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Friday, January 29th, 2016  |  USD: Buy 531.29 / Sell 543.92
20 years

More than 15% of Costa Ricans were victims of robbery in 2012

February 27th, 2014 ( The Central American Institute for Fiscal Studies (ICEFI) has released a study on robbery in Central America, and Costa Rica ranked third, behind only Guatemala and Honduras, based on numbers from the year 2012, the latest available.


The study showed that 15.4% of the Costa Rican population were victims of robbery or burglary in 2012 alone.  In Guatemala, the figure was reported as 17.3%, while 16.1% of Hondurans were robbery victims in 2012.


Costa Rica had more robberies than El Salvador (12.5%), Nicaragua (10.7%) and Panama (5.5%) during the same year.


In Central America as a whole, about 13% of the population were victimized in 2012.


Jonathan Menkos, executive director at ICEFI, said even more worrying is the fact that 50% of cases in Costa Rica involved violence.


According to Menkos, lack of economic growth, inequality, stagnation in social mobility, impunity, and easy access to guns and drugs are factors in insecurity.

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Robbery victims in 2012

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  • roberto

    A female friend of my son in high school was robbed after volleyball practice yesterday. My son was assaulted walking home from school in Heredia last October. Now I drive him to and from classes.
    What about the killing of Kurt Heigis? It has been more than 2 weeks…any suspects? News?

  • Douglas Hotchkiss

    costa rica is getting to be a real shithole.. i dont know what will change the situation. vigilantism maybe.

  • mhogan

    The excuses for crime are bs. The justice system encourages criminal activity. Costa Rica has given up its will to punish evil. You want to blame the economy, well the government created this economy of liberalism where they believe in redistributing wealth instead of creating it–so let’s put the blame where it belongs. Our politicians so loved the poor that they are creating thousands more — not the least of which is making carbon slaves out of us for the sake of green romanticism. Continuing on this path is lunacy (richer countries than Costa Rica have discovered they cannot afford it, but our arrogant leaders will surely kill this economy very shortly — it’s already dying a slow death, or not so slowly if you read the current borrowing pattern).

    • maitai

      Completely right. The problem is not economics, its simply there is ongoing crime without punishment.

      The criminals know the jails are overflowing, so they don’t fear prison as nine times out of ten, they won’t go to prison, and will be let off with a warning..which they don’t heed anyway.

      The poor victim is the one that gets victimized twice, once by the criminals, and once by the courts.

      CR is not safe anymore, plain and simple. If being in the same camp as Honduras and Guatemala does not wake Costa Rica up, nothing will.

  • Frank Castle

    I was last in Costa Rica in 2012 visiting my Mom who lives above San Jose in the mountains. As part of my trip, I took a bus trip all the way to Panama City. While in Panama, specifically David, it felt so relaxed. You could go to the corner store, buy a beer and walk down the street with it with no problem. The people were so nice whether in the Parque Central, on the bus and at the Panama Canal. The taxi drivers were courteous and helpful and I never felt threatened. Panama has more armed police and guards which may have something to do with this. I didn’t see any of those young kids or men who asked for money to guard your car either like in Costa Rica. To be fair, if you leave the Central Valley and go down to the Southern Zone, it seems more like Panama. They still seem to have more theft than in Panama though.

  • El Torito

    The percentage is really much higher as anyone who has had business with a lawyer in this country has been the victim of theft! Mhogan nailed it in her assessment of the situation.

  • disgusted

    I was in Park Nacional near the Tribunial. Walking when two guys came towards me I zig and zag away they followed. I saw a policeman standing at the corner I fast walked his way he turned away I said in Spanish to help me .. He pretended did not hear me. I got my pepper spray turned towards the 2 guys said get the F@@@ away.. Yelling loudly policeman never looked. I sprayed and ran past him. Called him a name. Lucky Taxi guy helped. This was like 4pm. This is why the police are called SAPOS here so many worthless unless they are in packs of 10 or 20. Crime here is much higher than 15% double that number.

  • Pesobill

    Yep , Costa Ripoff has been off my list for along time !!

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