Trio who targeted tourists given terms in prison

Three thieves who stole luggage from a Norwegian couple on a bus in February have been given jail terms. Two got 10 months, and one got eight months.

The case was settled in an abbreviated process because the trio were caught red-handed as they got off the bus in Ciudad Quesada. The Norwegian tourists were heading to La Fortuna from San José, said the Poder Judicial.

The crooks were identified by the last names of López Gaitán, Martínez Rivas and Díaz Díaz. Díaz got the lighter sentence.

The three boarded the bus when it made a routine stop in Ciudad Quesada. While one blocked the view of the Norwegians, a second grabbed luggage, the trial panel was told.

Agents were following the men when they were on a bus. They had been the subject of at least 11 complaints, mostly by tourists. La Fortuna is near the Arenal volcano. Agents recovered documents belonging to the Norwegian tourist and her portable computer and skin diving equipment, they said. Police were able to interview the tourist.

At the time of the arrests, judicial agents said that Díaz Díaz was the subject of a warrant issued in Liberia for aggravated theft. Martínez has a record of 14 arrests for similar crimes, and López has been turned over to prosecutors 19 times, they said.

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