Costa Rica prosecutor wants 7 years of prison time for ex-president

February 8, 2011

SAN JOSÉ – Costa Rica’s Prosecutor’s Office asked judges for a seven-year prison sentence yesterday for former President Miguel Ángel Rodríguez, saying he helped organize a plan to obtain unauthorized payments from French telecommunications company Alcatel.

Prosecutor Criss González asked judges to sentence Rodríguez to five years in prison for aggravated corruption and an additional two years for illegal profiteering. The prosecutor also wants Rodríguez banned from public office for 12 years.

Rodriguez, who led the Central American country from 1998 to 2002, is on trial for allegedly receiving more than $800,000 in illegal payments from the French telecommunications company in exchange for helping it receive a $149 million government contract to provide 400,000 cell phone lines in 2001.

Prosecutors said Rodríguez, who belonged to the Social Christian Unity Party (PUSC), had his top advisor, José Antonio Lobo, accept a $2 million commission from Alcatel in exchange for the 400,000 cell phone lines, and the two allegedly agreed to split the kickback.

In addition to Rodríguez, prosecutors also asked for jail time for eight other defendants, including public officials, consultants, lawyers, and the then-representative of Alcatel in Costa Rica, Edgar Valverde.

You may be interested

Of snow, kindness and Northern Lights: a Costa Rican in Manitoba, Canada
Please Send Coffee!
1292 views
Please Send Coffee!
1292 views

Of snow, kindness and Northern Lights: a Costa Rican in Manitoba, Canada

Gustavo Díaz Cruz - December 14, 2017

My mom named me Gustavo Adolfo. I was born in Puntarenas, next to the sea, but my home was in…

Response to disaster: aid successes, struggles in post-Maria Puerto Rico
Weather
1222 views
Weather
1222 views

Response to disaster: aid successes, struggles in post-Maria Puerto Rico

John McPhaul - December 13, 2017

As Costa Rica joins many other nations in looking back upon the horrendous 2017 hurricane season, longtime Tico Times contributor…

Looking back at Hurricane Maria: the initial impact
Weather
2083 views
Weather
2083 views

Looking back at Hurricane Maria: the initial impact

John McPhaul - December 12, 2017

As Costa Rica joins many other nations in looking back upon the devastating 2017 hurricane season, longtime Tico Times contributor…