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Salvadoran Ex-President Funes Forced to Testify in Corruption Trial

By: Adriana Peralta - @AdriPeraltaM - Feb 3, 2017, 11:31 am
Mauricio Funes fue presidente de El Salvador entre 2009 a 2014 con el FMLN. (Insight Crime)
Mauricio Funes was El Salvador’s president from 2009 to 2014, as a member of the FMLN party. (Insight Crime)

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The court in charge of the civil trial of former El Salvadorian president Mauricio Funes (2009 – 2014), has authorized him to offer his statement in an evidentiary hearing for unlawful enrichment in El Salvador‘s embassy in Nicaragua, where he is currently seeking asylum.

“Mr. Funes Cartagena was offered to give his statement in this tribunal, however, due to his condition as an asylum seeker it is impossible for him to return to the country, since this protection is limited to Nicaraguan jurisdiction; to intend to force the defendant to come to this tribunal to give his statement infringes upon his fundamental rights,” states the legal resolution.

The court advised the Attorney General and Funes’ representative that they had three work days to present the questions that the former president must answer.

The Attorney General brought charges of unlawful enrichment at the expense of the state against Funes, his son Diego Funes Cañas, the first lady and the current secretary of Social Inclusion, Vanda Pignato.

“We are sure that he cannot justify the increase in his assets,” stated Andres Amaya, chief prosecutor at the Anti-Corruption Unit, after the Second Civil Chamber in San Salvador suspended the civil trial against the former president, his wife and son, for the third time.

Mauricio Funes has not been able to justify how his assets increased USD $728,000 while he was president. Funes was dogged in the last days of his presidency be various corruption allegations. He has continued to maintain his innocence with regard to the charges.

Source: El Diario de Hoy, La Prensa Gráfica

Adriana Peralta Adriana Peralta

Adriana Peralta is a freedom advocate from El Salvador and a @CREO_org board member. She is a PanAm Post reporter and blogger, a 2005 Ruta Quetzal scholar, a trained engineer, and an SMC University masters student in political economy. She is also a Pink Floyd fan. Follow @AdriPeraltaM.

Uruguay President Stands By Controversial Purchase of US$1 Million Aircraft

By: Ysol Delgado - Feb 3, 2017, 10:43 am
Avión-presidencial

EspañolUruguayan President Tabaré Vázquez took to the newspapers to defend the purchase of his presidential airplane, stating that it was done legally. Due to several accusations regarding the aircraft, the president stated in the newspaper Subrayado that "the Court of Auditors lifted the observation, establishing that it has fulfilled all legal requirements." He was referring to the fact that the Court of Auditors had observed the purchase process, since the initial plan was to buy the aircraft — which cost US $1,010,000 — directly from a private owner, but ultimately dropped that oversight. Vázquez said the matter would be settled from  a "legal and administrative" perspective. He confirmed that the purchase order will be carried out for what he called a "multipurpose airplane" and added that he "acted in accordance with the law and with absolute transparency." googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('div-gpt-ad-1459522593195-0'); });   Originally, the legal council had recommended the Court keep the cost under observation, since the public contract had not been competitive. The decision to lift the observations was taken into account with the court voting four out of seven in favor. The decision change happened when Miguel Aumento, the new Court of Auditor, took office. Source: El Observador

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