The unlikeliest celebrity in Cartagena these days is probably Jose Pena, the 42-year-old taxi driver who drove alleged prostitute Dania Suarez home from her reported tryst with Secret Service agents. With no other substantial local sources, scoop-hungry reporters have been vying for a chance to talk to him — for a price. A rival taxi driver noted Pena was charging 500,000 pesos ($280) for a two-hour, fact-filled ride in his cab. But why shouldn’t he make a little extra on the side? After all, it was Pena who led reporters to the house where Suarez lived with her nine-year-old son. And he also revealed how Suarez told him a Secret Service agent refused to pay her in full and locked the door at the five-star hotel on the morning of April 12. It hasn’t all been smooth for him: the president of the Hotel Caribe taxi stand, who lives with his mother in a lower-middle class neighborhood, has been accused of breaking a code of silence that protects sex workers and of accepting money from journalists. After being called in for questioning by Colombian prosecutors, he told the Huffington Post he is worried about going to jail.
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