Agents of Costa Rica’s Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ) raided early Friday the house of ex-footballer Rolando Fonseca as part of an investigation over two trips President Laura Chinchilla made on a private jet allegedly linked to drug traffickers and protected by the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency (DEA).
OIJ also raided the house of Colombian businessman Gabriel Morales Fallón just a few blocks from Fonseca’s home in Santa Ana, also southwest of the capital.
Fonseca has said he works as a private consultant for the Colombian firm THX Energy, owners of the plane, and he was the one who requested that the aircraft be loaned to the president.
Fallón, who worked as THX consultant, is suspected of having links with Colombian drug trafficker Luis Carlos Ramírez, also known as “Chupeta,” arrested by the DEA in Brazil.
The Colombian daily El Tiempo and Costa Rican online news site crhoy.com both reported that Fallón, under investigation in Colombia for suspected money laundering and links to drug cartels, was protected from prosecution in Colombia and placed in Costa Rica by the DEA. In an interview earlier this week with Colombian news media, Chinchilla did not deny that allegation.
U.S. Ambassador to Costa Rica Anne S. Andrew, when asked if the United States government is partly responsible for the ongoing scandal, told The Tico Times, “absolutely not.”
She did not comment on the specific details of the case and said she had not spoken to Chinchilla about the matter.
The OIJ also raided the ex-footballer’s offices in Escazú. Last week Fonseca appeared before the prosecution as a witness in the investigation.
The scandal, described as “an error” by Chinchilla, has already cost Communications Minister Francisco Chacón, Presidency Vice Minister Mauricio Boraschi – who was also director of Costa Rica’s Office of Intelligence and Security, as well as the country’s anti-drug commissioner, and presidential adviser Irene Pacheco their jobs.
In an interview on Colombian TV, Fallón denied the allegations that he is linked to drug cartels.