LIMA, June 17 (Reuters) – Peruvian President Pedro Castillo was questioned by prosecutors for nearly four hours on Friday in a secret session as part of an investigation into alleged acts of corruption by officials in his government.
The inquiry took place despite a request by Castillo’s lawyers to quash the investigation, which alleged that Peru’s current presidents have immunity under the constitution, which states that they were not charged by the courts during their five-year term. can go.
This is the first time that prosecutors investigate a president in full swing for acts of corruption. Previously, the Prosecutor’s Office had investigated other presidents but for actions taken before exercising the position of head of government.
Castillo said on Twitter after the judicial proceedings in a facility, “I have confirmed before the National Prosecutor’s Office that I have nothing to do with irregular acts or corruption. I am an honest person and I will always defend my innocence and honor.” I will protect.” of the prosecutor’s office in downtown Lima.
The National Prosecutor’s Office decided to investigate Castillo “due to the gravity and gravity” of some of the previous charges against his former Minister of Transport and Communications, Juan Silva, of conspiracy to commit acts of corruption in the concession of public works, whose Facts Peruvian President, as previously reported by prosecutors.
Currently Silva, who according to the aide of justice used to receive the bribe, is a fugitive.
Upon leaving the prosecutor’s office, Castillo briefly told reporters that he spent four hours in front of prosecutors to answer “all questions”. “We are ready to continue to respond, because Peru needs us to clarify things.”
The “preliminary” investigation comes at a time when the left-wing president faces other investigations into alleged corruption in his government, social protests, and his decline in popularity after 11 months in office.
Castillo said on Twitter: “Despite the odds, lies and accusations, I call on Peruvians to trust that all the objectives set by the People’s Government will become a reality working together, because Peru is above any circumstance.” “
In late March, the president overcame a second attempt by the opposition in a unicameral Congress to launch a political trial demanding his removal from office, accusing him of ruling “his moral incompetence”.
(Reporting by Marco Aquino, Editing by Manuel Farias)