something smells very fishy

    • Ken Morris

      Only fishy? And here I was looking forward to one of your posts laying out the entire trail of corruption. This looks like a Big Deal to me.

      • SDPUS

        If Baldi is innocent he should get help from USA to prove that and then go after a defamation case. Why would DIS release this information without first arresting him? USA knows most all on Chapo and associates, if Baldi is being framed, then that is where he should go to prove his innocence. And you better believe there is an international political divide as well to all this. Baldi is a pro business right winger, a libertarian of sort. Solis is an Obamacrat left central Prof. DIS is known to be a PLN Political Hit Machine (right leaning institution). That is quite the mix. This tension has been building for a while between these groups. Consider Baldi the Tea Party type infighting against establishment republicans. Solis broke off from PLN and formed the PAC. These are politically complicated relationships. This is a very small country. It is important to find out who is against who here. Right now it looks like a PLN vs Tea Party internal fight. This is bound to get more ugly, as some wealthy and influential families are now in a deep political rift. Alleged cartel ties? Those are very strong words. Eventually the face of corruption will show itself. My guess is that both sides are dirty. And now they are just airing their dirty laundry out for all to see. And in the end, no one gets in trouble. This is the Costa Rican way. Let’s wait and see what comes of this next. A chess game of sorts. Ticos are not very good at chess. They always try to cheat. Eventually that backfires.

        • Ken Morris

          OK, this is what I wanted.

          Your theory though would seem to depend upon assuming that DIS leaked the report intentionally. That could be the case, and since both it and La Nación tend to be in the PLN camp, an intentional leak without an arrest does smell like some infighting is going on in the center-right. If the intent was to unravel a drug and money laundering operation, you’d think that DIS would have remained tight lipped until it made the bust. However, if the intent was merely to embarrass a guy as kind of political payback and a way to control him, a leak makes perfect sense.

          However, what if it was a genuine leak? A Good Samaritan (or clueless staffer) might have given an enterprising reporter the document. And as for Figueres blabbing to La Nación and then denying it, that sounds to me like it could have resulted from a confusion between what is “deep background” and what the paper can run with. Figueres is after all probably buddies with the news people and often blabs informally to them. In fact, it could be that the press wanted to blow the lid off of the DIS investigation in order to derail it for some reason.

          So there are various possible combinations of machinations to consider, as well as the possibility that this was all just a leak and case is above board.

          As for whether or not the fellow is guilty, I would want first to know how much money he was born to or earned early on. Anybody with a helicopter and a “number of high-end vehicles for his personal use” surely isn’t living off earnings from a hotel. I don’t care how little he pays the maids, that business doesn’t buy helicopters. I’m pretty sure that if we knew the source of his money we’d have a darn good idea whether or not he’s guilty.

          This said, while Ticos may not be very good at chess, they are experts at delaying their moves for years–and then if they make a bad one spending years in court hoping to be able to take it back. It’s not the astuteness of the moves that wins the game here, but how long the game can be prolonged without a winner or loser emerging.

          Speaking of which, do you happen to play chess? I do a bit and am half looking for an opponent, though the search is complicated by the difficulty of finding one at about my level. I’m not very good, but tend to beat amateurs. I played a Tico for years and won every game. He’s now in the foreign service assigned abroad.

          • SDPUS

            I for one have completely seen and experienced how this government, OIJ specfically, will lie, falsify, misconstrue and purposely lead astray fact finding.

            Good chance Baldi was posturing himself for a Presidential run this next term, and that is why he has been so vocal about government corruption over the last couple years. There is also a good chance that the current PLN leader, who was once President, and who was ousted to Switzerland for a corruption case for a decade– will also be running next election.

            It literally pays to have good connections in DIS.

            I have witnessed this government completely falsify a case. Jail a person for 27 months. Extort the shit out of them along the way while looking for them to buy their freedom. And this action was directly done by OIJ Santa Cruz Jefe Victor Chavez Chavarria and his underlings. The OIJ Santa Cruz underlings are caught in numerous inconsistencies. Now lets see if they turn on their higher ups?

