free webpage hit counter
beach party
A.M. Costa Rica
Your daily English-language news source Monday through Friday

Weather ear
Cocal for Jan. 20

(506) 2223-1327                                     Published  Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014, in Vol. 14, No. 223                        Email us
Real Estate
About us
Rock Construction

Municipalidad de Nicoya photo


Nicoya residents continued to honor the Virgen de Guadalupe over the weekend with the traditional  Pica e´Leña. Some 25 boyeros chopped and carried wood with their oxen and carts from a nearby farm into Nicoya for the festival of  La Guadalupe Dec. 11 and 13. The wood will be used to cook foods for the festival. The tradition dates from 1544. The parade of oxcarts was accompanied by music, dancing and singing.

Higher value-added tax based on two propositions
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The government got the blessing of a visiting International Monetary Fund visitor Monday for its plan for a value-added tax.

In fact, the visitor, Lorenzo Figliuoli, suggested that Costa Rica establish an eventual 15 percent value-added tax to replace the current 13 percent sales tax.

The proposal hinges on the willingness of the public to pay the higher rate and the discipline of government officials to use the new income to reduce the national deficit. Both propositions are uncertain.

A number of government agencies are trying to restore cuts made in the 2015 national budget by a legislative committee. The cuts were modest. But ministries like Salud are protesting and warn of serious deficiencies. The health ministry sought nearly a 10 percent increase in its budget this year.

The Comisión de Asuntos Hacendarios made cuts of about 4 percent, but they must be approved by the full legislature.

The government sees as one advantage of a
 value-added tax that manufacturers and merchants will be more likely to report the tax because they will be able to recover what they paid to the entity earlier in the supply chain. The value-added tax is collected at every level of production and marketing.

However, if there is no entity collecting tax earlier in the supply chain, as would be the case with lawyers, physicians and accountants, there would be no incentive. In fact, the collection of the current sales tax is so irregular because many vendors just ignore it. Tax inspectors seem challenged to root out the scofflaws.

Another concern with higher taxes is smuggling.

There are continual arrests for smuggling alcohol, cigarettes and even oranges from Panamá and other goods from Nicaragua. An additional 2 percent added to the taxes is certain to increase smuggling, based on traditional economic rules.

The visitor, Figliuoli, suggested a two-step implementation of the tax in a press conference Monday.

Certainly the government will have to study what this might do to international competitivity and also to the tourism industry.

Dental Vac 
Family home
Altos de Antigua
Ad rep sought

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



Sportsmen's Lodge

rss graphic
Twitter link
facebook logo

Have you seen our crossword puzzle?


Great Sunrise


association of residents

What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
Real Estate
About us
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission.
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for more details

Villas Palaermo

A.M. Costa Rica's
Second news page

 San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 223      

Real Estate
About us

Professional Directory
A.M. Costa Rica's professional directory is where business people who wish to reach the English-speaking community may invite responses. If you are interested in being represented here, please contact the editor.

Residency experts

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

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

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


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

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

James Brohl, C.P.A. & M.B.A.
US Income Tax,  US GAAP Accounting
& Business Consulting

• US Tax return preparation  for
individuals and businesses
• eFile returns: secure with faster refunds
• Assist with back reporting and other filing issues
• Take advantage of the Foreign
Income Tax Exclusion (up to $
99,200 in 2014}
• Business Consulting to facilitate working in Costa Ric
• Accounting for US and International Financial Reporting
• Associate of David Housman

Telephone 8305-3149 or 2256-8620

Lucinda Gray, Ph.D.
California Licensed Psychologist
International Practice via the Web
gray book
   'New World Meditation'
Training & Support
 Buy Now
via Amazon
Costa Rica: (506) 2228-2041

Legal services

Real Estate Closing Services
Lic Matta

Lic. Pablo Mata Ferreto, MBA.

Legal – Financial Adviser

Real Estate and Business Transactions

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

Phone number: (506) 8853-0000


Marco Cavallini & Associates
Dental Implants and Crowns

Dr. Marco A. Muñoz Cavallini has placed and restored
DR. Cavallini
Dr. Marco A. Muñoz Cavallini
over 17,000 dental implants since 1980. The Dr. Marco Muñoz Cavallini Dental Clinic, is recognized as one of the best practices in Dental Reconstruction, Dental Implant placement and Cosmetic Dentistry in Costa Rica and the World. For more information, visit us today at:

Remodelling and Construction

Real estate agents and services

CR Beach
Jaco Beach Central Pacific Real Estate
CR Beach Investment Real Estate Broker & INT’L
NAR certified Realtor Jeff Fisher is famous for being “Brutally Honest.”
See why he still believes only the 100% titled land of the Jaco beach & Central Pacific areas of Playa Hermosa/ Jaco-Los Suenos Marina & Golf and the Esterillos-Bejuco beaches are the best places to live, invest and enjoy. 
Reason #1:  SJO Int’l Airport and S.J. suburbs are little more than one hour away.
#2: The Jaco area has everything you need, from KFC to Gourmet Organic;  from zip lines to bank lines, from a movie house to a fire sale house…. 
#3: BUYERS’ MARKET: Many properties are at their lowest price ever
           *$179,900 Hermosa Beachfront Community with Ocean Views !
Yes we know Costa Rica: Jeff (21 years here), Frances Winborne (23 years), and Junior Diaz (Jacó born & bred),  and we chose the Central Pacific!

