Police sweep includes 10 centers of prostitution in metro area

Fuerza Pública officers and volunteers of the Fundación Rahab went into 10 centers of prostitution Saturday and ended up helping the immigration police issue citations to 14 foreigners whose paperwork was not in order, they said.

The visits to city locations such as these are a continuing effort by the police, supported by judicial agents and the traffic and immigration police.

The law enforcement effort began at noon Saturday and continued until midnight. They said they found one person with two homemade firearms and located a crackhouse in Los Guidos where 20 persons were using crack cocaine.

In all police at various points in the metro area checked out 534 persons, 64 vehicles and 58 motorcyclists. They also found a man carrying a 9-mm. pistol that had been reported stolen from a security company, they said. Another man was detained because he was the subject of an outstanding warrant alleging robbery, they said.

Traffic officers issued 89 tickets and took the license plates off 14 vehicles and confiscated 16 motorcycles that were suspected of being stolen.

Prostitution is not prosecuted in Costa Rica, but police officers usually check out those found in such establishments.

The Fundación Rahab volunteers usually accompany the police and conduct interviews with the women found in the locations where prostitution is solicited. They seek to encourage them to find alternative means of employment.

A.M. Costa Rica has questioned the legality of private individuals accompanying police on what amounts to raids and then forcing persons there to participate in an interview and fill out a questionnaire. The foundation is financed in part by the U.S. government.

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