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Supreme Court reverses portions of Domestic Violence law

May 23

On Thursday November 13th, the Sala IV constitutional court in a split decision overturned two key provisions of a controversial Domestic Violence law designed to protect women. The Sala IV is Costa Rica’s equivilant of the U.S. Supreme Court.

The first section overturned, provided six months to 2 years prison sentence for anyone who attacks or physically harms a wife or live-in companion when the event was too minor to be handled by other criminal laws. For anyone who understands email managment, this is Costa Rica’s version of the “catch-all” email address. If you cannot find what to do with it, send it to the “catch-all” account. For those who follow human rights abuses, this law when enacted provided prosecutors with an easy way to convict people without burdening them with rules of evidence.

The second section overturned, provided the same sentencing rules for someone who insults, devalues, frightens or embarrasses a wife or female companion in public or in private. If you grew up in a family where older brothers or sisters harrassed you, you might describe yourself as having “thick skin.” When this law was enacted, womans groups hailed it as the Holy Grail for woman in Costa Rica. “Years of abuse endured by Costa Rican woman has now been addressed” they proclaimed. What this law and the other associated with the act, was to provide woman with the ability to harrass men without burden of evidence. Without any evidence against them, men were being dragged out of their homes, thrown in jail and losing custody of their children.

At the time, the unconstitutional issues related to this law were raised but here in Costa Rica the men lacked the “cajones” to challenge it and the politics of the day prevailed.

The Sala IV stipulated that its decision was to be made retroactive, meaning that any men convicted under the crime will go free if they are in prison. The court said that the law set out a series of penalties that violate legal principles that are established for all persons. Something that I addressed in a letter to the Tico Times and AMCostaRica news organizations, which was violation of the human rights treaty that Costa Rica signed here in San Jose, Costa Rica in the1980′s. Their response was, we are sure the Sala IV reviewed the law prior to enacting. Guess what guys? Wrong! Unfortunately, the Sala IV stopped short of addressing the gender dicrimination of this law.

We look forward to the day when this entire law is reversed and the existing laws are enforced. Enforcement should have been the womans groups focus rather than pushing for another law. If their focus would have been on existing laws designed to protect woman, then they would have expressed outrage at how the judicial system here in Costa Rica does not work and has no real teeth.

AMCostaRica.com stated “Some women used this law to have their husbands or male companions evicted from their home for months.” Wow, that is an understatement!

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3 Responses

  1. GARY CHRISTENSEN’S FANTASTIC ENGLISH & TV NEWS PROGRAM Broadcast Live From San Jose, Costa Rica Mondays – 9 pm (MST) Channel 54 News Costa Rica.
    Internet GarysTVShow Canal 54 http://j.mp/kPkpu1

    National Berkley Laboratory Washington Post
    Brooking Institute American Enterprise Institute Georgetown University Financial Times CIDH Mercury News
    American Chamber of Commerce Stanford University

    Fotoreportaje: (Oscar Arias – Laura Chinchilla) Institutional coup d’état in Costa Rica
    Terror and Extortion. The Presidential Police – La DIS
    http://tinyurl.com/GolpeDeEstado

    “Aquí hubo un golpe de estado, aquí tuvimos por unas horas a un dictadorzuelo (Laura Chinchilla e Oscar Arias)” http://tinyurl.com/dictadorzuelo

    May 23, 2011
    Dear Ladies and Gents

    Hear is a more realistic perspective related to your article about President Laura Chinchilla of Costa Rica and her recent visit the U.S..

    I have the only “teaching” English educational/news tv/ Human Rights advocay program in Costa Rica and Central America. We have been broadcasting for more than 3 years.

    I write to you regarding your upcoming visit by President Laura Chinchilla of Costa Rica.

    We find that it may be in your best interest that you have a clear understanding of whom you will be hosting and what she represents here in Costa Rica.

    Laura Chinchilla and Oscar Arias for the last 5-6 years have been committing grave constitutional and “flagrante human rights abuses” which is breathtaking in its ruthlessness.

    Through ownership of the judicial system and the media they instigate terror and repression through the use of their secret security apparatus their Presidential Police, La DIS – la Direccion de Inteligencia y Seguridad.

    For a short time last week on Sunday May 1, 2011 these Constitutional violations reached a stunning climax when Laura Chinchilla and Oscar Arias preempted Constitution law and effected a “coup d’état” of the government to perpetuate their continuing reign of power and control through threats and intimidation with usurpation of the Asemblea Legislativa of Costa Rica (Congress).

    Shortly thereafter outraged citizens took to the streets to protest the illegal overthrow of the institutional government , due process and established law to bring an end to what has been termed “the darkest moment in the history of Costa Rica in the last 60 years.”

