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page

San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 194
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Congressional actions are getting the blame for high U.S. drug prices
By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Lawmakers are venting over high prescription drug costs, but if Congress is looking for culprits, it might want to look in the mirror.

Republican- and Democratic-controlled congresses and presidents of both parties may have set the stage for the startling price increases that have consumers on edge.

In the last 13 years, Congress passed major legislation that expanded taxpayer-financed coverage for prescription drugs but lacked explicit mechanisms for dealing with costs, instead relying mainly on market forces.

Lawmakers look like unwitting enablers in the eyes of some experts.

"Congress in attempting to expand access to prescription drugs has inadvertently created a situation where price increases are much more rapid,'' said economist Paul Ginsburg, a former congressional adviser on Medicare who now directs the Brookings Institution health policy center.

Government-sponsored coverage injected more dollars into the market for medications, and new consumer protections curtailed some blunt instruments insurers used to control costs, such as annual and lifetime limits on the dollar value of coverage.

"The history we see over and over again is that when the government steps in as a guaranteed payer without regard to price, it will be taken advantage of,'' said Peter Bach, director of Memorial Sloan Kettering's Center for Health Policy and Outcomes.

Congressional indignation was on display recently as House members grilled Mylan CEO Heather Bresch about price increases for her company's EpiPens, prefilled syringes that deliver a rescue drug for people suffering life-threatening allergic reactions. The company was accused of gouging patients, but there was little introspection about the role of government.

It's not that a secret signal went out from Capitol Hill making it OK for Mylan to charge $608 for an EpiPen two-pack. Instead, government policies make it easier to introduce new medications at a high price and to charge more for existing drugs.

"It has dramatically changed the pricing environment,'' Ginsburg said. "If a manufacturer sets the price higher, there will be less resistance to that price because a lot more people will be able to access that drug than in the past. The rational thing for the manufacturer would be to raise the prices both of existing drugs and newly introduced ones.''

Consider the following:

Passed in 2003 under President George W. Bush, Medicare's Part D prescription benefit provided drug coverage to seniors. Medicare was forbidden to negotiate prices. Instead, private insurers and pharmacy benefit managers would keep costs in

check. For a while it seemed to be working amid greater use of generic drugs. But expensive new specialty drugs and price increases for some older medications changed things. A feature of the program that protects beneficiaries from catastrophic costs has allowed drug makers and insurers to pass the bill for very expensive medications on to taxpayers.

Enacted in 2010 under President Barack Obama, the Affordable Care Act expanded coverage for the uninsured. It made prescription drugs an essential benefit and barred dollar limits on insurance coverage. The drug industry supported the legislation and, according to documents released by House Republicans, got a White House commitment not to seek Medicare rebates opposed by drug makers. The administration helped defeat an attempt to let patients import lower-cost drugs from abroad.

Obama's health care law provided makers of cutting-edge biologic drugs 12 years of protection from generic competitors, not a shorter period sought by consumer advocates.

"It's not clear to what extent Part D and the ACA may have directly caused the very large increases in drug prices in the last five years or so,'' said Rick Foster, formerly Medicare's chief actuary. "Having said that, it wouldn't surprise me if the significant increase in insurance coverage, and especially the catastrophic protection, contributed to the drug price increases.''

The drug industry, a formidable lobby, rejects such speculation.

"Fundamentally, we disagree that there is not adequate cost containment for medicines built into Part D, or the ACA,'' said Lisa Joldersma, vice president of policy and research with the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America.

"We think the market is best able to manage the holistic picture and to strike the right balance across cost containment, access and continuous innovation,'' she added.

The public seems receptive to government action. A Kaiser Family Foundation poll released Thursday shows strong support for requiring drug companies to disclose how they set prices (86 percent), Medicare negotiations (82 percent), price limits on costly drugs to treat cancer and diseases like hepatitis (78 percent), and allowing Americans to import medications from Canada (71 percent).

Rep. Xavier Becerra, a senior California Democrat, says he doesn't believe Obama's overhaul and Bush's prescription benefit are responsible for high-cost drugs. But he still thinks Congress has to act.

