San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Police crack million-dollar scheme to defraud people in United States

Judicial Investigation Police (OIJ) raided three homes and an office in Escazú Tuesday morning as part of an investigation into a million-dollar fraud and money laundering scheme that targeted people living in the United States, according to a statement from OIJ.

Suspects allegedly called people living in the U.S. to convince them they had won prizes and could collect after depositing U.S. dollars in a Costa Rican bank account. Once they defrauded the victims, the suspects then allegedly laundered the money through two legitimate businesses, a spa and tattoo parlor.

Authorities discovered a makeshift call center in one of the homes, along with three pistols, an AR-15 rifle and $24,000 in cash.

Police arrested two suspects.

Contact Zach Dyer at

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Have we not evolved beyond blaming the victim, Michael?

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Quoting David Hannum, in criticism of P.T. Barnum: “There’s a sucker born every minute”

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