            I would not be surprised at all if they were purposely framing Mr Baldi because of him being so out-spoken about the corruption of the political class over the last few years. He has specifically named names! He has repeatedly called out the top Fiscal, Jorge Chavarria in regards to immunity of the government class.

            The ironic thing of all this is that the same person I mentioned who was framed by corrupt government employees in Santa Cruz….coincidentally was in “talks” with Mr. Baldi on obtaining legal representation in going after the State of Costa Rica with the irrefutable evidence of his particular case.

            I for one, am very interested to see how this plays out. I agree the money of Baldi can easily be investigated. He even seems to be willing to open the books.

            I have a very hard time believing that someone who was doing something so shady (as alleged) would also be so outspoken against government corruption in the first place. That just does not make sense to me. And the principles of law are based on logic. Now let’s see where the facts lie. Or will this end up being another buried case? That is what I foresee…

            Like you mentioned, the Tico way is to let it fade away. After all, this seems to be the policy of the Attorney General, Jorge Chavarria. It was true for him at the beginning of his career with investigating “La Penca” and it is true with him all throughout. He will essentially retire, with nothing accomplished in regards to combating government corruption. That is truly shameful!!! If your not part of the solution, then you are part of the problem. Welcome to Costa Corrupcion!!

            Pura Vida!

          • Ken Morris


            I like your conjecture that Baldi is being framed, but if so it would seem an odd sort of framing. If DIS wanted to frame him, why did it apparently leak the accusation instead of build the case and prosecute him? The framing would seem intended to embarrass rather than convict him. Maybe, who knows, DIS didn’t have or expect to have the evidence for prosecution, so had to settle for embarrassing him.

            An alternative conjecture is that there is a division within DIS such that some wanted to squelch the case, so someone else leaked the report to make an end run around that.

            Your conjecture that it’s hard to believe that “someone who was doing something
            so shady (as alleged) would also be so outspoken against government
            corruption in the first place” rings plausible, but it may minimize the role that ego and stupidiy often play in these things. El Chapo was after all captured because of his ego (he couldn’t resist having a movie made about him) and Baldi’s accusations against Chinchilla were so half-baked that she sued him for defamation. Being rich isn’t much protection against egotism or stupidity.

            Anyway, it will be interesting to see how this thing shakes out–at least if it does and we live long enough to see it.

            It’s not only plausible that Baldi is innocent, and is either being intentionally framed or merely the victim of a routine preliminary investigation that went nowhere and shouldn’t have even been made public, but also plausible that he’s guilty. In either scenario, however, it sure looks like there are other political actors and agendas involved.

          • SDPUS

            What are your forecasts for this type of proceeding?
            Artículo 185.- No obstante lo dispuesto en los artículos anteriores, los jefes de oficina podrán ejercer el régimen disciplinario sobre sus subalternos,
            cuando por la naturaleza de la falta no deba aplicarse una suspensión mayor de quince días. La decisión deberá comunicarse al Departamento de Personal y al Tribunal de la Inspección Judicial. Cuando este último estimare, dentro de los quince días siguientes al recibo de la comunicación,
            que concurre alguna de las causales de nulidad previstas en el artículo 210 de la presente Ley, dispondrá la nulidad de las actuaciones. En tal caso, asumirá el conocimiento del asunto y repondrá los procedimientos en cuanto sea necesario, aplicando las reglas establecidas en el Capítulo IV del
            presente Título. En las correcciones que impongan los jefes a los servidores de su propia oficina, se observará el procedimiento establecido en esta Ley. Esas
            correcciones tendrán recurso de apelación ante el Tribunal de la Inspección Judicial. El recurso deberá presentarse directamente al Tribunal por vía telegráfica o fax o por escrito en papel común, dentro de los tres días siguientes al de la comunicación de la medida disciplinaria. Si esta fuere de
            suspensión y el Tribunal la revocare, el servidor tendrá derecho a que se le paguen los salarios que hubiere dejado de percibir. El Tribunal aplicará, cuando corresponda, lo dispuesto en el artículo 210 de esta Ley.

