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Evictions in Garza – One Land. Many Owners.

By Oliver Pérez & Emiliana García
Collaborator Ashley Steyaert
Photos by Emiliana García

6 families from Garza are holding a dispute with Luis Diego Francheski Chacón, owner of the property on which they live and from which they have an eviction order that was pronounced by the Ministerio de Seguridad Pública. The order against one of the families was halted by the Sala Constitucional and, for the time being, the other five eviction orders have been paused by the Municipalidad.

There are 25 families living on this property, most of them have been there for over 25 years. Nineteen of these families paid one million colones to Francheski, as a donation, to cover the costs of the deed recording procedure of their homes and, according to the information at the Registro Nacional (National Registry Office), there are already twenty “daughter” properties of the original “mother” property.

But the other six families that did not agree to pay the one million colones, claiming that they have an absolute right to remain on these properties since they have surpassed the occupation time, are now facing eviction processes since Francheski is firm on getting them out since the property legally belongs to him, as is stated at the Registro Nacional.

The Beginning
The registration process for the “mother” property started in 1969 and it was duly registered by 1973, protected on the Possessor’s Information that was promoted by Isaac Céspedes Céspedes. On November 6th, 2008, years after Isaac Céspedes passed away his grandson, Luís Diego Franchesky Chacón, inherited the property. As Francheski narrated, during an interview with the VON, when he “inherited the property and came to Garza with my (Francheski’s) wife, we realized that a town had developed on it and therefore, we decided to start this project; we suggested that the families carry out fund raising activities in order to pay for the deed recording costs. We even told them that they could pay us however they wanted and that is why some of them did it in several payments. We never thought about evicting them, our goal was for them to have all of their properties legally registered so they could live peacefully”.

Tioera Castillo, who paid for her title, happily poses for the camera

The Problems
Within this dispute, the Asociación de Desarrollo Integral de Garza (Garza’s Integral Development Association) is fighting to defend, according to their viewpoint, a 1,500 square meter property that they have managed for over two decades and on which they had a basketball court for several years that was used to hold various activities in benefit of the community. Ana Mendoza, Rodolfo Duarte’s wife and the first person to be evicted, is also fighting for her home. Along with the Asociación de Desarrollo de Garza, she paid the royalty charged by the Municipalidad between 1983 and 2008, after having obtained a concession from the Municipalidad of Nicoya itself. With this payment, many of the property’s residents believed that they would be able to go on living there both peacefully and legally.

Why is the Municipalidad charging a royalty?
A royalty is paid to the Municipalidades in place of property taxes. If a property is located within the Maritime Terrestrial Zone (as stated in law 6043, which was created in 1977), it is part of the National Heritage. Thereby, the municipalidades run these properties and may grant concessions and /or rights of use charging a royalty in return.

The property in dispute is located within the Maritime Terrestrial Zone. Nonetheless, according to the records at the Registro Nacional, it is under Luís Diego Francheski Chacon’s name and was registered before the law’s creation in 1977.

According to Franchesky, the current Mayor of Nicoya explained that “those collections should have never been made and that the Municipalidad recognizes him as the only owner”.

The current situation
Now, the situation has changed. The Consejo Municipal ordered a legal process to unregister the property which, according to them, may include public property since, as it was previously mentioned, the property is located within the Maritime Terrestrial Zone, making it non-lapsable. This decision was taken by the Consejo Municipal on April 12th.

“We are fighting so that the Asociacion can regain control of the property. For many years, it has been used as the site of several community activities. Now our goal is that the Municipalidad solves this situation”, explained Jeannette Rodríguez, President of the Asociación de Desarrollo de Garza.

On Wednesday, April 14th, Francheski hired a backhoe to demolish Ana Mendoza’s home since, according to Franchesky, she repeatedly returns to it in spite of having been evicted. But Ana, along with family members and friends, resisted the machine by blocking its path with a barricade of trunks and sacks. One of the people who participated in this action was holding half a gallon of gasoline in order to light the sacks on fire in case the machine insisted on coming through.


“Francheski was very clear with us from the very beginning. Paying a million colones was a good option”. Eduardo Bustos Carden and his daughter.

Francheski is building his house in the same lot that the Garza Association is fighting for. He says that he wants to live with the families.

Police officers that were present interceded peacefully and it was decided that on Monday, April 19th, the affected families would meet with the Mayor of Nicoya. This meeting was held and in it the parties settled on an agreement to halt the eviction until the real situation of the property’s occupants has been solved.


More Regional News

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Oscar Arias in Nosara – His Visit Revealed

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“Up until ten minutes ago I did not know about this situation” (regarding closed River Frio Bridge)

VON: Why is the company MECO moving so slowly in its maintenance work of the Samara-Nosara route?
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Local Youth Killed For Motorcycle – Injustice Continues for Family of Murdered Nosareño

Some 15 teary-eyed family members join together to tell the story of their beloved son, grandson, brother, husband, cousin, nephew and father – Adrian Ruiz Chavarría. In the words of his grandfather Gregorio “he was a family man…for us he was the best grandson we had”. More >


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