Defrauding wife to cost 10 years

Lawmakers took a step Thursday to increase the criminal penalty for fraud against the female member of couples.

In 2007 when technicians drafted a law establishing crimes against women, the penalty for a man defrauding his companion was set at three years. In contrast, other forms of fraud carry a 10-year prison term.

The fraud against a wife would include hiding assets when the couple splits up and the woman seeks payments for raising children. The Spanish term is  fraude de simulación.

Lawmakers agreed that this measure was discriminatory against women and said the change, when passed a second time and approved by President Luis Guillermo Solís, will provide more protection for women and children.

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