Savings Unlimited fugitive Milanés arrested in El Salvador

June 20, 2008

Interpol officers arrested international fugitive Luis Milanés yesterday as he attempted to board a flight to Costa Rica at the InternationalAirport in El Salvador, and quickly deported him to this country.

Milanés, a Cuban-American, disappeared in November 2002 with more than $200 million that had been invested in his firm, called Savings Unlimited.

A competitor of the well-known, defunct operation “The Brothers,” run by Luis Enrique and Oswaldo Villalobos, Savings Unlimited brought in a mix of U.S. residents, other foreigners and Costa Ricans.

Luis Enrique similarly disappeared a few months before Milanés, taking an estimated $800 million with him, and is still wanted today. Oswaldo, however, was convicted of illegal financial intermediation last year (TT, June 6).

According to Interpol, Milanés was carrying a Costa Rican passport with the last names Rodríguez Martínez. When questioned by Salvadoran police, Milanés allegedly showed a second, expired identification from Cuba with his real name, Interpol said. A computer check by the officials of that name brought up the international arrest warrant issued Dec. 19, 2002, by San José Criminal Court. 

Milanés was immediately deported to Costa Rica on a Taca flight, landing in Costa Rica at 2:40 pm. Judicial Investigation Police were waiting at the JuanSantamaríaInternationalAirport in San José to arrest Milanés when he arrived.

Milanés, who is facing charges of money laundering, was escorted from the airport in handcuffs. He paused, however, to tell the gathered press that he was innocent and had surrendered to Salvadoran officials voluntarily. 

Milanés’ investment operation, Savings Unlimited, offered investors 3 to 4 percent monthly interest on minimum investments of $5,000.

Milanés was also the head of the casino conglomerate Casinos Europa, which ran Casino Europa, at the Radisson Hotel; Hotel Morazán and its Casino Tropical; Royal Dutch Casino; the Toby Brown hair salons; and ASCIA, a business that imported clothing, electronics and toys, among other goods (TT, July 26, 2002, Dec. 13, 2003).

You may be interested

Costa Rica at a glance: top news from the past week
The Alvarado Administration
94 views
The Alvarado Administration
94 views

Costa Rica at a glance: top news from the past week

The Tico Times - May 21, 2018

Newly inaugurated Costa Rican President Carlos Alvarado is closing in on two weeks on the job. Here are some of…

PHOTOS: International Museum Day in Costa Rica
Arts & Culture
109 views
Arts & Culture
109 views

PHOTOS: International Museum Day in Costa Rica

Mitzi Stark - May 21, 2018

May 18 is International Museum Day, and Costa Rica celebrated with 31 mini-museums all in one at the Casa del…

Costa Rica, Panama refuse to acknowledge Venezuelan election results
Latin America
141 views
Latin America
141 views

Costa Rica, Panama refuse to acknowledge Venezuelan election results

AFP - May 21, 2018

Costa Rica and Panama were two of 14 countries in the Americas to announce they would not acknowledge the results…