          • Ken Morris

            If you’re asking me, sorry, I don’t know. Not only is this in Spanish legalese (my weakest suit along with slang) but it seems to apply to personnel matters in some government office, and my understanding is that Baldi is a private businessman. I don’t know what connection you’re making.

          • SDPUS

            Separate matters. I was just hoping to hear thoughts or experiences of others. I understand it is tough to do without understanding the background. I was more looking for procedural input and thoughts on that upcoming action. This was the result of a denuncia against 5 OIJ officials. They have administrative procedure coming up against them. These two people named are the investigators who falsified evidence. There are 3 higher ups, including the OIJ Santa Cruz Boss who are part of this investigation. They were not named in this upcoming proceeding. But a few months prior all 5 were called into different delegations and had to give a declaration on the events. Each were accompanied by their lawyers. This proceeding is the result of that. Some pretty serious stuff against them all…

            Now the next step is the two named oij investigators need to go in front of Inspeccion Judicial. Specifically I was wondering if anyone had any experiences with this type of action.

          • garystvshow

            La Policia Presidencial Police – la DIS of Oscar Arias, Jose Figueres, the dominant elites and the press was created by the CIA for the express purpose of disinformation, lies, blackmail, extrajudicial activities, narco trafficking, cover-up of judicial redress with the Supreme Court of Costa Rica, extortion, death threats, character assassination, beatings, spying, terror tactics, falsify spurious documents, human rights abuses, violation of the Constitution of Costa Rica and especially violence against women to control the core structure of the family with full immunity in order to propel US picked Arias o Figueres to the forefront of the presidential dictatorship by what ever means

          • SDPUS

            Yes, I am aware of all that. And a whole lot more. Oliver North testified in front of congress in 1987 when he was being interrogated for Iran-Contra and stated that he went to medical school at the university of rochester. That never happened, even though he said under oath it did. He did go to SUNY Brockport. Not everyone in government is crooked. And I have the right people involved, their misdoings are quite apparent.

          • sheldon haseltine

            Well, I must between you and SPDUS you have pigeonholed the Tico mentality perfectly. In our case which has been dragging on for 13 years we have now requested the court to fast track the hearing on account of our dignified opponent Armando Gonzalez Fonseca’s age (10/25/1941) He wasn’t too happy to have his age publicly discussed! He must be said that for a man in the business of creative white collar endeavor he looks pretty good. .https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/70a6b6039368432fc5584e5738b7896bb5a726b09443cce8980ed2c697ed1a84.jpg

  • sheldon haseltine

    With the laws of difamacion being what they are I assume that your legal team approved this article. I know to my cost that I spent years in court on a much less serious action involving a mere civil action of land grabbing. I have now read Mr. Baldi’s strong refutation and it remains to be see whether he files against ICR. Should he not do so after such a strong refutation of your piece we will have to assume he has no more to say. After his very public episode with Madam Chinchilla this would be tantamount to an admission of guilt..

    • //insidecostarica.com/ Timothy Williams

      Mr. Baldi is more than welcome to contact us directly if he believes any of the reporting cited above is inaccurate, and we would be more than happy to publish his side of the story. We also, of course, honor Costa Rica’s law of “right to reply” by anyone who is a subject of a news story that appears here in ICR. All sources are cited in the article, as well.

