San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Puntarenas mayor arrested on corruption charges

The Prosecutor’s Office confirmed Wednesday the arrest of Puntarenas Mayor Rafael Ángel Rodríguez Castro, who is under investigation on three counts of influence peddling and one count of dereliction of duty.

Prosecutors accused the mayor of granting a direct concession without public bidding for the construction of a municipal building with bathrooms and toilet services; authorizing a construction company to continue works without charging a fine of ₡3.9 million ($7,700) for failing to pay the required building permits on time; revoking an order from the vice mayor that lowered the salary of one of the mayor’s advisers after the adviser failed to show up for work for nine days while Rodríguez was on sick leave; and allowing the dismantling of a gym donated by the Institute of Pacific Ports to the municipality, although the mayor was obliged to provide for security and maintenance by law.

The prosecution will request preventive measures against Rodríguez while the investigation continues.

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