(Revised) QCOSTARICA BLOGS – I’m sure that most of you believe that lawyers don’t have much of a sense of humour. In this article, I hope to prove you wrong, at least in my case. Over the seventeen years that I have lived in Costa Rica, I have witnessed a varying array of amusing incidents, as one would expect to be the case in any country over a period of time. However, there are three such incidents that standout in my mind, above all others. I believe I have them in the correct chronological order with the following:

  1. Maria del Milagro: Maria del Milagro was a cow rustled from a farm in Heredia and stuffed into the back seat of a small Toyota-size typical red taxi. The rustling took place on a Saturday night and the thieves were caught the next morning, with the cow still in the back seat of the taxi, with its head hanging out one of the side windows, in a pose reminiscent of anyone taking a “Sunday drive”. That was the picture that appeared on the front page of the newspaper, La Nacion, on the Sunday morning, after the thieves had been caught by the police.
  2. President Manuel Zelaya: President Manuel Zelaya was the President of Honduras in 2009. During his term, President Zelaya became very friendly with President Hugo Chavez of Venezuela. He started implementing policies in Honduras which mimicked those of Chavez in Venezuela, curtailing various freedoms within the population and censoring the Press. It finally became too much for a U.S. backed political group, with the military on their side, to stand. President Zelaya was rousted out of bed in the middle of the night by the military and flown by a Honduran military aircraft to Juan Santa Maria Airport in Costa Rica, where he was unceremoniously dumped on the airport tarmac, still wearing his pyjamas and with no documentation. The U.S. never admitted to having anything to do with the “coup”, of course.
  3. Narco Pigeon: Narco Pigeon is, of course, a much more recent event, having been revealed only just last week. It seems that one, or more, enterprising cons, held in the most secure penitentiary in Costa Rica, La Reforma, located in Alajuela, were able to train a Homing Pigeon to return to the Institution carrying drugs in a pouch. When caught on the Penitentiary premises, the pigeon had a sizeable quantity of both marijuana and cocaine in the pouch. It wasn’t known how long such a delivery system for drugs had been in place. The pigeon, unfortunately, has been sentenced to a “life behind bars”, as being too dangerous and well-trained to be released into the wild. Obviously, such illegal activity by the cons involved cannot be condoned, but I must admit, it is one of the more ingenious methods of delivery that I’ve heard about for delivering contraband in such circumstances.

Offered just as a little levity from my normally serious and hard-hitting blogs.

Correction: Original post named  Maria del Milagro as Maria Milagra.


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Richard Philps
Attorney Richard (Rick) Philps is a Canadian citizen, naturalized as a citizen of Costa Rica. Rick practiced law in Victoria, B.C., Canada as a member of the Law Society of British Columbia, for fourteen years, prior to moving to Costa Rica in 1998. Rick then earned his Bachelor of Laws and Licensing Degrees (Civil Law), with Honours, and a Post-Graduate Degree in Notary and Registry Law, from the Metropolitana Castro Carazo and Escuela Libre de Derecho Universities, in San Jose. Rick is a member of the Costa Rica College of Lawyers, and practices law in Costa Rica in the areas of real estate and development, corporate, commercial, contract, immigration, and banking with the Law Firm of Petersen & Philps, located in Escazu, a western suburb of San Jose. To contact Attorney Rick Philps about hiring him as your Costa Rican Attorney, please use the following information: Lic. Rick Philps - Attorney at Law, Petersen & Philps, San Jose, Costa Rica Tel: 506-2288-4381, Ext. 102; Email: rick@costaricacanadalaw.com Website: www.costaricacanadalaw.com