Member of the N.A.R., the Costa Rican Real Estate Board CRGAR and the Central Pacific Chamber of Commerce.
Toll Free: 1-888-782-1119 or  2643-4334, 2643-3672
JACO Office: IL Galeone Center by BAC, #14, Costa Rica

exo graphic
with text
   • Specialized in the Central and South Pacific.
   • Great network of realtors, to find your dream
   • Homes, condominium & luxury homes
   • Eco lodges and Hotels
   • Green properties and waterfalls
   • Farms and developments
   • Sustainable and green living communities.
   • Property management in the Jacó area
Telephone: +506 2643-4065   
cell: +506 8825-6556   US:  626 548-3909
skype: ecorealtorscr  Facebook: ecorealtorscr
Office Las Monas, Jacó
Green NAR designee, member of the CCBR, CRGAR

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


* Colinas del Sol is a fenced and gated project  in a quiet area.
* There are 88 clear titled lots.
* Mountain areas with great views.
* Gently sloping level areas ideal for hobby farms, gardening, fruit tree orchards.
* Quiet place to get away from the busy city and beach crowds.
* All lots have gravel roads to them, water and electricity at each.
* Lots are 5,000 sq. meters or larger, starting at only $39,000 USD , and many can be combined for those wanting a larger area for their chosen passion, be it a hobby horse farm or retirement haven.
* Located in Libertad, Guanacaste, Northwest Pacific area of Costa Rica.
* Electricity and water to each of 79 clear0titled lots.
* 20 minutes to the Liberia International Airport
* 15 minutes to the Pacific Beaches
* 10 minutes to Medical Facilities
* 25 minutes to the Liberia Hospital
* 5 minutes to Papagayo  Golf & Country Club
Contact Jim Day
or Phone:  001 517 484-3675.
Click Here:

Our reader's opinion
Without legal security, investors shy away

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

Don Luis Guillermo Solís, the president, continues to approach the U.S., Canada and others for inward investment when the "inefficiencies" of the judicial system make the timely resolution of any possible legal "disagreement" doubtful.  One might argue that the law in Costa Rica is an abettor of white collar theft and fraud. Why would any intelligent investor come here knowing the state of law in the land of Depende?  Property rights are a basic tenant of the law anywhere, and such blatant and offensive disregard is a damning indictment of the legal system in Costa Rica.

The various credit agencies have already downgraded Costa Rica. It's legal system is in dysfunctional disarray, and well placed white collar operators continue to ply their trade with an arrogance in the knowledge they have nothing to fear.   Meanwhile honest folk bear the brunt of a justice system acquiescent to the machinations of the white collar crooks and their protectors. No inward investment will be forthcoming by intelligent companies or individuals while this intolerable situation continues to proliferate with seeming impunity. 

Perhaps the government could set an example by re-looking at its contract with the Chinese company entrusted to widening the road to Limón. The World Bank has cited Chinese Harbour's parent CCCC for bribery and corruption and banned it.  Perhaps the government knows something that the World Bank doesn't?
Sheldon Haseltine
(For the record, we are in a land dispute)
San José

No prosecution for tool thief

Dear A.M. Costa Rica:

I spent three months in Costa Rica, and I am very disappointed with the law system. My friend got robbed of all his tools. We caught the thug on the spot and called the cops. They came in a heart beat. They question the fellow, and he said that part of the tools were at a pawn shop. We went with the cops and the thief, got the tools as evidence, and we went to the court to meet the prosecutor. She said that it was not enough evidence and was the guy’s first time, and next day he was on the loose..and he stole more than $1,000. That is Costa Rica. Pura vida, a very pitiful slogan !!!

Mauricio Corleto
Houston, Texas


He picked a chilly hiding place

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

A man suspected of stabbing a relative in Pavas fled the scene and tried to hide in a neighboring house.

Fuerza Pública officers were on his tail and received permission from the occupant to search the house.

They had trouble locating him. They even looked in a dog house, but he was not there.

The man, who is known to police, had managed to crawl into the refrigerator. When police opened the door, he emerged violently, they said, but they managed to cuff him.

U.S. Embassy gives dogs to prison guards

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Embassy of the United States has donated to the Policía Penitenciaria 19 trained dogs and four vehicles to move them in. The donations are valued at $230,000, including the cost of bringing the dogs to Costa Rica from Colombia where they were trained.

The dogs include golden retrievers, and Belgian and German shepherds

Elizabeth Odio to seek rights court post

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The country is putting forward Elizabeth Odio Benito as a candidate for judge in the Interamerican Court of Human Rights. She is a former vice president and a long-time academic in the Universidad de Costa Rica.

She also has served as a judge in the International Criminal Court and in the criminal tribunal for Yugoslavia.

Volcano alert lowered for some cantons

By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The national emergency commission has dropped the alert for the cantons of Cartago, Oreamuno and Jiménez but have maintained it for Alvarado and Turrialba. The reason is that the Turrialba volcano is becoming more stable, the commission said.

Classes have begun again in the educational centers that were closed when the volcano was spewing gas and ashes.

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

Top story news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

From our retirement guide

Retirement tips news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

newspaper nameplate

Del Rey Hotel

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica

Third News Page
AIM new ad
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 223          
Real Estate
About us
School director, ministry employee held in sale of test questions
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

Cheating on school tests always has been a concern and the topic of many rumors.