      • sheldon haseltine

        We will be watching for any developments with interest. Have you seen his refutation on his FB page? I enclose it here:
        Ante la nota tendenciosa y absolutamente falsa de la Extra del día 12 de Enero de 2016 sobre mí persona:
        En relación a una supuesta investigación de la DIS fechada hace dos años, en donde la Extra dice de una fiesta con los hijos del Chapo Guzmán, en Baldi aclaro que es un hecho FALSO DE ABSOLUTA FALSEDAD.
        NO se realizó en Baldi ninguna actividad social con esos individuos, es una invención malévola, para lo cual invito a los periodistas a investigar in situ y podrán comprobar la falsedad, porque en mi negocio eso nunca existió.
        Puedo probar sin lugar a duda que ese encuentro con supuestos narcotraficantes mexicanos nunca se produjo y las pruebas que demuestran esta falsedad son contundentes.

        Baldi inició como un negocio pequeñito, reinvertimos las ganancias lo que hemos hecho siempre, hasta lograr lo que es hoy Baldi con una visitación de mas de 180 000 turistas por año, lo cual esta a la vista de todo aquel que visite nuestras instalaciones o pase frente al lugar.
        Nunca dejaremos mi esposa, mis hijos y su servidor de darle gracias a Dios por tantas bendiciones.
        Antes de la crisis del 2008 las entidades bancarias me buscaron para ofrecerme crédito, por suerte no nos endeudamos y continuamos trabajando con nuestros propios ingresos y del apoyo de las agencias que hicieron de Baldi uno de los lugares más visitados del país, precisamente critique en esa época la entrega de créditos de manera exagerada que dieron como resultado una crisis que aun algunos centros turísticos de la zona sufren.
        Mi vida la he ganado a base de enorme esfuerzo y todos los que me conocen pueden dar testimonio de ello.
        Invito a todos los costarricenses a visitar Baldi y podrán darse cuenta de que se trata, es una empresa solida, somos las aguas termales mas grandes del mundo, de inversión orgullosamente nacional y masivamente visitada.
        En relación a la supuesta fiesta de narcotraficantes debo decir con absoluta contundencia que eso es FALSO DE TODA FALSEDAD, nosotros no hemos hecho fiestas con la presencia de una cantante Mora así como tampoco en mi giro de negocios está la venta de caballos.
        Todos los colaboradores de Baldi podrán dar testimonio de que esto es la creación de una mente malévola, invito a los periodistas a investigar los hechos y a investigar mi vida.
        Me pongo a disposición de las autoridades porque en la lucha contra el narcotráfico y el lavado de dinero todos ciudadanos debemos de contribuir y para ello mis cuentas corrientes y bienes están a la orden, más bien se darán cuenta que como todo empresario lucho todos los días por ser eficiente.
        Agradezco las muestras de solidaridad de amigos y personas que me conocen, saben que no participo de actividades ilícitas, que detesto la corrupción y el narcotráfico.

        • Ken Morris

          Thanks for posting this. Although I’m always reluctant to trust my lousy Spanish, this denial strikes me as so absolute that even an inkling of evidence to the contrary will probably make the whole of it unravel. He also dares people to find that evidence, pretty strong stuff. My bet is that the guy either takes the fall or vanishes from the country.

          • sheldon haseltine

            We must take into consideration that here it is normal to take a strong and offensive posture. The haves are accustomed to bullying – it’s a cultural thing. What happens next will speak volumes. If he files suit all well and good and if he doesn’t we can put it down to posturing! I was taken to criminal court over 30 times for challenging an establishment figure and that was merely for challenging the squatting of our farm, this has far more serious implications as it suggests criminal cartel influence in the business community.

  • Buffalo Bill

    Cool Beans !

  • simple man

    Everybody loves a public figure uno numero! Even the media has gotten to the front line so quickly with Sean Pen and the production companies in the LA. Soon the world will idealize “El Chapo” when they see him played by an actor on the big screen, and how much he gave back to the poor people in the communities around him. Yes, this is the flip side of the event of the season, and why? Because he’s still alive and kicking. And just as negative publicity made Donald Trump popular, so it will be with Guzman.

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