Former President’s Trial Postponed Until Monday

April 16, 2010

The long-awaited trial against former president Miguel Angel Rodríguez was pushed back again on Wednesday, after one of the accused was rushed to the hospital for an appendix operation.

The trial, scheduled for Wednesday morning, was postponed until Monday to allow Rodrigo Méndez, a former Costa Rican Electricity Institute (ICE) employee, time to recover.

The case involves over $2.5 million in bribes and nine total suspects. It began in 2000 when French telecommunications firm Alcatel allegedly influenced a bid to win an ICE cell phone contract. Former president Rodríguez (1998-2002) is accused of accepting more than $600,000 in payments.

In 1994, the former president was arrested upon his return from New York after renouncing his post as secretary general of the Organization of American States (OAS).

Eduardo Araya, one of the former president’s lawyers, told EFE news service that he feels “optimistic and has faith” that at the end of the process Rodríguez will be completely absolved.

Rodríguez told the Associated Press that he hoped to demonstrate his innocence, but feared he would be convicted.

Rodríguez’ trial follows on the heels of that of former president Rafael Angel Calderón, who was convicted in October 2009 on charges of embezzlement.

Calderón, who charged was sentenced to five years in prison and a half million dollar fine, is currently appealing the decision in the Inter-American Court of Human Rights.

–Chrissie LongCH

You may be interested

Adaptive surfing, part III: Riding the waves with Noah
sports
59 views
sports
59 views

Adaptive surfing, part III: Riding the waves with Noah

Ellen Zoe Golden - May 25, 2018

Part III in a series on adaptive surfing in Costa Rica. Read Part I, about the country's association for disabled…

It’s frog orgy season
Environment and Wildlife
1162 views
Environment and Wildlife
1162 views

It’s frog orgy season

Lindsay Fendt - May 25, 2018

The rainy season is upon us. For many of us that means hiding indoors for the next few months, but for Costa…

Costa Rica’s guilty voters
No Sugar Please
121 views
No Sugar Please
121 views

Costa Rica’s guilty voters

Álvaro Murillo - May 25, 2018

By what I have done, and by what I have left undone. A relative of mine is 70 years old…