Monday, the Limón prosecutor and judicial agents raided five high schools and detained two persons on the allegation that they were selling answers to the annual bachillerato exams in Spanish and math.

One of those detained, is a Ministerio de Educación Pública employee. The other is the director of a private school.

These major exams in Costa Rica are guarded closely. They are distributed by the Fuerza Pública.

The Poder Judicial alleged that a school director in Batán picked up
the stack of exams early in the day from police. This provided time for him to determine the answers and to distribute the responses to other schools by text messaging, said agents.

The answers went to confederates at other schools who would then sell the information for amounts ranging from 10,000 to 30,000 colons, the prosectorial agency said. That is about $19.50 to $55.

Agents raided the Bilingüe Experimental de Siquirres, Gilander de Batán, Venecia, Matina and Cuba Creek in Matina and confiscated cell telephones in an effort to learn who might have received the purloined test questions.   

No students have been detained yet, agents said late Monday. Agents said they have not discarded the possibility that students at other schools were involved.

Most of the annual marchamo payment is just a tax on vehicles
By the A.M. Costa Rica staff

The Instituto Nacional de Seguos, the state insurance agency, expects to collect 176 billion colons or about $325 million for the annual road tax.

Most of the money, some 69.5 percent, is a tax that goes to the Ministerio de Hacienda. Just 19.9 percent goes to the insurance company for coverage, according to data provided by the insurance firm Monday. There are a number of other agencies that also have their hand out. The amounts are relatively modest.

The insurance firm, known as INS, said that it expects payments from about 1.25 million vehicle owners. Private firms can receive a commission for collecting the fee. Banks, insurance firms and even the payment stations in supermarkets accept the money.

Vehicle owners can find out how much they owe by going to the insurance institute's Web page, or by calling 800-6272-4266. Or they can call 2243-9999.  The company said that a text message to 1467 giving the license plate number will generate a response giving the amount.

The marchamo has to be paid by Dec. 31, or there is the possibility of a 49,000-colon fine, some $90.

Like many other payment locations, INS has a raffle.

You need to see Costa Rican tourism information HERE!

Del Rey nightlife

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

Fish Fabulous Costa Rica

A.M. Costa Rica's Fourth News page
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 223       
Real Estate
About us

New study relates chronic marijuana use to brain abnormalities
By The Center for BrainHealth news staff

The effects of chronic marijuana use on the brain may depend on age of first use and duration of use, according to researchers at the Center for BrainHealth at The University of Texas at Dallas.

In a paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers for the first time comprehensively describe existing abnormalities in brain function and structure of long-term marijuana users with multiple magnetic resonance imaging techniques. Findings show chronic marijuana users have smaller brain volume in the orbitofrontal cortex, a part of the brain commonly associated with addiction, but also increased brain connectivity.

“We have seen a steady increase in the incidence of marijuana use since 2007,“said Francesca Filbey, associate professor in the School of Behavioral and Brain Sciences at the University of Texas at Dallas and director of the cognitive neuroscience research in addictive disorders at the Center for BrainHealth. “However, research on its long-term effects remains scarce despite the changes in legislation surrounding marijuana and the continuing conversation surrounding this relevant public health topic.”

The research team studied 48 adult marijuana users and 62 gender- and age-matched non-users, accounting for potential biases such as gender, age and ethnicity. The authors also controlled for tobacco and alcohol use. On average, the marijuana users who participated in the study consumed the drug three times per day. Cognitive tests show that chronic marijuana users had lower IQ compared to age-and gender-matched controls but the differences do not seem to be related to the brain abnormalities as no direct correlation can be drawn between IQ deficits and orbitofrontal cortex volume decrease.

“What’s unique about this work is that it combines three different MRI techniques to evaluate different brain characteristics,” said Sina Aslan, founder and president of Advance MRI, LLC and adjunct
assistant professor at The University of Texas at Dallas. “The results suggest increases in connectivity, both structural and functional that may be compensating for gray matter losses. Eventually, however, the structural connectivity or wiring of the brain starts degrading with prolonged marijuana use.”

Tests reveal that earlier onset of regular marijuana use induces greater structural and functional connectivity. Greatest increases in connectivity appear as an individual begins using marijuana. Findings show severity of use is directly correlated to greater connectivity.

Although increased structural wiring declines after six to eight years of continued chronic use, marijuana users continue to display more intense connectivity than healthy non-users, which may explain why chronic, long-term users “seem to be doing just fine” despite smaller orbitofrontal cortex brain volumes, Professor Filbey explained.

“To date, existing studies on the long-term effects of marijuana on brain structures have been largely inconclusive due to limitations in methodologies,” said Professor Filbey. “While our study does not conclusively address whether any or all of the brain changes are a direct consequence of marijuana use, these effects do suggest that these changes are related to age of onset and duration of use.”

The study offers a preliminary indication that gray matter in the orbitofrontal cortex may be more vulnerable than white matter to the effects of delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), the main psychoactive ingredient in the cannabis plant.

According to the authors, the study provides evidence that chronic marijuana use initiates a complex process that allows neurons to adapt and compensate for smaller gray matter volume, but further studies are needed to determine whether these changes revert back to normal with discontinued marijuana use, whether similar effects are present in occasional marijuana users versus chronic users and whether these effects are indeed a direct result of marijuana use or a predisposing factor.

