Hearing on the disappearance of Martinelli's wiretapping machine was suspended

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  • Mon, 08/13/2018 - 23:34
Ricardo Martinelli
  • EFE

The preliminary hearing on the disappearance of an espionage machine that was allegedly used by former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli (2009-2014) to spy on a hundred people, was again suspended today.

"The hearing that would be held today, Monday, August 13, 2018, at 8:30 a.m., in the Criminal Court No. 8, for the case known as “wiretapping machine", was suspended for a writ of amparo, filed by the defense of the former director of the National Police, Gustavo Pérez," said the Judicial Branch on Twitter.

The Judicial Body did not specify the date when the hearing is rescheduled, which has already been suspended several times.

The Public Ministry is investigating the disappearance of a technological equipment that was purchased in 2010 from an Israeli company for 13 million dollars, and that was allegedly used by the National Security Council during Martinelli's administration.

In addition to the former director of the National Police, other former senior officials of the former Government, including the former director of the National Security Council Alejandro Garaúz or Giacomo Tamburrelli, former director of the National Aid Program (PAN), are also charged with the disappearance of the machine. The PAN is the government agency responsible for purchasing the machine.

Martinelli is being held in a minimal security prison on the outskirts of the capital of Panama while facing a case for alleged illegal wiretapping during his administration.

The prosecutor in the case, Judge Harry Díaz, requests 21 years in prison for Martinelli, who was surrendered to Panama last June by the United States, where he was imprisoned for one year because of an extradition request for the case of wiretapping.


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