Sheldon Haseltine, who has been battling to keep a valuable property on the central Pacific coast near Los Sueños for himself and investors is going back to court today.
This is the second trial related to a video the frustrated Haseltine posted on YouTube. In the video he cited mostly articles published in La Nación but also said that “Can you imagine that the law whose intention was to help the poor campesinos in Costa Rica is being used by rich millionaires to rip off the owners?”
Those who brought the defamation action against Haseltine figured they were the rich millionaires. They are Armando González Fonseca, Fuad Farach Abdalah and Ricardo Jiménez Montealegre, all well known businessmen.
The original trial court awarded the businessmen money damages.
An appeals court panel reversed the verdict for some technical reasons and also said that because the case is in the public interest, truth should be defense.
Haseltine’s lawyer, Horacio Mejías Portuguez, is expected to bring in many more aspects of the case in an effort to show the truth of the video. Hasteltine has been in court on the property case and cases stemming from it for 16 years.
The original case involves squatters invading the land owned by Ivanhoe Investments for which Haseltine is the legal representative. Costa Rican law protects squatters under certain conditions, and the land invader was able to sell out his interest to businessmen.