Trial to spotlight official complicity in trafficking

A trial starting today is expected to shed light on a network that smuggles illegal immigrants into the country.

Two Fuerza Pública officers and two women are the accused in the case that will open in the  Tribunal de Juicio de Corredores. The policemen were identified by the last names of  Montoya Gómez and Mora Otoya. They were working in the San Vito and Río Claro police stations in the southern part of Costa Rica.

The women were identified by the last names of  Muñoz González and Jiménez Moya. The accused are suspects in a criminal organization that aided the entry of foreigners in exchange for money. In the case before the courts, the smuggled individuals are two women from Colombia who each paid $500 to get safely across the country’s southern border, said the Poder Judicial.

The women were supposed to end up at a house in  Campo Tres de Agua Buena in Coto Brus, according to a summary of the court case. The charge is human trafficking.

The crime alleged took place March 16, 2010, in Paso Canoas on the border with Panamá.

Other officers broke up the smuggling when they stopped a vehicle with the illegal immigrants near  Buenos Aires de Puntarenas. Costa Rica requires that visitors from Colombia obtain visa from the country’s consulates there.

Official complicity in bringing in foreigners to Costa Rica is nothing new. A.M. Costa Rica reported the story two years ago of two female prostitutes from the Dominican Republic who said they paid part of the bribe for visas at the Costa Rican consulate there and paid the remainder at a back door of the Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería once they got to San José.

Central European and Russian prostitutes have been trafficked to the country by criminal rings who characterized them as students coming here to learn Spanish and get them student visas.

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