OIJ Unable to Access High-End Mobile Phones in Major Corruption Cases - Expat Community

OIJ Unable to Access High-End Mobile Phones in Major Corruption Cases

Aug 30, 2023 | Costa Rica, News & Articles | 0 comments

The Judicial Investigation Agency (OIJ) in Costa Rica is facing challenges unlocking and accessing data from high-end mobile phones involved in major corruption cases. OIJ’s director, Randall Zúñiga, in a congressional hearing, revealed that there are 500 such inaccessible phones. A proposal by PLN party representative Danny Vargas aims to exempt the OIJ from VAT on goods and services, potentially providing an additional 1.2 billion colones to the OIJ. This fund would help the agency obtain the necessary software to unlock these phones. Furthermore, a friendly embassy has offered to lend the software to OIJ temporarily with an understanding of a future purchase.

One significant case highlighted was that of Dr. María Luisa Cedeño, where the agency couldn’t unlock the involved phone. The director emphasized the importance of the software not just for unlocking phones but also for monitoring cryptocurrency transactions, given the rise in illicit activities via this medium. Despite the evident needs of the OIJ, it doesn’t have access to additional revenue streams, unlike other entities such as the Public Force. The software license cost is estimated to exceed 300 million colones, with other monitoring tools potentially costing over 1.2 billion colones.

However, the initiative faces opposition. Government representative Jorge Antonio Rojas expressed concerns over potential fiscal implications, stating that this could reduce the Treasury’s income and impact the national budget. Despite the proposal’s potential benefits, its fate remains uncertain, especially with the treasury yet to give a response since its consultation in October 2022.

CRHOY – https://www.crhoy.com/nacionales/oij-no-puede-abrir-celulares-de-alta-gama-en-grandes-casos-de-corrupcion/

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