Now the case is close but i hope it gave us a lesson and contests in the future became more strict about subjects manipulation . If in doubt about an image , ask for tangible proof and if not provided then don't choose the photo.
Also for us photographers , cheating is not a good thing ; as technology is making our world smaller everyday, is easier to check the facts .
Jose: thanks for the information as posted above we will continue to investigate to the detriment of all those who won prizes and are waiting for them.
The problem I have with your comment above is that I don't know what "tangible proof" can be that I didn't do something. More importantly, we at LAUPS do not award the prizes, they are chosen by a panel of judges. Judging a contest is thankless, hard work and no judge can know all the habits of all the creatures whose image comes to them so they can only go by experience. I and all of the judges know that iguanas can swim and some swim by themselves. This one can't but it took a trip to Cuba to figure that out and unfortunately we can't afford to send our judges to Cleveland, let alone Cuba to go diving .
Anyway, I am truly grateful that you figured this out and we will let everyone know what happens soon.