Vacation, travel and hospitality

La Fortuna
Comfort of your home in the campo, 5 minutes from Fortuna Centro of San Carlos, in the shadow of Volcano Arenal, Flat screen TV, AC, refrigerator, free coffee. Local area activities like four-wheeling, horse riding, zip lining, hot springs, jungle walking tours. Bring your camera for great photos of nature, fishing and swimming, canyoning and wireless internet. Harry Hart, proprietor.  Call for reservations  (506) 2479-8670   and (506) 8682-9219  Email:

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

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

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

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

Need a book about Costa Rica?

Check out our special selections available at Amazon logo


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

Real estate rental services (paid category)

See our listing of real estate brokers on the for-sale page.

Real estate for rent (paid category)
Enjoy living in the middle of wonderful mountains.
Fresh air, gorgeous forest. Near downtown but away from noisy city.  Nature lifestyle.  Beautiful chalet in a large property located in Monte de la Cruz, Heredia. Two bedrooms, two baths, laundry room, fully furnished, security, electric gate. Rate $500 monthly. Phone  2267-6306  Email


Beautiful cottage in San Rafael, Heredia

Cottage in the mountain.  Surrounded by nature.  One bedroom, 1.5 bathrooms. Beautiful balcony and view. Bus line service, security.  $500 monthly.  Phone: 506-8739-0638  Email:

Maneul Antonio
The vacation homes at Manuel Antonio Estates offers luxury, comfort and peace of mind. We have numerous homes to chose from, all within walking distance of the town’s shops and restaurants and just a few minutes to the best beaches and the famous national park. While the homes are secluded and hidden among the rainforest, the surrounding area offers adventures like zip lines, white water rafting, mangrove kayaking and many more. All of the homes are available for short-term rentals, have easily accessible parking, cable TV, and Internet and are fully furnished. We are happy to assist with all your need for the perfect Costa Rican vacation.
Manuel Antonio Estates        TOLL FREE: 1800 346 9724
011 (506) 2777.3339

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:

Beautiful fully furnished two floor house for rent
in La Guacima

Guacima montage
La Guacima, Alajuela. 20 minutes from airport, San José or Alajuela Centro and 30 minutes from Heredia. Near highway 27. $1,000 a month. All services included (Internet, water, electricity, security). Very private, very quiet, green areas, fully furnished. Must like animals (we have three gentle dogs), look at high resolution pics HERE! U.S. citizens or Europeans preferred. No children. Call to inquire and for appointment to visit. Available for rent in December. Contact phone number:  (506)  8839-4315.

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.

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.

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica's   Fifth news page
Family home

cat trees
San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 223       
Real Estate
About us

Altos de Antigua

Russia more provocative,
new report says of strategy

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Russia’s provocative military actions toward Western countries is at Cold War levels, and the risky strategy could prove catastrophic, according to new report.

In a report released on Monday, the European Leadership Network, a London-based think tank, gathered details of and mapped almost 40 specific incidents over the past eight months.

“These events add up to a highly disturbing picture of violations of national airspace, emergency scrambles, narrowly avoided mid-air collisions, close encounters at sea, simulated attack runs and other dangerous actions happening on a regular basis over a very wide geographical area,” write the authors of the report, entitled "Dangerous Brinkmanship: Close Military Encounters Between Russia and the West in 2014."

Some of the incidents were labeled serious because of “aggressive or unusually provocative nature, bringing a higher level risk of escalation,” according to the report.

Three of those incidents stood out, including a near miss between a Russian surveillance plane and a civilian airliner, the abduction of an Estonian intelligence officer and the alleged appearance of a Russian submarine in Swedish waters that set off a major submarine hunt.

“What is at stake here is very profound,” said Jonathan Eyal of the Royal United Services Institute, a United Kingdom-based defense and security think tank. “What we are seeing is attempts to puncture the security guarantee, the credibility of the security guarantee, which the West has provided to former Communist nations.”

A North Atlantic Treaty Organization official said the report confirms patterns they have seen all year.

"So far this year, we have had over 100 separate incidents in which NATO jets have intercepted Russian aircraft," the official said in an email. "That is more than three times as many as we had during the whole of last year."

The official added that on many occasions, Russian pilots have failed to turn on their transponders or talk to civilian air traffic control and that this represents a danger to civilian aircraft.

"NATO remains vigilant and ready to respond," the official said. "In reaction to Russia’s aggression over Ukraine, we have enhanced the collective defense of our Allies. We have increased air patrols in the region. We have deployed more ships to the Baltic and the Black Seas."

They added that the "measures are entirely defensive and fully in line with NATO’s international commitments."

President Barack Obama has been adamant about defending NATO allies.

"We will defend our NATO allies, and that means every ally," he said during a visit to Estonia in September. "In this alliance, there are no old members or new members, no junior partners or senior partners. They're just allies, pure and simple."

Brian E. Carlson, a former U.S. ambassador to Latvia, says that in early 2004, when the Baltic States were entering NATO, Russia took similarly provocative actions.

He said that by April NATO and the U.S. Air Force began conducting combat air patrols.

"The Russians quit testing our resolve," he wrote in an email.

"I personally believe that these Russian actions today need a response much like "broken windows" theory in New York City," he said. In essence, the theory states that by taking care of small issues, larger problems can be avoided.

