January 28th, 2013 (InsideCostaRica.com) Judges Grabiela Jara, Hugo Porter and Adriana Tenorio, of the Penal Court of the Second Circuit of San Jose, located in Giocoechea, ordered journalist Vanessa Loaiza, who works for La Nacion , to pay the legal expenses related to a lawsuit brought by Adrian Chinchilla (brother of president, Laura Chinchilla) and Carlos Espinach.
The defamation lawsuit, brought by Espinach and Chinchilla, was started after the former Minister of Transportation, Francisco Jimenez, spoke in August about a presumed “commission” which reviewed matters related to the country’s infrastructure.
After his statements, several legislators, among them Walter Cespedes, stated that this group of consultants, which formed part of Laura Chinchilla’s inner circle, had taken part in the decision-making surrounding the construction of the controversial “Trocha” road on the border with Nicaragua.
However, the plaintiffs refuted this, stating that the former minister, Jimenez, never said anything about such a commission taking part in decisions surrounding the road.
Walter Cespedes was also brought up on charges of defamation.
Alexander Rodriguez, the lawyer representing Chinchilla and Espinach, confirmed that the conciliation hearing that had been scheduled for Monday had been canceled, as the journalist retracted, making the hearing unnecessary.
Since the journalist retracted her initial statements, Chinchilla and Espinach are now freed from responsibility in a lawsuit surrounding the border road, as they had no role in making decisions surrounding it. The judges ordered Loaiza to pay the expenses incurred as part of the legal process, and have freed her from any penal action.
According to Rodriguez, what mattered to him was to clean the names of his clients, not the monetary damages.
“What we wanted was for her to recognize that what she had published was not true,” he said.