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Miss Universe 2012, Olivia Cuplo, is crowned in Las Vegas on Dec. 19, 2012. (Miss image)
News Americas, LAS VEGAS, Nevada, Thurs. Dec. 20, 2012: Two Latin American nationals were among the top five pick in the Miss Universe competition Wednesday night, Dec. 19th, that saw Miss USA, Olivia Cuplo, taking the crown.

Miss Venezuela, Irene Sofia Esser Quintero, placed third while Miss Brazil, Gabriela Markus was the fourth runner-up.

Quintero came third surprisingly, despite her bizarre answer to the question asking what new law she would want to create.
Her answer: “We should have a straight way to go in our similar or in our lives or as is this … I am a surfer and I think the best way I can take is the wave that I wait for it.”

Her family owns a chocolate factory but she didn’t always have electrical power growing up, she and her brother gained a fond appreciation of reading and playing the violin.

Miss Brazil for her part collects cups, and buys a new one each place she travels. She conquered her fear of heights when she went parachute jumping in Hawaii.

Miss Philippines, Janine Tugonon, came in second. All the 89 contestants spent the past two weeks in Sin City, where they posed in hardhats at a hotel groundbreaking, took a painting lesson, and pranked hotel guests by hiding in their rooms.

Miss Congeniality was another Latin American, Miss Guatemala while the Miss Photogenic Universe title went to Miss Kosovo.
No Caribbean contestant made the top 16.

The new Miss Universe 2012 will spend the next year traveling the world, championing for her cause alliances, namely HIV/AIDS prevention.
Organizers had considered holding the 61st annual Miss Universe in the popular Dominican Republic tourist city of Punta Cana, but Miss Universe Organization President Paula Shugart said that country’s financial crisis proved to be too much of an obstacle.

Contestants in the pageant cannot have been married or have children. They must be younger than 27 and older than 18 by Feb. 1 of the competition year.
The winner of the crown will receive an undisclosed salary, a wardrobe fit for a queen, a limitless supply of beauty products, and a luxury apartment in New York City.

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