While some of Russia’s actions are a throwback to the Cold War, analyst Douglas Barrie of the International Institute for Strategic Studies, a United Kingdom-based international security think tank, says Russia is not nearly as powerful as it was decades ago.

“What NATO are now faced with isn’t a Soviet-era size air force,” he said. “The Russian Air Force is significantly smaller, significantly less capable than the Soviet Air Force was in the 1980s.”

Barrie said the actions show a level of ambition within the Russian elite.

Still, the network urges caution, including calling on Russia to re-evaluate its more assertive posture, calling for both sides to exercise military and political restraint and improve military-to-military communication and transparency.

“Even though direct military confrontation has been avoided so far, the mix of more aggressive Russian posturing and the readiness of Western forces to show resolve increases the risk of unintended escalation and the danger of losing control over events,” the authors wrote.

Sputnik now becomes name
for Russian media initiative

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Russia has launched another state-run, international media brand called Sputnik, a name with connotations of the Cold War.

Sputnik, according to a statement, is for people who are “tired of aggressive propaganda promoting a unipolar world and want a different perspective.”

Announcing the launch Monday in Moscow, Dmitry Kiselev, referred to by many as the Kremlin’s propagandist-in-chief, said Sputnik will “provide an alternative interpretation of the world, of course,” adding that “there is demand for this.”

Kiselev, a conservative television anchor who heads the Rossiya Segodnya media outlet created by Russian leader Vladimir Putin last year to promote Russia's image abroad, said the outlet would have news hubs in 30 cities including Washington, London, Berlin and Paris, as well as the capitals of several former Soviet republics.

According to the news release, Sputnik will broadcast in 30 languages, with over 800 hours of radio programming a day, covering over 130 cities and 34 countries by the end of next year. Sputnik will offer news wires, a radio station, a Web site and mobile phone apps.

"In this world, Japan is Japanese, Turkey is Turkish, China is Chinese and Russia is Russian," Kiselev said in a statement. "We are not suggesting that other nations should adopt the Russian way of life. We believe everyone is entitled to live in their own way. Our outlook on the world is rooted in international law.”

Kiselev would not discuss the cost of Sputnik.

Russia has been working hard to repair its international image in the wake of the Ukraine crisis.

In another media development in Russia, American cable news broadcaster, CNN, announced Monday it will no longer be available to Russian cable TV providers starting next year.

According to TASS, no reason for the move was given.

The Voice of America, as well as many other international broadcasters have moved to solely distribute their content in Russia online.

Obama comes out strongly
for neutrality of Internet

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

U.S. President Barack Obama has asked for the strongest possible rules to protect net neutrality and ensure Internet service providers treat all traffic equally.

He made the request Monday to the Federal Communications Commission, which is writing new Internet traffic regulations.

Obama urged the FCC to ban any deals that would allow content providers to pay Internet providers to deliver their material more quickly, known as paid prioritization. He also said providers should not be allowed to block legal Internet content from consumers.

The president said the FCC should regulate consumer broadband services like a public utility.

Earlier this year, the FCC proposed widespread changes in the way the Internet operates in the United States.

The Federal Communications Commission voted in May to offer a plan that could allow such major Internet Service Providers as AT&T and Comcast to make deals with companies like Google and Facebook to provide them with faster paths for their content to consumers.

The controversial proposal, however, is opposed by consumer groups and some other Web companies. The White House says nearly four million public comments on the proposal were submitted to the FCC.

The White House adds Obama's proposal will "ensure the network works for everyone - not just one or two companies."

Math, physics, astronomy
are categories for big prizes

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Researchers across the globe in mathematics, physics and astronomy were among the winners of the second annual Breakthrough Prizes, awarded Sunday in San Francisco.

Twelve Breakthrough Prizes were announced at a formal awards gala held in the unofficial capital of the U.S. technology industry, commonly known as Silicon Valley.  Among the winners were two teams of astronomers that discovered that expansion of the universe is accelerating as opposed to slowing down.

Five mathematicians shared the first-ever Breakthrough Prizes in their field, while six scientists shared the Life Sciences Prizes for work on such topics as the regulation of genes and bacterial immunity.

Each of the 12 prizes is worth $3 million.

Sunday's event was hosted by Hollywood comic director-actor Seth McFarlane, with such noted actors as Benedict Cumberbatch, Kate Beckinsale and Cameron Diaz on hand as presenters.

The Breakthrough Prizes were co-founded by Russian billionaire investor Yuri Milner, Google co-founder Sergey Brin, Jack Ma and Cathy Zang of China's online retailer Alibaba and Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg. According to its Web site, the prizes "aim to celebrate scientists and generate excitement about the pursuit of science as a career.”

Hawaiian volcano lava
claims threatened home

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

A stream of lava set a home on fire in a rural Hawaiian town that has been watching a slow-moving flow for months.

The molten rock hit the house Monday in Pahoa, the largest town in the Big Island's mostly agricultural Puna district. The home's residents already had left the house, the first destroyed by the lava stream.

The lava from Kilauea volcano entered the town Oct. 26. Its leading edge remains about 180 meters from central Pahoa.

Pahoa firefighters will let a structure hit by lava burn, but will fight fires that spread or threaten other structures.