"I don't think there's anyone who doesn't believe we need to do more aggressive oversight of the industry,'' Becerra said.

It may be getting late, suggests Urban Institute economist Eugene Steuerle.

"Government simply cannot provide monopoly power and at the same time say that it will pay a price set in the private market by those companies,'' Steuerle said. "Turning the power of the purse over to monopolists is absurd.''

Vacation, travel and hospitality

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The Relocation/Retirement tour with the

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

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

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

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

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

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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

Spectacular rentals are available for low weekly prices on at resorts such as Bahia Turquesa Residences and Villas Sol Playa Hermosa in Guanacaste. We have 
1- to 3-bedroom ocean and garden view timeshares available and most offer air conditioning, cable TV, fully equipped kitchens, and relaxing hammocks on private balconies. Enjoy the unique combination of seclusion and convenience as all resorts listed on our site are close to popular Costa Rican attractions and downtown 
centers, but are surrounded in lush, tropical forest. Villas are also available for sale in our inventory, so you can enjoy yearly vacations to this mesmerizing rainforest paradise. Please visit our rental inventory HERE!  or call us toll free at 877-815-4227, International: 603-516-0200.  Email:

Real estate for rent (paid category)

Charming Chalet for Rent
Mountain forest and fresh air. Charming two-bedroom and two-bath chalet style home. Near downtown Heredia away from the noise and traffic in the quiet mountain setting of Monte de la Cruz. Room for parking on a large manicured garden property. Fully furnished with loft and laundry room. Property is gated. No smokers, must have references, and no more than an occupancy of two.  $550 per month. One month deposit.  Please call Leda at:  2267-6306  to make an appointment to view.

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A.M. Costa Rica's
Fifth news page
Salsa Lizano
San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 194
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Hoboken commuter train kills
one and hurts many at station

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

At least one person was killed and more than 100 others were injured, some critically, when a commuter train crashed into a busy rail station Thursday in Hoboken, New Jersey, near New York City.

Hoboken city spokesman Juan Melli said the train derailed and plowed through the platform during the morning rush hour.

Witnesses reported seeing one woman pinned under concrete and others bleeding after the train crashed through a barrier at the end of the track. The train stopped in a covered area between an indoor waiting area and the platform, causing the collapse of a section of the metal roof.

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie said the train entered the station at much too high a rate of speed and crashed into all the barriers before stopping.

Christie declined to offer specifics about the cause of the crash but said he thought it was nothing more than a tragic accident.

Christie said the train's engineer was hospitalized and was cooperating with law enforcement officials in the investigation.

Images on television and social media showed extensive damage to the rail station and the front of a train resting beyond the tracks.

Rail service was suspended in and out of Hoboken, located about seven miles outside New York City on the west side of the Hudson River.

Ex-president’s oldest grandson
dies of heart attack in France

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Curtis Roosevelt, 86, the oldest grandson of former president Franklin D. Roosevelt, has died.

Roosevelt died Monday at his home in Saint-Bonnet-du-Gard, France, from an apparent heart attack, Michelle Slung, his literary executor, told the Washington Post Thursday.

The Franklin D. Roosevelt Presidential Library and Museum also posted a brief note Thursday about Roosevelt's death.

"The FDR Library and Museum mourns the loss of Curtis Roosevelt,” director Paul Sparrow said, according to the Post. “He was a wonderful writer, educator and a strong supporter of the library. As the oldest grandson of Franklin and Eleanor, he provided a unique perspective on their remarkable lives."

Roosevelt, a former United Nations officer, was the son of Anna Roosevelt Halstead, the only daughter of Franklin and Eleanor Roosevelt.

His 2008 memoir "Too Close to the Sun" chronicled his childhood growing up with the two political luminaries and the brief time he spent living at the White House with his mother and sister during Franklin Roosevelt's first term.

Mrs. Clinton attacks Trump
for avoiding U.S. income tax

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Democrat Hillary Clinton is unleashing a wave of attacks on Republican Donald Trump for bragging that at least in some years he has avoided paying any U.S. income tax.

