Argentina prosecutor seeks 12-year jail sentence for VP Kirchner

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BUENOS AIRES, Aug. 22 (Reuters) – An Argentine federal prosecutor on Monday demanded a 12-year prison sentence against Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, the country’s former president and current vice president, on charges of corruption related to public works.

Prosecutor Diego Luciani accused Fernandez de Kirchner, a still influential voice for the left wing of the ruling Peronist party, of defrauding the state and involvement in a scheme to divert public funds while he was president between 2007 and 2015.

The verdict will be known in months, according to local media, although Fernandez de Kirchner could appeal it in higher courts, which would take years to reach a final verdict.

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“This is probably the biggest corruption maneuver ever seen in the country,” Luciani said, arguing for the sentence, which has fueled new political tensions in the South American country.

On Twitter, Fernandez de Kirchner, who testified in court in 2019, said she was facing a “media legal firing squad” and “no constitutional court”.

The former president added that she was not given a chance to testify about new elements of the case and would present her defense on social media on Tuesday.

Argentine President Alberto Fernandez condemned the decision on Twitter, describing the decision in a statement as a case of legal prosecution.

“None of the acts attributed to the former president have been proven,” the statement said.

The prosecutor also requested a lifelong ban for Fernandez de Kirchner from holding public office.

Later on Monday, local police dispersed dozens of protesters outside Kirchner’s home in the capital of Buenos Aires, with camps both against and in support of the prosecutor’s request, local television showed.

The investigation seeks to determine whether she and other officials in her administration preferred firms owned by businessman Lazaro Baez to tender for dozens of public works in the southern region of Patagonia, many of which were either too expensive or were not completed. .

Many experts suspect that the so-called funneled capital would have returned to the Kirchner family through their companies.

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Reporting by Nicolás Misculin and Jorge Otaola; Editing by Marguerita Choy, Stephen Coates and Sam Holmes

Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

The Valley Voice
The Valley Voicehttp://thevalleyvoice.org
Christopher Brito is a social media producer and trending writer for The Valley Voice, with a focus on sports and stories related to race and culture.

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