A relative of the homeowners was planning to be at the site to watch the house burn.  Officials made arrangements for homeowners to watch any homes burn as a means of closure and to document the destruction for insurance purposes.

Many residents have evacuated or are ready to leave if necessary.

Child mortality rates dip
in world, U.N. report says

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

Child mortality rates have dropped to record lows in developing countries. Improved government action and simple protective health measures are narrowing the mortality gap in children under 5 years old between the richest and the poorest families.

According to the United Nations, the number of deaths in children under 5 has dropped from 12.7 million in 1990 to about 6.3 million in 2013, or about 17,000 deaths per day.

Stanford University population health analyst Eran Bendavid credits things like malarial bed nets and oral rehydration salts, which are used to treat diarrheal diseases in children in low- and moderate-income countries.

“The poorest of the poor - we’re talking about countries where people live on $1 or $2 per day on average...have seen enormous declines in mortality. Their children are surviving at rates they have never seen before in those contexts,” said Bendavid.

Bendavid led a study by researchers at Stanford’s School of Medicine that used demographic and health surveys to analyze child mortality in 54 countries. The research involved surveys of 1.2 million women in more than 929,000 families.

Investigators compared child mortality data between 2000 and 2007 with data from 2008 to 2012.

They found mortality rates for children under-5 declined 4.3 deaths per 1,000 live births among poor families, 3.36 deaths per 1,000 among middle-income households and 2.06 deaths per 1,000 among the wealthiest families.

Bendavid said that in countries with good governance, international aid can flow to people who need it. However, in nations rife with corruption and lawlessness, the number of pediatric deaths increased during the same period.

“If you have Boko Haram in northern Nigeria, if you have situations now like you have in Pakistan where aid workers are being vilified and attacked for providing vaccines, you know, where you have a governance that really has no ability to provide the basic conditions for health to work, basic safety, the legitimacy for health workers to go and do what they need to do, then even those simple and basic and easy interventions can’t be accomplished,” said Bendavid.

Countries that have seen a significant improvement in the child mortality gap between rich and poor include Bangladesh, Bolivia, Ivory Coast, Egypt and Ghana. The study on child mortality was published in the journal Pediatrics.

Real estate-related services (paid category)

Real estate brokers and agents (paid category)

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

Remax logo
Re/Max, the Pacific coast expert

Re/Max offers comprehensive Costa Rica Real Estate, vacation rental and relocation services. Our award-winning team is the largest in the country, and can show you the best lifestyle and financial investment properties in the most desirable locations including prime real estate in Tamarindo, Langosta, Conchal, Flamingo, Pinilla, Coco, Hermosa and Playa Panama.  Give us a call in Costa Rica at 506-2653-0073, or toll free from the U.S. and Canada 1-800-385-5930. Re/Max, the name you trust for the finest real estate services in Costa Rica.

Moran Arenal
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
Moran logo

Costa Rica,

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

Visit our Web Site:

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

Español calls: (Luis G. Jiménez)  Phone:   
(506) 8707-4016
Grecia 884
Beautiful large house in Grecia, Costa Rica, with the best fresh natural weather. The property includes 9 challets and and 12.000 m2 of land,  1,000 m2 of construction. Price $498.000. Click HERE!
Grecia 881
Beautiful house in Grecia, Costa Rica,  2 kilometers from the city.   340 m2 of land.
Price $135.000. Click
Grecia 883
Beautiful  House in Grecia, Costa Rica,  1.5  kilometers from the city.   220 m2 of land. Price $138.000.  Click HERE!
  Send us your request to our email:

Real estate for sale (paid category)

Maneul Antonio
Manuel Antonio Estates focuses on building vacation homes for clients within Manuel Antonio Estates and Palmas Pacifica. We take care of the details from permits and design to supervision of construction and management of the rentals, if needed. We provide privacy and security, and our gated community offers shared common recreational facilities, beautiful landscaping and parking areas. Our homes and lots are located just minutes from the most beautiful beaches in Costa Rica. If you've ever considered buying a second home, just minutes from the beach, do not hesitate, if you have any questions or would like to request more information please take full advantage of our Costa Rica real estate services and contact us today!
Manuel Antonio Estates    1 800 346-9724  (506) 8815-9606.

Ciudad Colon
Great Deal!! Apartment in condo with pool and extensive green areas:
Ciudad Colón, San José $112,000
The apartment has a master bedroom with a large ensuite bathroom with bath tub, and a smaller second bedroom/office  with air conditioning. It has a second full bathroom, living/dining room, laundry room with hot water tank and storage area. The kitchen comes with granite countertops, a breakfast bar and new dishwasher. It has 82 m2 of construction. 2 balconies with beautiful views of the river and mountains. Private parking for one car. Elevator and a well presented reception area. Located in a very quiet and private neighborhood just 400 meters from the centre of Ciudad Colón. Within minutes to all major amenities in Santa Ana and Escazú. Easy access to the beach (less than 1.5 hrs).  24-hour security, visitor parking, pool, extensive and lush green areas, BBQ area, children’s playground and its own water treatment plant. Contact (506) 6022-9294 or 6022-9967, for further info or to arrange a viewing.

Suenos montage
Outrageous blowout prices on oceanfront condos in Los Sueños!

