Saturday 2 December 2023

29 detained and 16 SYR stores closed

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QCOSTARICA – A total of 29 people arrested for a number of alleged crimes, including immigration status, was the balance of the raid on SYR stores last  Friday by authorities,

On Thursday,  the sign from the SYR store in downtown San José, where two employees were allegedly beaten up, was removed. Photo: Rafael Pacheco / La Nacion

The police action also resulted in the closure of 14 of the retail chain’s 18 stores, in addition to the two closed days earlier.

On Saturday, the Municipality of Cartago closed the chain’s two stores that had remained open.

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Participating in the intervention were the Fuerza Publica (National Police), immigration police, personnel from the Ministry of Labor and the San Jose Municipal police for the closure of the stores and detention of the accused.

 The operation was led by the Municipal Police of San José. (Tomás Gómez/El Observador)

Also, the Policía de Control Fiscal (PCF), and officials of the Ministerio de Salud, the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social (CCSS or Caja) and the Instituto Nacional de Seguros (INS), participated in the raid.

The SYR chain of stores has been in the eye of public discussion in the last week after a brutal attack suffered last August by several store employees after an accusation of theft emerged.

A number of employees told authorities that they were covered by their employer with the Caja, nor had they received their salaries.

Store owners publicly admitted to a television channel that they were responsible for ordering the beating.

According to Marcelo Solano, the San Jose municipal police chief, the SYR Store in the central core of the capital, had a history of aggression, threats, and noise pollution.

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The Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería (DGME) – immigration service – reported that so far the immigration control has been carried out on 35 people, who are of Chinese, Nicaraguan, Venezuelan and Honduran nationals, some of which had their immigration status questioned, given the paperwork presented to immigration officials had expired, others did not have work permits.

The Costa Rican Chamber of Commerce (CRCC) condemned the attacks against two employees in the San Jose clothing store, reacting to the video that had gone viral on social networks days prior to the raid.

“In addition to being an attack against Human Rights, it is against the values ​​and principles promoted by the Chamber for the commercial sector,” said the CRCC in a statement.

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Expressing indignation was also a group of legisaltors, who have called the Human Rights Commission the national director of labor inspection to appear in a hearing before them.


President Rodrigo Chaves himself assured that the Government will take action on the matter.

Given that closing of the stores, for now, is temporary until further action is taken, on social networks, a campaign was started to ask people not to buy in SYR stores.


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