MercoPress, en Español

Montevideo, January 26th 2022 - 12:21 UTC

 

 

Honduras president brother convicted in New York for drug trafficking

Saturday, October 19th 2019 - 09:10 UTC
Full article 1 comment
Tony Hernandez was found guilty on all four counts following a trial in Manhattan that lasted almost two weeks Tony Hernandez was found guilty on all four counts following a trial in Manhattan that lasted almost two weeks

A New York court convicted the Honduran president's brother of drug trafficking Friday, a verdict immediately rejected by the Central American leader as opponents called for his resignation.

Tony Hernandez was found guilty on all four counts following a trial in Manhattan that lasted almost two weeks. President Juan Orlando Hernandez said his brother had been convicted with “testimony from confessed murderers.”

“On behalf of my family, and personally, it is with great sadness that I received word of the verdict in New York,” the president wrote on Twitter.

Tony Hernandez was arrested at a Miami airport in November 2018 on charges of conspiring to import cocaine into the United States, weapons offenses and making false statements.

The former Honduran congressman, 41, is due to be sentenced on January 17. He faces from five years to life in prison.

Following the verdict, opposition parties in Honduras called for street protests to demand that the president step down.

Manuel Zelaya, the former president of Honduras who was overthrown in a coup in 2009, tweeted that the verdict had “unmasked the drug and corruption network run by the government of Honduras.”

Although he wasn't on trial himself, the court proceedings featured compromising allegations against the president.

Prosecutors said the Honduran leader took millions of dollars in bribes from drug lords including jailed Mexican kingpin Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

President Hernandez, an ally of US President Donald Trump, dismissed the accusation as “absurd” and “less serious than Alice in Wonderland,” in a tweet.

The Manhattan prosecutor's office filed a motion in August alleging that President Hernandez received at least US$1.5 million in drug money from one of the prosecution's cooperating witnesses for his first campaign, and US$ 40,000 for the second.

However he has rejected the accusations and has not been formally charged by the US judicial system.

The US government successfully argued that Tony Hernandez was a large-scale drug trafficker who worked from 2004 to 2016 with others in Colombia, Honduras and Mexico to import cocaine into the US by plane, boat and submarine.
Some of the cocaine he was transporting was labeled with his initials “TH,” prosecutors argued.

Top Comments

Disclaimer & comment rules
  • MarkWhelan

    Just how careless can a President be?
    Imagine forgetting to have Diplomatic Immunity for your own brother?
    With a slip up like that should he remain in power?

    Oct 23rd, 2019 - 02:12 pm 0
Read all comments

Commenting for this story is now closed.
If you have a Facebook account, become a fan and comment on our Facebook Page!