San José, Costa Rica, since 1956

Costa Rican lawmakers remove Supreme Court justice accused of rape

All 53 lawmakers present at a Monday session of the Legislative Assembly voted in favor of removing Supreme Court Justice Óscar González Camacho from the bench, just days before González would have retired. The unanimous vote means González now will face a criminal trial on six counts of alleged rape and one count of attempted rape. The victim is one of his former subordinate judges.

González, who was a Civil Court, or Sala I, justice, was admitted Friday at the National Psychiatric Hospital, his daughter said in a note sent Monday morning to Assembly President Henry Mora.

González attempted several times to block Assembly proceedings by filing illness notices as well as 10 separate complaints to the Constitutional Chamber of the Supreme Court, or Sala IV. All of those complaints were dismissed. The Sala IV rejected the last two on Friday.

I’m convinced that all of these moves were attempts to delay the process long enough to retire,” National Liberation Party lawmaker Antonio Álvarez Desanti, a member of the special commission, said on Monday evening. González would have retired from the bench on Aug. 1.

The Chief Prosecutor’s Office had charged González in September 2013, but his removal by lawmakers was required by law in order for criminal proceedings to move forward.

Contact L. Arias at

Log in to comment

Danny Lee Gibson

Based on what I have seen of the corruption with Costa Ricas police and judges — he will have plenty of money in the bank to pay for his defence!

1 0


1 0
Ken Morris

Ah, the psychiatric defense. I get tired of this. It’s very common in the US too, where politicians always go to rehab, although there the politcians usually add a lot about praying for God’s forgiveness and the like. If you medicalize this or wrap it in spiritual redemption garb, it seems to go away. I’m not saying that the guy is guilty or isn’t nuts, but I do wonder whether if by playing the psychiatric card all of his court rulings shouldn’t be thrown out too. If he excuses some stuff on the basis that he was nuts, why should anyone believe that he wasn’t nuts when he did other stuff?

0 0