"That makes me smart," Trump said at the contentious debate between the two rivals earlier this week when she noted that in two years where his tax returns have been made public, he paid no taxes.

Thursday, a political action group supporting Mrs. Clinton's presidential candidacy posted a new ad online in four contested battleground election states, playing back several comments Trump made at the debate as she disparaged his reputation as a businessman who looked out only for his own financial well-being.

"This election is a choice between an economy that benefits everyone, and an economy that benefits Donald Trump," the ad said.

In the days since the debate, Mrs. Clinton, Vice President Joe Biden and first lady Michelle Obama have all attacked Trump for his unapologetic delight in avoiding taxes. Trump told an interviewer Wednesday that not paying taxes "would make me smart because tax is a big payment."

Mrs. Clinton told supporters at one rally this week, "He actually bragged about gaming the system to get out of paying his fair share of taxes. In fact, I think there's a strong probability he hasn't paid federal taxes in a lot of years. If not paying taxes makes him smart, what does that make all the rest of us?"

Mrs. Clinton and her husband, former President Bill Clinton, have released decades of their tax returns, with the 2015 statement showing they earned $10.6 million last year, much of it from lucrative speeches they gave, and paid $3.24 million in taxes to the federal government.

But Trump, shunning a four-decade tradition by U.S. presidential candidates, has refused to release his recent tax returns, saying he would disclose them when federal authorities are finished auditing them, although the U.S. tax agency has said there is no prohibition keeping him from making them public now.

Effort to put cameras on cops
faces delays and opposition

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

After El Cajon, California, police shot dead an unarmed black man said to be mentally ill, they released a photo from a bystander's cellphone video, showing the man in what they called a shooting stance against the officers.

The image does not show clearly if Alfred Olango, 38, was holding anything, and officials had no police body camera video showing the officers' view of the shooting. Police said they recovered a vape smoking device, not a gun, from the scene.

Officials voted months ago to purchase body cameras for police in the city of 100,000 residents 15 miles (24 km) northeast of San Diego. They have not yet been delivered, the police department said in a statement.

After controversial police killings in several cities including Ferguson, Missouri, North Charleston, South Carolina and Chicago, pressure has mounted for the nearly 18,000 local, state and federal law enforcement agencies across the United States to issue the cameras to their officers.

Yet the rollout has been slow.

About 95 percent of U.S. law enforcement agencies had a camera program or intended to adopt one, according to a December 2015 survey conducted jointly by the Major Cities Chiefs Association and Major County Sheriffs Association.

To speed things along, the U.S. Justice Department on Monday granted a total of $20 million to 106 law enforcement agencies to help purchase body cameras. But even that sum would cover just a sliver of what it would take to outfit all police officers in the United States, experts said.

Some localities have resisted body cameras, citing the cost of storing data, distrust of how video will be used or lack of research into its usefulness.

"The technology is just not there yet, and the cameras show only a small point of view," said Shannon Martin, a city council member in Port St. Lucie, Florida. The city is among those that have debated cameras but not bought them.

In Madison, Wisconsin, mistrust between residents and police is high enough that some residents were concerned that police would manipulate video content and use it against marginalized communities.

"I don't think it would resolve the issues we're facing. It would give the police another tool to harm the community," said Veronica Lazo, who co-chaired an advisory committee on the subject in Madison.

Many police departments support body cameras, saying videos will vindicate officers in the vast majority of cases.

A video can be a tremendous asset that gives context to an officer's actions, said Martin Mayer, a California lawyer who specializes in defending government agencies including police departments.

"What it does provide in many instances is not only the perspective of the officer, but also what leads up to the use of force," Mayer said.

Pockets of police continue to resist. Some unionized police officers have sued cities over being required to wear cameras.

Others worry body cameras may make officers too inhibited, constantly watching what they say.

"The industry shoved this down everybody's throat, and political people threw up their hands and said, 'We've got a panacea here,'" said Eugene O'Donnell, a former New York City police officer who teaches at John Jay College of Criminal Justice.

