The typical booty in a street robbery is a cell telephone. Sometimes the robbery escalates to murder when a victim resists.
For this effort, the robber or murderer is likely to get 5,000 colons for the telephone from a dealer in stolen goods. Some of these businesses that purchase stolen cell phones are open 24 hours a day for the convenience of robbers.
With the increase in value of the cell telephones, users have become bigger targets.
The fencing operations can resell the devices for a handsome
profit, and communications officials have been hard pressed to eliminate the practice. Frequently the only item of value carried by a robbery victim is the cell telephone.
Today telecom companies will announce plans to make the stolen phones less valuable. The companies are creating a blacklist of stolen telephone devices that will be circulated throughout the country and the world to prevent the reactivation and use.
The companies involved are Claro, Telefónica, Tuyo Móvil y Fullmóvil and the Instituto Costarricense de Electricidad.
The companies will be signing an agreement under the auspices of the Superintendencia de Telecomunicaciones.