Costa Rica Coffee Guide

Savings Unlimited fugitive Milanés arrested in El Salvador

June 20, 2008

Interpol officers arrested international fugitive Luis Milanés yesterday as he attempted to board a flight to Costa Rica at the InternationalAirport in El Salvador, and quickly deported him to this country.

Milanés, a Cuban-American, disappeared in November 2002 with more than $200 million that had been invested in his firm, called Savings Unlimited.

A competitor of the well-known, defunct operation “The Brothers,” run by Luis Enrique and Oswaldo Villalobos, Savings Unlimited brought in a mix of U.S. residents, other foreigners and Costa Ricans.

Luis Enrique similarly disappeared a few months before Milanés, taking an estimated $800 million with him, and is still wanted today. Oswaldo, however, was convicted of illegal financial intermediation last year (TT, June 6).

According to Interpol, Milanés was carrying a Costa Rican passport with the last names Rodríguez Martínez. When questioned by Salvadoran police, Milanés allegedly showed a second, expired identification from Cuba with his real name, Interpol said. A computer check by the officials of that name brought up the international arrest warrant issued Dec. 19, 2002, by San José Criminal Court. 

Milanés was immediately deported to Costa Rica on a Taca flight, landing in Costa Rica at 2:40 pm. Judicial Investigation Police were waiting at the JuanSantamaríaInternationalAirport in San José to arrest Milanés when he arrived.

Milanés, who is facing charges of money laundering, was escorted from the airport in handcuffs. He paused, however, to tell the gathered press that he was innocent and had surrendered to Salvadoran officials voluntarily. 

Milanés’ investment operation, Savings Unlimited, offered investors 3 to 4 percent monthly interest on minimum investments of $5,000.

Milanés was also the head of the casino conglomerate Casinos Europa, which ran Casino Europa, at the Radisson Hotel; Hotel Morazán and its Casino Tropical; Royal Dutch Casino; the Toby Brown hair salons; and ASCIA, a business that imported clothing, electronics and toys, among other goods (TT, July 26, 2002, Dec. 13, 2003).

You may be interested

Costa Rica approves law punishing street sexual harassment with jail and fines
Costa Rica
5804 views
Costa Rica
5804 views

Costa Rica approves law punishing street sexual harassment with jail and fines

AFP and The Tico Times - July 14, 2020

Costa Rica's Legislative Assembly on Tuesday passed a law that criminalizes street sexual harassment and punishes it with prison terms…

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for July 14, 2020
Costa Rica
21356 views
Costa Rica
21356 views

Costa Rica coronavirus updates for July 14, 2020

Alejandro Zúñiga - July 14, 2020

Costa Rica confirmed 446 new cases of the coronavirus over the past day, totaling 8,482 cumulative known cases, the Health…

Panama hospitals on verge of collapse as virus cases surge
Latin America
1219 views
Latin America
1219 views

Panama hospitals on verge of collapse as virus cases surge

Juan José Rodríguez / AFP - July 14, 2020

Hospitals in Panama are on the brink of collapse as coronavirus cases spike in the Central American country worst hit…