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Costa Rica Hotel Owner To Be Jailed For Murder Trial

A Costa Rica judge has signed an order for the immediate penal detention of a hotel owner in Manuel Antoinio/Quepos to await trial for his part in a murder at the hotel premises in July of 2020. Maria Luisa Cedeno, a Costa Rica doctor, was found murdered there in her hotel room.

The owner, Harry Bodaan, of La Mansion Hotel, had already been charged in the crime but was released under house arrest for medical reasons while Costa Rica authorities investigated the murder.  House arrest for accused violent crime suspects is not uncommon in Costa Rica.

Bodaan is a well known figure in the Manuel Antonio/Quepos area. He was formerly a top executive at the Washington D.C. Press Club as well as the leader of the local Chamber of Commerce and the local representative of the Quepos-Fort Lauderdale Sister Cities organization.

Although he is a Dutch national Bodaan has lived in Costa Rica since the 90’s, first managing a high-end hotel before opening his own hotel, La Mansion in Manuel Antonio. One of the claims to fame of this hotel is that it is probably the only hotel in the world where Mikhail Gorbachev, Chuck Norris and Oscar Arias have all stayed.

At this time Bodaan has not been physically remanded to jail but it is believed he is not currently a flight risk given his extensive ties to the community.

There are three people, including Bodaan, charged in the murder. 

The revelations of an employee communicating events at the hotel on social media around the time of the killing were crucial to the government’s case.

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