QCOSTARICA – Same-sex marriages may be legal in some countries, but not in Costa Rica, where two women who were recently married, and their lawyer, may face criminal charges and have their marriage annulled.
The director of the Registro Civil (Civil Registry), Luis Bolaños, who last week admitted that there had been a mistake in the registry process, a data entry error indicating one of the women was a man, said that a complaint has been filed with the Ministerio Publico (Prosecutor’s Office).
Last July 25, Laura Flórez-Estrada, 28, a Spanish national and Jazmin Elizondo, 24, a Costa Rican, were married by lawyer Marco Castillo, the marriage appearing on record at the Civil Registry on October 27.
The marriage was possible because Elizondo’s cedula (Costa Rican identification) indicated she was a man. The lawyer, who is also the leader of the Diversity Movement, fighting for LGBT (lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender) rights in Costa Rica, claimed that as far as he was concerned Elizondo was a transgender, a man living as a woman.
However, the Bolaños does not agree. The official said “we believe the these people were aware that the marriage between people of the same-sex warrants a complaint, articles in the Criminal Code may have been violated”.
Bolaños added that the Registry will also be formally informing Elizondo of the resolution to correct the error in the registry records and that the Attorney General’s Office will be seeking an annulment before a family court judge.