Hospitality industry is on the trail of a petty scammer

A petty con man has come to town and is working his scams on owners and residents of backpacker hostels and small hotels.

Hotel and hostel operators are circulating a photo and a description of the man, and a complaint with the Judicial Investigating Organization was supposed to have been made late Thursday.

The man comes to a hotel or hostel as a guest and befriends guests and staff alike. At one hostel in San Pedro the man ended a two-day stay by offering to provide discount rum.
He took $60 from employees and $40 from guests and vanished, the hostel operator, Jonathan Wingate, said. The man has not been seen since. After checking around, Wingate said he learned the man took $500 from a Spanish couple in Alajuela and $100 from an American couple in San Carlos. Wingate expended a lot of effort to obtain what he believes is a correct identification of the man and a photo.

He said interested parties could contact him at his email address, or by telephone, 8740-2592.

He said the man is about five feet tall, clean-shaven and chubby. Wingate said he thinks that the man has a long history of such petty thefts

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