Located in the private Bay Residence enclave overlooking the Pacific Ocean in Los Sueños Resort and Marina, there are three gorgeous units available at unbelievable bargain pricing from $589,000.  All of these beautiful units are three bedrooms and two baths, 2,200 square feet, fully furnished and ready to move in.  Development includes a gym, access to 3 pools, jacuzzis, BBQ areas and the Beach Club.  If you’ve always wanted to own in Los Sueños, now is the time!  Contact  or call 8702-0778.  From U.S. call 209-482-1788.

Top floor unit: $649,000   Second floor unit: $675,000  Garden unit: $589,000

Newly available in Roca Verde
Well-built home of 215 m2, 3 bedrooms, two bath on 1,150 m2 of lot, with attractive rock retaining wall, carport, and a pool. Indoors there are high, vaulted hardwood ceiling, bright rooms, a laundry room.  The floor is ceramic tile in pastel shades. $247,000. Photos: 2446-5587.

San Ramon
Mountain home w/million dollar view near San Ramón
Beautiful home in the mountains near San Ramón with 180-degree view of the gulf of Nicoya.7 miles from San Ramón, 1 mile from Interamericana highway. 3,200 ft. elevation so temp is 65 to 75 year around. Electric gate, private drive. house built in 2010. 2 bedrooms, 1 baths, appliances included. High-speed internet iinstalled, Direct TV via sling box on Internet. $199,000 Contact   Check out slide show HERE!

Condo montage
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 houses
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-story, 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-story 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!


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


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.

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

Business for sale or lease (paid category)
call center
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.

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

Real estate services
Real estate for sale
Businesses for sale

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

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

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission. 
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

A.M. Costa Rica's
sixth news page

San José, Costa Rica, Tuesday, Nov. 11, 2014, Vol. 14, No. 223
Real Estate
About us

News from the BBC up to the minute

BBC news feeds are disabled on archived pages.

Latin news from the BBC up to the minute
Rights commission finds for journalist

Special to A.M. Costa Rica

The Inter-American Commission on Human Rights decided to adopt a precautionary measure in favor of Honduran journalist Julio Ernesto Alvarado, who was ordered by a Honduran court to stop working as a journalist for 16 months after he reported on alleged wrongdoing attributed to a dean of the Honduras Autonomous National University.

The Inter-American Commission took the action last week, calling on the Honduran government to suspend the court order and abstain from carrying out any action to disqualify the journalist until the commission reaches a decision on the petition it had received on the case. The commission declared that the matter comprised the “serious aspects, urgency and irreparable harm” that justified its action.

The Inter American Press Association today welcomed the decision. Its President Gustavo Mohme, editor of the Lima, Peru, newspaper La República, expressed his “satisfaction with a decision whereby the Inter-American system reactivates the protection of journalists who tend to be silenced by libel suits brought by public officials.”

“This decision,” Mohme added, “creates important precedents for judges to better review lawsuits that seek to subject journalists to prior censorship when they are investigating and reporting on corruption in areas of public interest, as occurs in Peru and Brazil, among several other countries.”

On Oct. 4 the Inter American Press Association deplored the punishment of the journalist and criticized the lack of commitment by the government of Honduras regarding promises made to decriminalize libel, calumny and defamation offenses.

“To prevent journalists from doing their work is equivalent to taking us back to the most absurd forms of censorship that used to be practiced in past centuries,” said Claudio Paolillo, chairman of the organization's Committee on Freedom of the Press and Information and editor of the Montevideo, Uruguay, weekly Búsqueda.

The commission received the request for precautionary measures to be taken in favor of the journalist May 29, claiming violation of his freedom of expression and legal guarantees and protection, citing the American Convention on Human Rights.

“After reviewing the allegations submitted by the petitioners the commission considers that the information presented shows prima facie that the rights of Mr. Julio Ernesto Alvarado are seriously threatened and at urgent risk of irreparable harm,” the commission said in its precautionary measure.

During a 2006 broadcast of the television program “Mi Nación” (My Nation) by Globo TV, hosted by Alvarado, two Honduras Autonomous National University professors, Guillermo Ayes and Gustavo Villela, accused economic sciences dean Belinda Flores Padilla of arbitrary actions and of having been “implicated in the trafficking of university degrees,” “found in a rigged master’s degree,” and involved “in the award of rigged degrees.” Dean Flores Padilla then sued Alvarado in court, accusing him of defamation and libel.

A court of first instance ruled in favor of Alvarado, warning that the information about Dean Flores Padilla had not been made up by him but rather that he had limited himself to “reporting what was said in a report by a committee investigating irregularities in the granting of certain benefits to students at the university.”

But in 2011 Dean Flores Padilla filed an appeal and in December 2013 the Supreme Court reversed the lower court’s ruling and declared that Alvarado had “exceeded the normal limits in the exercise of press freedom” and had intentionally caused harm to the reputation of the dean. The Supreme Court then sentenced Alvarado to 16 months in prison, and an additional punishment of “deprivation of his civil rights and special disqualification” for the same period.

Alvarado appealed, and in April of this year an enforcement judge granted him freedom by commuting the prison sentence with a fine and also acquitted him of the additional penalties. The following month Dean Flores Padilla appealed this ruling and in August the appeals court admitted the former dean’s request. In September, Alvarado was notified that the ban on his work as a journalist remained in force.

Alvarado last month filed a procedural complaint with the supreme court, arguing that his constitutional rights were being violated. But the court has not yet responded.