    But more disturbing are the little known extrapolating Human Rights Abuses ,extortion, blackmail, terror and beatings being persecuted upon the citizens of Costa Rica by the Chinchilla-Arias “Ultra Repressive” secret Presidential police, La DIS.

    The DIS spies out of control and receives its orders “exclusively from the Presidency” from Oscar Arias and Laura Chinchilla.

    These human rights abuses and aberrations of law being formulated and implemented by the Presidency include:

    Money laundering cartel operating in the presidential house,
    Spying and persecution of congressional representatives, the ex- first lady of Costa Rica, journalist – virtually all members of the society.

    Harassment , child pornography and espionage.

    Blackmail and extortion of citizens and businesses.

    “la Policía Presidencial – la DIS de Laura Chinchilla y Oscar Arias espionaje sectores políticos e incluso chantajear a representantes del sector empresarial” http://bit.ly/PrensaDIS

    Recently our program uncovered 300 agents of the Presidential Police-DIS and OIJ (F.B.I.) whose principle function was and still is to intimidate and extort citizens.

    See also La Asamblea Legislativa de la República de Costa Rica.
    The majority of the complaints against the Presidential Police are for extortion. All agents were planted by Arias and Chinchilla. This has not stopped.

    We work closely with and receive our information directly from officials of the O.I.J. – F.B.I., ICE- the Secret Service, the Supreme Court, the Tribunal Courts and with interviews of the victims.

    The private Presidential police force is immune from prosecution and investigation ( no rendir la cuenta) through direct violations of Article 11 of the political Constitution of Costa Rica. The Presidential Police are repeatedly referred to as a danger to democracy.

    This is made possible by the entire media ie: La Nacion, Al Dia, The Republica and court system including the Supreme Court being in the pocket of Oscar Arias/Laura Chinchilla and their political contributors.

    The owners of telecommunications in Costa Rica, la Nación, al Dia, la Republica, Channel 7… are ruled and controlled not by the public and their need for factual information but rather these instruments of public expression are used by Oscar Arias, Rodrigo Arias, Laura Chinchilla, and El Partido Liberación Nacional and the dominating elite to advance their own political expediency, disinformation, lies, money, power and fraud for self enrichment and to cover-up extortion and human rights abuses by their secret Presidential police of terror – La DIS. Human Rights Report

    Truth, moral justice and transparency are the keystones to an all inclusive democratic society.

    Our society bases its perceptions and depends on the media to protect these values as guardians against those who would usurp it.

    There is no one here to protect the citizens from these individuals.
    You may see portions of our investigative reports posted in youtube:

    http://www.youtube.com/user/HumanRightsCostaRica?

    feature=mhum#p/a/u/2/ZHWhO8pLE9U

    Or at http://garychristensenshow.com/home

    Respectfully
    Gary Christensen

    Please Note: All communication goes through the Arias-Chinchilla state police offices.

    All communications of sensitive matter are compromised.
    http://tinyurl.com/Arias-Chinchilla-HR-Abuses

    “los grandes chorizos y actos de corrupción y de malversación de fondos públicos que caracterizaron al Gobierno de los hermanos Arias (y Chinchilla).”

    http://bit.ly/AriasBribes
    La Nacion – Evolution of the circus at its lowest.
    El peligro de la victoria?
    La Nación Editorial

  2. 2
    Editor 

    Gary not sure what your point is in this comment but what you are claiming is nothing new. There is plenty of evidence of the police state. All you need to do is look at the dissenters and see how they are sabotaged or deported.

    Not sure what your goal is but the people of Costa Rica are mostly peaceful and apathetic, it would take another revolution to change the government but there is hardly anyone who has the charisma of Don Pepe Figueres that could lead such a movement.

    In defense of Laura Chinchilla, the presidency in Costa Rica is a joke since once elected they become a lame duck since there is no possibility of a second term therefore no urgency or motivation to reform or even lay the groundwork for real change. Until that happens, it is the ruling parties that keep Costa Rica in chains since the parties are the only continuing entity after the president leaves office.

    Personally I find it offensive that you would even suggest that Laura would be involved in anything close to Child Pornography. If your suggestion is that she is guilty of this because she has not prevented it, then you are very naive. Evil people create child porn, not politicians or public servants. Their lack of response to these abuses is layered in the system and the process itself. So focusing on Laura as the source of this is WRONG, you should focus on the system and its ineptness. Finger pointing is sensationalistic and achieves nothing but publicly embarrassing a human being. That is wrong.

    We leave your comment in its entirety because we believe in free speech in the USA and defend it. However, we do not share your allegations. Contrary we believe the free sharing of information leads to the truth, whether initiated by innuendo, gossip, rumor, slander, etc

  1. 3
    Costa Rica Driving Laws Amended…Again! (via Pingback)

    [...] that the Sala IV got their head straight when they reversed two sections of this law stating it violated the constitutional rights of free [...]

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