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Montevideo, June 18th 2018 - 01:59 UTC

Cristina Fernandez and cronies must face trial on public works contracts

Monday, March 5th 2018 - 06:58 UTC
Full article 36 comments
According to Argentine law Senator and ex president Cristina Fernandez, can be tried and sentenced, but parliamentary immunity protects her from imprisonment. According to Argentine law Senator and ex president Cristina Fernandez, can be tried and sentenced, but parliamentary immunity protects her from imprisonment.
Ex president Nestor Kirchner, was governor of the Santa Cruz province from 1991 to 2003. Ex president Nestor Kirchner, was governor of the Santa Cruz province from 1991 to 2003.
De Vido, a Kirchner family faithful is accused of “harming the public interest by making economic and administrative decisions” related to public-works projects under scrutiny De Vido, a Kirchner family faithful is accused of “harming the public interest by making economic and administrative decisions” related to public-works projects under scrutiny
The ruling states that officials acted to “provide Lazaro Antonio Baez with illicit gains” to the detriment of the nation’s coffers. The ruling states that officials acted to “provide Lazaro Antonio Baez with illicit gains” to the detriment of the nation’s coffers.

An Argentine judge on Friday said that ex-president Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner must face trial over alleged corruption related to the awarding of public contracts in her southern political stronghold of Patagonia.

 Federal judge Julian Ercolini also ordered trials of ex-minister Julio de Vido and construction magnate Lazaro Baez — figures close to Cristina Kirchner and her husband, former president Nestor Kirchner. The two were in power between 2003 and 2015.

Cristina Kirchner, De Vido, Baez and a cousin of Kirchner, Carlos Santiago Kirchner are suspected of “illicit association,” “irregularities in the awarding of public contracts in the province of Santa Cruz,” and having benefited from contracts awarded to Baez’s Austral construction group to the tune of US$2.4 billion, according to the Judicial Information Center (CIJ).

The date of Kirchner’s trial has yet to be set. According to Argentine law, Kirchner — now a senator — can be tried and sentenced, but parliamentary immunity protects her from imprisonment. Baez and De Vido, meanwhile, have been remanded in custody.

Ex president Nestor Kirchner, was governor of the Santa Cruz province from 1991 to 2003.

Friday’s ruling states that Fernandez, while president, “is suspected of harming the public interest by breaching her duty to faithfully administer and protect the national government’s assets.”

De Vido, who was planning minister during Fernandez’s two terms, is accused of “harming the public interest by making economic and administrative decisions” related to the public-works projects under scrutiny.

According to the ruling, officials acted to “provide Lazaro Antonio Baez with illicit gains” to the detriment of the nation’s coffers.

The alleged scheme involved the “formal conversion” of Baez, a former treasurer at Banco Santa Cruz who was a friend of both Nestor Kirchner’s and his wife and a partner of theirs in “numerous commercial transactions,” into a “construction entrepreneur.”

The ruling states that Baez founded the company Austral Construcciones “a few days before” Nestor Kirchner became Argentina’s president in May 2003.

Cristina Fernandez’s legal woes extend beyond the illicit association case.

She also has been ordered to stand trial over alleged irregularities in the sale of dollar futures contracts by the Central Bank at below-market rates during her tenure as president.

The ex-president also has been indicted for allegedly seeking to cover up Iran’s purported role in a deadly 1994 terrorist attack on a Jewish community centre in Buenos Aires that left 85 dead and hundreds injured.

Categories: Politics, Argentina.

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  • golfcronie

    Enrique, am I correct in thinking that most in high positions in Latam are corrupt, because it sounds like it to me. Your polititians are corrupt, the judiciary and most certainly of the business men are. Never mind YOU are the people who have to live with it, why not change it?

    Mar 06th, 2018 - 08:40 am +3
  • Jack Bauer

    @EM
    “Lula’s trial, a masquerade” :exactly what I expected you, uninformed and adamant Lula worshipper, to say.

    “Concocted with exclusive goal of preventing Lula from running”: More BS - probably useless, but I’ll make it easy for even you to understand : in 2009, the Feds were investigating Youssef ‘n Congressman Janene for money laundering; In 2013, they started wiretapping phones/collecting info ; March 2014, ‘lavajato’ investigation was formally installed. Already in 2013 (while Dilma still rode triumphantly on Lula’s popularity), Lula’s name started to pop up, prompting the Feds to investigate further ; so Lula was already in their sights well BEFORE Dilma’s impeachment process started (mid 2015), and at which time, Lula’s extreme confidence he could elect any candidate he wanted, led him to announce he wouldn’t run again…but only AFTER Congress got rid of Dilma (Aug 2016), which Lula NEVER expected, AND with the “lavajato” already underway (03/ 2014), uncovering millionaire bribes fm Odebrecht, OAS (‘triplex’, for starters) and spoiling his succession plans, did he realize he had to re-elect himself to be protected;
    Dilma even tried appointing him Cabinet Minister (for ‘immunity’), but her attempt failed.

    Lawfare in this case, is fake news…spread by the PT;

    “You can come up with BS such as “top 'Petistas' actually 'cornered' the president of the STF in her chambers”: Wow, are you uninformed !!!

    Re the triplex, and costly alterations rqstd by Marisa L, OAS president confirmed it was a ‘gift’ for past favours (PB contracts)..extensively documented by e-mails, docs (and photos) apprehended during search warrants ;
    What did you expect Lula’s choice ‘witnesses’ to say about him ?
    The fact you refuse to see the build-up that would lead to him taking possession of the flat, ONLY interrupted because the ‘lavajato’ was on his heels, and your misguided statements, prove you are totally clueless.

    Your S. American origin does not mean you know Brazil.

    Mar 08th, 2018 - 05:47 pm +3
  • Jack Bauer

    @EM
    Reekie, do you realize that to you, all politicians are always innocent when accused of corruption ?? funny thing is that private companies, in order get “public” contracts, controlled by politicians, pay out billions in bribes...as confessed by their executives ....but if the politicians, like CFK, Lula etc, are innocent, where is all the bribe money going ?? No matter how much I think about it, I just can't seem to figure it out....perhaps you could kindly explain it ?

    Mar 06th, 2018 - 05:08 pm +2
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