In its decision the human rights commission warned that the information that had given rise to Alvarado’s conviction “is related to a matter that presumably was of public interest, correctly, on the suitability of a person for holding public office.” In addition the commission said, “the journalist was not held to have been the author of the information considered offensive to the reputation of the public official in question, rather that he was considered to have been limited to transmitting statements or information by third parties on his television program.”

“The use of criminal court mechanisms to punish statements concerning matters of public interest, and especially about public officials or politicians, violates Article 13 of the American Convention, as there is no imperative social interest to justify it and “it is unnecessary and disproportionate,” the commission said.

The agency recalled that “to have recourse to criminal court tools to punish especially protected statements is not only a direct limitation of freedom of expression but also can be considered as an indirect method of restriction of expression for their intimidating, silencing and inhibiting effects on the free flow of ideas, opinions, and information of all kinds.”

“The gravity of the situation arises from the imposition of a secondary punishment capable of preventing the journalist from exercising his freedom of expression for a period of 16 months, which could amount to a situation of prior censorship,” the commission said

“This conviction would have a silencing effect regarding all people and particularly journalists, who would be subjected to a constant self-censorship before reporting on something that could offend the reputation of those occupying public office. This could compromise the freedom of expression of Honduras society altogether,” it declared.

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

Real Estate
About us
What we published this week: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday Earlier
The contents of this Web site are copyrighted by Consultantes Río Colorado S.A. 2014 and may not be reproduced anywhere without permission.
Abstracts and fair use are permitted.  Check HERE for details

From Page 7:

U.S. becoming aggressive fighting corruption

By the A.M. Costa Rica wire services

The White House has rolled out its Global Anti-Corruption Agenda, a multi-faceted approach to addressing illicit activities around the globe.

The White House issued a statement in late September that reflects President Barack Obama’s global initiative to fight and reduce corruption both domestically and among nations doing business with the United States.

“The United States views corruption as a growing threat to the national security of our country and allies around the world,” the statement said.

The administration’s centerpiece is the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act in force since 1977.  The White House says that in the past five years, the act has produced more than 50 convictions of corporations worldwide, along with the convictions of a similar number of CEOs and other high level corporate officials.  The White House says the act has also caused the imposition of fines of some $3 billion.

“Part of the reason for the government’s increased crackdown on FCPA violators may have something to do with the state of affairs overseas,” said Jennifer Dowell Armstrong, an attorney with the firm McDonald Hopkins. “China faces extremely grave corruption issues, as do many other nations in both the developed and developing world, including Western European countries. Rather than sitting on the sidelines, the U.S. government is addressing corruption by teaming up with foreign governments to combat the threat.”

Other steps the Obama administration says it is taking includes addressing the use of shell corporations to hide and move the proceeds of corruption.  Another is a call on Congress to tighten laws on money laundering, especially concerning funds derived from illicit activities abroad. Included as well is an initiative to make asset recovery in corruption cases more robust.

While the administration’s Global Anti-Corruption Agenda has drawn praise, some analysts point out that its main enforcement vehicle, the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act, is not being used to its full abilities.

“The U.S. government largely enforces the FCPA through non-prosecution agreements, deferred prosecution agreements, and other vehicles (such as, with increasing frequency, SEC administrative settlements not subjected to any meaningful scrutiny” wrote Mike Koehler in, which monitors activities associated with the White House anti-corruption efforts. The SEC is the Securities and Exchange Commission.

“The White House is emphasizing the quantity of FCPA enforcement over the quality of FCPA enforcement,” Koehler wrote. “However, in a legal system based on the rule of law, quality of enforcement [the size and the scope of cases] should take priority over quantity.” That is the the size and the scope of cases should take priority over the  number of cases pursued

The Global Anti-Corruption Agenda integrates foreign policy as a malfeasance-fighting tool. Under the section “Working with other countries to promote anti-corruption, transparency, and open government,” the administration says the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development are devoting $1 billion yearly promoting anti-corruption and other good governance programs in other nations.

The White House Fact Sheet states that Washington “will hold responsible governments that tolerate or commit corrupt practices in contravention of international norms, including by adjusting our bilateral relations, and advising our businesses and investors accordingly.”

Matthew Stephenson, who writes for, writes that if this is put into practice, it would be a departure from the past.

“Though the United States routinely condemns corruption,” he wrote, “I’m not aware of any cases in which another country’s failure to adhere to anti-corruption norms has had broader collateral consequences for U.S. foreign policy toward that country.”

The White House says the administration will draw up a national action plan to promote and provide incentives to domestic and overseas businesses to be transparent and proactively fight illicit conduct. The White House says its plan will closely follow both anti-corruption principles followed by the United Nations.

Accountability and compliance groups are calling on President Obama to use two international summits, Asia Pacific Economic Cooperation and the Group of 20 Summit in Brisbane, Australia, this month to press world leaders to adopt best anti-corruption practices in both government and private commercial activities.

Frank Vogl, one of the co-founders of the good governance group Transparency International, calls for governments to take legislative and other actions to enforce proper official and commercial behavior.

“The forces of corruption in many countries,” Vogl wrote in The Huffington Post, “be they organized crime, violent gangs, or government officials, feel increasingly threatened as the anti-corruption warriors build powerful public support and find mid-level officials – and sometimes even senior ones – willing to stand up and join the cause.”