Peru ex-pres­i­dent Ol­lanta Hu­mala, wife Na­dine jailed over cor­rup­tion

Muscat Daily - - WORLD -

Lima, Peru - For­mer Peru­vian pres­i­dent Ol­lanta Hu­mala and his wife Na­dine Here­dia have spent their first night in jail over charges of ac­cept­ing il­le­gal cam­paign do­na­tions from Brazil­ian con­struc­tion gi­ant Ode­brecht.

The cou­ple sur­ren­dered to Judge Richard Con­cep­cion Carhuanco late on Thurs­day, af­ter fol­low­ing their tele­vised 21hour marathon sen­tenc­ing hear­ing from home. The judge or­dered 18 months of pre-trial de­ten­tion for the cou­ple ‘for the crime of money laun­der­ing against the in­ter­est of the state’.

Hu­mala, pres­i­dent from 20112016, said the rul­ing ‘is a con­fir­ma­tion of abuse of power’, vow­ing on Twit­ter to face it head-on ‘in de­fence of our rights’.

De­fence at­tor­neys said the cou­ple would ap­peal their pre­ven­tive de­ten­tion on Mon­day and hoped for a re­sponse within ten days. The cou­ple, whose three mi­nor chil­dren were sent to live with a grand­mother, spent Thurs­day night in hold­ing cells in the Jus­tice Min­istry, then were trans­ferred on Fri­day to their re­spec­tive pris­ons.

Hu­mala’s lawyer, Wilfredo Pe­draza, said the cou­ple were do­ing well so far. “They are in good spir­its, strength­ened by the de­ci­sion to sub­mit to the judge’s author­ity,” he said.

Hu­mala will be in the same prison as for­mer Peru­vian pres­i­dent Al­berto Fu­ji­mori. In 2000, when Hu­mala was an army of­fi­cer, he at­tempted a coup against the Fu­ji­mori gov­ern­ment; he was later par­doned.

Fu­ji­mori was sen­tenced to 25 years in 2007 for cor­rup­tion and crimes against hu­man­ity. Four of Peru’s last five pres­i­dents have faced cor­rup­tion scan­dals.

Kuczyn­ski said the coun­try had earned a good rep­u­ta­tion for its fight against cor­rup­tion, hav­ing taken ‘dras­tic mea­sures, with a great eco­nomic cost with­out doubt, but which are hav­ing ef­fect’.

The Ode­brecht group came un­der scru­tiny dur­ing the probe of a mas­sive pay-to-play scheme at Brazil’s state oil com­pany Petro­bras that has tar­nished the names of Brazil’s top politi­cians and busi­ness ex­ec­u­tives.

The fall­out spread across Latin Amer­ica when Ode­brecht ex­ec­u­tives ad­mit­ted in plea bar­gains that a se­cret com­pany bribery de­part­ment sys­tem­at­i­cally paid multi-mil­lion-dol­lar bribes to win pub­lic works con­tracts in 12 coun­tries in the re­gion.

(AFP)

Peru­vian for­mer Pres­i­dent Ol­lanta Hu­mala (sec­ond from right) is be­ing taken to the judge to get his sen­tence in Lima on Thurs­day

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