Friday, February 3, 2023

They announce the sentence in the trial of the Vice President of Argentina

BUENOS AIRES ( Associated Press) – A court will sentence Tuesday in a trial that accuses Argentina’s Vice President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner of leading a criminal organization that directed public actions to a businessman close to her during his presidency , which can be punishable by up to 12 years in prison.

The headquarters of the federal courts in Buenos Aires is surrounded by a strong fence and police officers to prevent possible excesses by supporters of the former president (2007-2015), who have announced that they will rally there to show their support. case it is necessary. Apocalypse.

The Federal Court will announce its decision around 2000 GMT and amid huge anticipation, during the last virtual hearing of the trial that began in 2019.

The former president is accused of being the head of an “illegal association” and of fraudulent administration – defrauding the state – of approximately $1,000 million.

The court will also announce its verdict for 12 other defendants, including businessman Lazaro Baez, who is accused of benefiting from 51 works financed with public funds, and former federal planning minister Julio de Vido.

This is the first trial for Fernandez de Kirchner and the first request for sentencing he has faced. Other inquests have been closed and several are still open for various crimes.

A prison sentence for the Peronist leader will have a strong impact, as it is the first time that Argentina’s vice president will be sentenced while in office and because he is the most relevant political figure of the last 20 years.

However, this will not lead to his immediate arrest as he can appeal the sentence before various instances until reaching the Supreme Court – which will have the final word – in a process that could last several years.

Prosecutors Diego Luciani and Sergio Mola argued that Baez’s company was a structure created to extract money from the state through the irregular allocation of public works and that it disappeared when Fernández de Kirchner’s term ended. He also claimed that many highway projects had cost overruns and many were never completed.

They pointed out that this corruption scheme, “the largest ever known in the country”, was also in place during the presidency of Nestor Kirchner (2003–2007), the vice president’s husband and predecessor, who died three years after leaving power. Went.

Fernández de Kirchner denied the allegations and accused the court of having a written sentence from the start of the trial and of acting like a “firing squad”.

The former president affirms that the allegations have no legal basis and says that “decisions on public investment are the exclusive spring of political bodies and there is no legal norm that sets limits on how it should be distributed.” “

Likewise, it verifies that none of the tasks examined were unproductive or unnecessary.

The centre-left leader considers himself persecuted by judicial circles with his successor in power, former President Mauricio Macri (2015–2019), removing him from the political scene and outlawing Kirchnerism.

In the event of conviction, the law does not bar Fernández de Kirchner from running for public office until the Supreme Court of Justice renders a definitive ruling.

Nation World News Desk
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