October 8th, 2012 – Troubles continue at the PANI (Child Protection Agency) offices in the southern part of the country, as at least 60 case files have revealed signs of misconduct.
PANI’s auditing department said they have conducted an investigation of a group of case files, in which three officials who have since been suspended from the Golfito and San Vito de Coto Brus (PANI) offices, were involved.
A supposed psychologist of the last name Mora is also under investigation for practicing without a license, as it appears she is not actually a psychologist at all. Criminal complaints against her were filed with the Golfito District Attorney’s office, as well as the Fraud department. As a result, several cases handled by Mora are now under investigation.
Currently, the alleged psychologist, as well as the head of the local Golfito office, and two other workers, have been suspended from their duties.
At first, the investigation of the PANI staffers was focused on a case of alleged sexual abuse against three girls who were in PANI custody. However, PANI says other misconduct has since been discovered while investigating the staffers case files.
Marlen del Rio says she was affected by poor decisions made by several officials in the Golfito office. According to the woman, who filed a report in the Public Ministry, the PANI officials used false claims to take her child from her.
The president of Costa Rica, Laura Chinchilla, requested Marielos Hernandez Corella, PANI president, to resign on Friday, to which he obliged.