Judges must take into account the culture and ideology of the people, said the lawyer of the Constitutional Chamber.
The candidate who aspires to a post as magistrate of the Constitutional Chamber, José Joaquín Alvarado, attacked what he considers an “interference” of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights in the country, and affirmed that instead of equal marriage, the country could legislate in favor of a project of coexistence societies.
The statements were made before the deputies of the Appointments Commission on the first day of interviews with candidates for magistrates of Chamber IV -the highest court on human rights in the country-, in the search to fill the vacancy left by the former judge Ernesto Jinesta, in previous May.
The 49-year-old lawyer and assistant to the presidency of the Constitutional Chamber, stated that equal marriage could be resolved through other institutional channels such as coexistence societies, and that in order to make this type of decision the magistrates must take into account “culture” and ideology of the State.
“Equal marriage could be resolved in other ways and by other alternative institutes, as happened in France, creating societies of coexistence (…) without generating so much social welt”, said Alvarado.
The candidate attacked the role of the Inter-American Court of Human Rights, as a tribunal whose rulings must be followed. Alvarado said that although conventionality control should be applied, it should not be a “blank check” and affirmed that in cases such as the In Vitro Fertilization ruling, the State could refuse to comply with the judgment of the Inter-American Court.
“The Court limited itself to the exercise of its functions and did what it should have done. If the State should have complied with it, that is another matter. The sanctions could come to the State, but, were those sanctions so important as to make a decision like that? ”, He questioned.
The lawyer affirmed that the decision of the Inter-American Court, by annulling a sentence of the Constitutional Chamber, is a matter of State sovereignty.
“We are not going to think that we are going to be subject to the arbitrations of an Inter-American Court just because it has to be that way, internal independence gives us that space to make those decisions, separating ourselves from what the Inter-American Court says at a certain moment” added.
The assistant to the presidency of the Constitutional Chamber, clarified that the equal marriage ruling should have been applied immediately, and not within 18 months for the deputies to make the necessary changes.
The other applicants
Regarding the 18-month period, the Appellate judge and also aspiring magistrate, Roy Badilla, affirmed that it is a reasonable time to make the necessary changes.
“It is quite a reasonable time. In 18 months is it very difficult to agree? Things must be regulated, we cannot continue in a state where we are putting them off, we have to sit down, discuss and regulate things. It implies a series of legal situations that must be modified and affects hereditary rights, social security, family, adoption, etc. ”, said Badilla.
The Commission also received the UCR professor and specialist in criminal and juvenile law, Álvaro Burgos, who received the best score (99) in the review of academic and professional reports.
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Burgos also criticized the Constitutional Chamber for the decision regarding the 18-month period to enforce the unconstitutionality of the challenged articles.
“Doing what they did and postponing the execution of that ruling for so long is like a doctor who knows what medicine the patient has to take, however, he tells those who have to apply it to wait six months or a year to start putting it on. I don’t believe in half measures, if the majority decided that it was unconstitutional, they should have been consistent, ”Burgos explained.
The lawyer stated that Chamber IV would win with its inclusion, since there are currently no specialists in criminal or juvenile criminal law. He added that voting for an academic “without political contacts” would send a good message to the public.
The fourth candidate, Carlos Alberto Bolaños, received the second best grade in the previous report review (96). The specialist in constitutional and agrarian law defended the work of Room IV and affirmed that there is a tendency to “blame it for everything.
“Sometimes the problem with the Chamber is that it is bearing the full weight of a social rule of law in crisis,” he said, after stating that Chamber IV should avoid being timid and activist, and rather should seek a balance.
The litigant declared himself opposed to the existence of managerial classes in the Court and that he would have no problem in renouncing the incentive of the managerial category, in case of reaching the Constitutional Chamber.
At the same time, he expressed the importance of discussing the establishment of amparo courts, which are exclusively dedicated to reviewing these appeals, which represent the greatest workload of the judges in that court.
The hearings will continue this Thursday from 1:00 pm, where lawyers Mauricio Chacón (substitute for Chamber IV), Julio Alberto Cordero (judge of Appeal) and María del Rocío Carro (litigant) will be received.
* Update: A previous version of this note stated that José Joaquín Alvarado works as an assistant to Fernando Castillo, however, after clarification from the magistrate, it was corrected. According to Castillo, Mr. Alvarado works like many others in the presidency of the Constitutional Chamber, but he has never worked directly with him, he simply dedicates himself to the functions of the presidency’s lawyers.