Footage is often inconclusive or subject to interpretation, especially for those not trained on what to look for.

In Charlotte, protesters this month demanded to see videos taken at the scene when a police officer shot dead Keith Scott.

Local police initially resisted releasing the video, saying it would not be conclusive. When they did, it failed to settle the question of whether Scott had been holding a gun.

Stroke recovery linked to time
before removing blood clot

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

After a large vessel stroke, a new study finds that a shorter time to treatment after a stroke is critical to having the best recovery.

Stroke is the second leading cause of death worldwide and the third leading cause of disability, according to the World Health Organization.

Researchers from the University of California, Los Angeles, wanted to find out what window of time could provide the best recovery rate for stroke patients, along with which treatment also worked best. So they reviewed outcomes of more than 1,200 patients experiencing acute ischemic stroke, a stoke in a major artery that cuts off the blood supply to the brain.

Some patients received standard clot-breaking medicine and others received that plus a thrombectomy, a procedure using a tool that pulls clots out of an artery.

Their findings: The sooner the patient had a thrombectomy, the better the overall recovery.

"Time makes a big difference. Every four minutes that goes by after a patient gets to the hospital, one fewer out of 100 patients has a good outcome if the artery hasn’t been opened,” says Dr. Jeffrey Saver, director of the Comprehensive Stroke Center at the University of California Los Angeles.

Blood clots in major arteries cause blood to stop flowing to the brain, and without a blood supply, the brain cells begin to die, which is why time is of the essence when treating a stroke.

“If you get the artery open at three hours, then 65 percent of patients will be able to live independently three months later. If it takes eight hours to get it open, then only 45 percent will be able to live independently. It makes a major difference in outcome,” said Saver.

Saver said it is critical for everyone to know the signs of stroke, facial drooping, arm weakness and difficulty with speech. When these symptoms appear, it's critical to get emergency care.

"Often the patient can't make the call themselves because the stroke is affecting their speaking or their ability to recognize they are having a stroke," he said.

The study was published in JAMA, The Journal of the American Medical Association. Some researchers say the study may change the treatment stroke patients receive when they first come into the hospital.

Ukraine marks 1941 massacre
at Babi Yar forest by Nazi SS

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

On Thursday, Ukraine marked the 75th anniversary of the worst single massacre of civilians in World War II and one of the bloodiest war crimes in human history, the 1941 slaughter at Babi Yar.

Nazi SS forces and Ukrainian collaborators murdered nearly 34,000 Jewish men, women and children over two days in a Kyiv forest.

Almost all of the victims were killed by automatic weapons and their bodies dumped into a pit. Those who were only wounded were shot again in the ravine or buried alive among the corpses.

Only a handful managed to survive.

“Babi Yar is a tragedy for the whole of mankind, but it took place right here, on Ukrainian land,” Ukraine’s President Petro Poroshenko said Thursday in Kyiv after a moment of silence. “That’s why a Ukrainian has no right to forget about it, just like a Jew has no right to forget it because Babi Yar is our common tragedy.”

Repossessing soldiers’ cars
costing Wells Fargo millions

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

The Justice Department announced Thursday that Wells Fargo Bank N.A., doing business as Wells Fargo Dealer Services, has agreed to change its policies and pay over $4.1 million to resolve allegations that it violated the Service Members Civil Relief Act by repossessing 413 cars owned by members of the military without obtaining a court order.

The law protects members of the military against certain civil proceedings that could affect their legal rights while they are on duty.  It requires a court to review and approve any repossession if the service member took out the loan and made a payment before entering military service.

The settlement, which is still subject to court approval, was filed in the U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.  The department launched an investigation after it received a complaint in March 2015 from the U.S. Army’s Legal Assistance Program alleging that Wells Fargo had repossessed Army National Guardsman Dennis Singleton’s used car in Hendersonville, North Carolina, while he was preparing to deploy to Afghanistan to fight in Operation Enduring Freedom. 

