Region, Guanacaste Votes

Prosecutor’s Office is investigating and looking to try five candidates for mayor in Guanacaste

Esta publicación también está disponible en: Español
Translator: Arianna Hernández

The Costa Rican Attorney General’s Office is investigating three male and two female candidates who are running for mayoral positions in Guanacaste.

Trials have already been requested against two of them, meaning that the Prosecutor’s Office already believes that it has enough evidence to support the accusation. Three more remain under investigation.

The Public Ministry’s press department provided these details to The Voice of Guanacaste after information was requested from the Public Ministry about ongoing investigations against all candidates for mayor and vice mayor registered in the province.

Two of those who are under investigation are currently mayors who are now seeking re-election in the elections coming up on Sunday, February 4: Heriberto Cubero Morera from Abangares, with the National Liberation party, and Carlos Armando Martínez Arias from The Great Nicoya cantonal party.

The Prosecutor’s Office in Liberia has already requested opening a trial against Cubero for the crime of sexual abuse of an adult. It has become known that the incident involved a female employee of the local government.

The case is found in file 22-001020-0413-PE.

That mayor also has an investigation against him for illegal acquisition or processing of forest resources, as recorded in file 21-001405-0413-PE.

The Voice called Cubero twice and sent a written message to his phone, but the mayor did not answer by any means.

The mayor of Nicoya, Carlos Armando Martínez, is being investigated in file 23-001621-0414-PE for not fulfilling duties, the Prosecutor’s Office indicated.

Martínez said that it has to do with a complaint filed by a resident of the community of Nambí, who requested that a street be repaired.

“Everyone has the right to file a complaint because we live in a country of law. The case has been handled accordingly and we hope for a fair administration,” he said.

Accusations and Investigations Due to Violence 

The candidate for first vice mayor of Nicoya for the Guanacastecan Union party, Sindy Vanessa Martínez Piñar, has accumulated three lawsuits in the Nicoya Prosecutor’s Office for “neglect of someone incapable,” in files 23-000748-041-PE, 23 -000621-0069-PE and 23-000698-0069-PE.

This crime occurs when the health or life of a person who is unable of taking care of themselves and, therefore, who must be cared for (a minor, disabled or elderly person, for example) is seriously endangered. This is classified in article 142 of the Penal Code.

Martínez Piñar claimed to be completely unaware of the case. “You see that I honestly didn’t realize what you’re saying to me. ‘Incapable neglect,’ I don’t even know for whom. I don’t have anyone who can’t take care of themselves, neither close to me nor family,” she told The Voice.

In Santa Cruz, the Deputy Prosecutor’s Office requested going to trial against the mayoral candidate for the Progressive Liberal party, Kendall Mauricio Zumbado Arrieta, for reckless driving. The case has been open since 2021 in file 21-001003-0412-PE.

Zumbado told The Voice that he would only comment on the case via email, but he didn’t send a response.

Finally, the candidate for mayor in Cañas for the Guanacastecan Union party, Melissa de los Ángeles Bulakar Herra, has been under investigation since 2023 in file 23-001317-0413-PE for real estate fraud, in other words, for selling or taxing assets in dispute, seized or encumbered, hiding their condition in order to receive compensation.

“And what is that?” she asked when The Voice contacted her. “For you to tell me that I have proceedings open in the Prosecutor’s Office, that’s new to me,” she said.

Since Sunday, January 28, The Voice has also inquired about an alleged case of domestic violence by the Social Christian Unity party candidate for mayor of Tilarán, Greven Miranda Corrales. The issue circulated on social networks during the previous weekend, and on Monday, the 29th, Miranda issued a press release stating that it was a false complaint.

At publication time, the Prosecutor’s Office had not confirmed the existence of a complaint or offered details on the matter.


Journalist José Pablo Román colaborated in reporting this story.