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Thursday, June 1, 2023

Costa Rica Ex-Pat Hotelier Absolved of Murder/Rape Charges of Doctor

The Criminal Court of Quepos sentenced dancer Teodoro Herrera Martinez to 50 years in prison for the rape and murder of Dr. Maria Luisa Cedeño, which occurred on July 20, 2020. Meanwhile, businessman Harry Bodaan, owner of the Hotel La Mansión (where Cedeño was murdered), and Luis Carlos Miranda were acquitted.

That was the verdict of judges Sandra Arrieta Sánchez, César Palma Ulate, and Rodrigo Salas Rojas.

Courtroom number 3 of the Criminal Court of Goicoechea was crowded as many came to hear the verdict for the atrocious murder of Dr. Maria Luisa Cedeño Quesada, where only one defendant was convicted.

Dr. Maria Luisa Cedeño was found dead in room 3 of the hotel La Mansión Inn in Manuel Antonio, Quepos, Puntarenas, on July 20, 2020. Cedeño intended to enjoy a relaxing weekend but was brutally attacked and murdered.

All the evidence pointed to the three suspects who were charged by the prosecution. The Prosecutor’s Office had requested 255 years in prison for the defendants Bodaan, Herrera, and Miranda on March 13 for aggravated murder and aggravated rape.

The initial petition included 89 years in prison against Herrera, particularly 54 years for three offenses of aggravated rape.

For Bodaan and Miranda, the Prosecutor’s Office asked for an 83-year sentence, 35 for aggravated homicide and 48 for three offenses. The sentence for rape was reduced because the Prosecutor’s Office accused them as accomplices.

The forensic analysis implicated Herrera because his DNA was found on Dr. Cedeño’s body. The prosecutor’s theory pointed at Herrera as the mastermind and the other two defendants as accomplices to the crime.

According to the conclusions drawn by the Public Prosecutor’s Office, Cedeño’s murder “could not have been perpetrated” by only one person and insisted that the three men were involved.

Meanwhile, Miranda’s defense questioned deficiencies in the expert opinions provided by the judicial authorities and “inconsistencies” throughout the trial.

Dr. Cedeño’s family was present at the sentence reading and evidenced their pain and disapproval of the ruling.

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