After Wells Fargo repossessed the car, it sold it at a public auction and then tried to collect a deficiency balance of over $10,000 from Singleton and his family. 
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Sierra Collection. Meridian House or Chateau Montage.
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The Terraces at San Martin.  Discover the essence of Costa Rica on our Luxury Ocean View Villas . Near Dominicalito Beach and Parque Nacional Marino Ballena.
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Ellan At Ballena Beach.  Welcome to a world of endless adventure on our beachside condominiums at Ballena Beach, Pacific Coast.  For more information click  HERE!
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Real estate for sale (paid category)

San Rmon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya. 7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 foot elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 bath, appliances included. High-speed internet installed,  Price for sale $179,000    Contact Mike: 
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For sale 5,200 m2 Escazú
Fantastic location for condo, hotel, restaurant. Large lower lot, incredible views. Flexible zoning. Easy to get liquor license. Low interest financing. Up to 40% financing / get residency through investor status / includes a corporation that is 27 years old and offshore banking account with  Banco National / possible 50/50 partnership. Super location in front of the Bosques de Escazú  Condos  / Monthly rentals available
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Free US phone 877-778-8515  or 410-975-6703
In Costa Rica 506- 8307-0164
Bruce Cohen

Pavo onr
FOR SALE - $240,000
Exceptional 3-bedroom, 3-bathroom, fully furnished luxury apartment for sale at the exclusive Terrazas de Escazú highrise complex in Escazú near La Paco Commerical Center.  Situated on the third floor, this apartment has an exceptional layout with stunning views of the Central Valley. 140 m2 bright and spacious floor plan with open sky terrace with 180-degree unobstructed view of the Escazú mountains and Central Valley.  One covered parking spot with additional guest parking available. HOA fee:  $250/month. Held in Costa Rica corporation for easy property transfer. Building features: 12-meter atrium with controlled access entrance to the building, surrounding landscaping, lower level pool, communal rooftop terrace and small rooftop gym. 24-hour security. Contact: José Granados in Costa Rica, phone 506- 6051-5249  email:
paco two

Jacó Beach - Super Views - Priced Right
This is a three-bedroom, ine-bath home located at about 100-foot elevation one mile from the beach. Remodeled 2 years ago. Everything is new including total new kitchen, windows, floors, AC units, electric, plumbing, etc. Super fenced yard for dogs. Very low electric bill even with the AC. Very secure & private. Police chief next door. Very easy & inexpensive to expand this house as all neighbors have done. $149,900. Call Glenn at 506 6214-0056.

Costa Rica penthouse for sale
 5 -story penthouse for sale.  One of a kind penthouse on top of the Corobici Hotel in Sabana overlooking the Central Park and new Soccer Stadium in San José.  Excellent location provides you easy access to everywhere.  Other benefits include 24-hour security, 2 restaurants inside the hotel providing 1st class room service plus shared common areas in the hotel. Commercial license is in place. Seller will consider owner financing.  Asking $795K U.S.  Also available for monthly rent for $3,400 per month on an annual basis. Go to  Owners U.S. cell phone: 813 310-7402  Email

horse ranch
Spectacular Horse Ranch and Spiritual/Yoga
Retreat Center For Sale

We invite you to a horseback tour of 187 acres of pristine farm land with breathtaking vistas, including the islands of the Gulf of Nicoya. There are multiple springs and streams, wooded areas, hard-wood and fruit trees, rolling hills with a geat variety of birds and wildlife. This property boasts the privilege of being bordered by thousands of acres of forest preserve down a steep canyon, offering its own spectacular views, which will never be developed. The many hills provide a builder an endless array of possibilities for nestling buildings in where they will have both views and privacy. The elevation of the property at 1,200 to1600 feet above sea level ensures fresh breezes and ideal year-round temperatures with a day-time average in the low 80's for open-air living. There is a ranch-style house with guest house with 8 total bedrooms, 5 modern baths, huge eat-in kitchen, landmark palm-thatched giant rancho, stable, and storage buildings. The home will come partially furnished, including beds, ample dishware for large groups, housewares, linens, washer/dryer, and fine hard-wood hand-built cabinetry. The remaining horses, 4 to 6 of them, will also convey if one wishes. We are also including a LARGE BEACH LOT in nearby Playa Bejuco. San Rafael de Nandayure is a tiny rural village nestled into the mountainside above Carmona with all the charms of the simple good life of a BLUE ZONE. Carmona is a thriving town with a clinic, restaurfants, shopping, and everything else one may need.  More information
go to  Call Darin Ricco, phone +619-846-8249 or email:

