With tears of emotion and a “thank God, justice was finally done!” Teodora Anchundia celebrated the release of her husband Francisco Sampedro along with their children and friends.
It was the answer she expected since three months, when her partner was arrested while transporting a sheep puppet, during one of the last social protests in Guayaquil.
Fernando Vergara was the judge who ordered the release of Sampedro. He did it an hour after installing the evaluation and preparatory hearing of judgment that was held at 13:30, in one of the chambers of the Flagrancy Unit of Guayaquil.
Although prosecutor Joffre Velasco issued an accusatory judgment against the defendant, he did so on the basis of Section 361 of the Criminal Integral Organic Code (COIP for its Spanish acornym), which indicates the transport of weapons and explosives, punishable with 1-5 years in prison. The investigation was prompted by an alleged terrorist offense, punishable by up to 25 years in prison in case of death.
Sampedro was arrested on November 26, 2015 during a demonstration against the ruling party, which resulted in clashes and three injured policemen.