The security ministry is warning firms and individuals to hire only guard companies that are registered and legal.
The Dirección de Servicios de Seguridad Privados went so far as to say that those persons who hire unregistered guard companies would be committing a crime. The agency also said that the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social also would hold them responsible.
The agency said that a list of registered firms is available on its Web site.
The agency periodically cracks down on security firms. Some have been put out of business because they had incomplete paperwork on file or because they cheated on certain aspects of firearms registration.
A large part of the security firm management is paperwork. Each armed guard has to be up to date with weapons permits, vehicle license and similar. And the firm has to have all these documents on file.
Frequently Fuerza Pública officers find guards who are carrying a weapon without a permit.