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

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San José, Costa Rica, Friday, Sept. 30, 2016, Vol. 17, No. 194
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Aroyo Seco
Universidad Nacional del Centro/G.G. Politis et al
This is an overview of the Arroyo Seco 2 site.

Argentina site credited to early humans

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services
and staff reports

Ancient artifacts found at an archaeological site in Argentina suggest that humans occupied South America earlier than most conservative estimates.

Approximately 13,000 years ago, a prehistoric group of hunter-gathers known as the Clovis people lived in Northern America. Previous research suggests that the Clovis culture, named after the town in New Mexico, was one of the earliest cultures in the Americas. However, more recent research from the Pampas region of Argentina supports the hypothesis that early Homo sapiens arrived in the Americas earlier than the Clovis hunters did.

The evidence for earlier human arrival in the Americas comes from a rich archaeological site in southeastern South America called Arroyo Seco 2. A group of scientists led by Gustavo Politis from Consejo Nacional de Investigaciones Científicas y Técnicas and the Universidad Nacional del Centro de la Provincia de Buenos Aires present the research in a new PLOS ONE study.

At Arroyo Seco 2, the researchers excavated ancient tools, bone remains from a variety of extinct species and broken animal bones containing fractures caused by human tools. They used radiocarbon dating to determine the age of the mammal bones and analyzed the specimens under a microscope. The remains were dated between 14,064 and 13,068 years ago, and the authors hypothesize that Arroyo Seco 2 may have been occupied by humans during that time.

The researchers say that humans arrived in South America after the onset of the Last Glacial Maximum, the last glacial period, which took place 19,000 to 20,000 years ago. However, some researchers date the petroglyphs at Brazil’s Serra da Capivara National Park to about 22,000 years ago, and they may be far older.

Paleontologists in Uruguay have documented what they think is a human hunt of a giant sloth about 30,000 years ago, according to researchers at Vanderbilt University. The same researchers are investigating the Monte Verde in southern Chile where evidence shows habitation at least as early as 14,800 years ago.

The skeleton of a teenage girl has been found in an underwater cave in the Yucatan and dated to about 13,000 years ago, She entered the cave when it was above the water level during the peak of the Ice Age.

Caldera highway tolls going up again

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Tolls on the Caldera highway, Ruta 27, are going up. This is something that happens three times a year. Passengers cars and motorcycles will cost just 40 colons more for the trip from San José to the Pacific coast. But truckers with the biggest vehicles will find that tolls have increased 250 colons for the full trip.

The operator, Sociedad Concesionaria Autopistas del Sol S.A., built the highway and runs it as a concession from the state.
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From Page 7:

Renting suggested instead of commuting

 By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Most workers report in a survey that the time commuting is a waste.

The Costa Rica government and some private firms have instituted a form of telecommute where some employees work out of their homes.

But what about closing that big business deal in New York or coming from Guanacaste to San José for a day full of sales meetings.

Enter the concept of day offices. This is a growing trend in an increasingly flexible world market.

One firm in that business is the Regus Group Cos. It has properties available in more than 100 countries, including Costa Rica. They rent space long-term or even by the day, the firm said in a summary.

The firm said its massive worldwide survey showed that many workers consider travel time to be lost.

About 19 percent said they fill the time by reading, doing personal chores or checking the news on smartphones.

Regus said the solution for some employers is to have workers rent formal offices near their home, either full-time or part-time.

Of course, most upscale hotels have conference rooms or business centers for the traveling executive, but the idea of day offices presents another option and suggests more stability.