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Hot cars traced to first family; scandal no surprise in Paraguay
Los Angeles Times via Seattle Times ^
| December 15, 2002
| Hector Tobar
Posted on 12/15/2002 2:59:48 AM PST by sarcasm
ASUNCIÓN, Paraguay The president found himself in the middle of a stolen-car caper, which is an embarrassingly nickel-and-dime crime to have attached to your name when you're a head of state.
The vehicle in question was an armor-plated, silver BMW that had disappeared from a parking space hundreds of miles away in São Paulo, Brazil. Somehow, it ended up in the steamy South American capital of Asunción with President Luis Gonzalez Macchi holding the keys. Then a stolen Mercedes-Benz was linked to the first lady.
When the hot-car scandal first broke last year, Gonzalez Macchi said he wouldn't give up the car, which he had bought "on good faith" from a friend.
(Excerpt) Read more at seattletimes.nwsource.com ...
TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Foreign Affairs; News/Current Events
posted on 12/15/2002 2:59:48 AM PST
posted on 12/15/2002 3:01:40 AM PST
"Smokin' Hot Stolen Latino Cars"
Coming soon to a neighborhood near YOU!
posted on 12/15/2002 3:01:51 AM PST
Good ol' Asunção, one of the most magnificent third world holes I have ever witnessed during a stopover on my way to Brasil. Never such a pathetic experience in all my life, but I did get some great deals on leather luggage and was actually able to trade Airline food (that they gave us during the stopover) for goods. Un-frea-kin-believable!
When I was working/living in Caracas, Venezuela, (1993-1996) I remember the police finally breaking up a major car theft organization. The theives would steal luxury cars in Miami, put them on ships and have them delivered to La Guaira in Venezuela. What amused me was that the ringleaders of the group were all "professionals" - doctors, dentists, lawyers and, of course, some senior police officials. I came to the conlusion long ago that in some cultures/societies this sort of behavior is genetic; nobody even thinks twice about stealing something, be it a piece of jewelry, a car, or another person's life.
posted on 12/15/2002 4:40:38 AM PST
Went to Paraguay on my honeymoon about seven years ago (to the Iguazu Falls, South American analog of Niagara)...what a weird
country it is!
saw incredible anti-semitic books in every library. saw *incredible* cars everywhere (saw my vist commercial HumVee there)
the army owns half the country, and the main industry seems to be contraband, with autos stolen from Argentina, Brazil and other countrys being the main component...
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