Posted On 07 Nov 2018
A judge will decide this Wednesday, November 7, 2018, in Quito if the former president of Ecuador Rafael Correa (2007-2017) should go to trial for his alleged involvement in the kidnapping of politician Fernando Balda. Apart from Correa, the former director of the National Intelligence Secretariat, Pablo Romero, and the agents Raúl Chicaiza and Jessica Falcón are accused in this case.
The latter are covered by the abbreviated procedure for which, in exchange for pleading guilty, they receive a reduction of penalties. The ex-ambassador Balda was kidnapped for a few hours in August 2012 in Bogota by five Colombian agents who were immediately arrested.
They confessed that they had to hand over to the plagiarized Ecuadorian agents of the National Secretariat of Intelligence of Ecuador (Senain), an organization attached to the Presidency. In 2012, Balda was based in Colombia after being sentenced to two years in prison after being sued by the president for insulting and threatening the security of the State in relation to the broadcast of some recordings in which Correa and other members allegedly they agreed to changes to the wording of the new Constitution without having been approved by the legislature. According to Senain agents detained, the order of the then president was to take Balda to Ecuador from Colombia "in any way."
Correa rejects the accusations and considers that the process is "a political persecution" and that its connection is "illegal and illegitimate". The former president has a preventive detention order against him and weighs a request for capture and extradition to Interpol, still unresolved, because he has been living in Belgium with his family since 2017.
The provisional detention was decided after Correa did not comply with the precautionary measure to appear every 15 days in a court in Quito. At this Wednesday's hearing, Judge Daniella Camacho will hear the arguments of the Prosecutor's Office and the lawyers of Correa y Balda and then decide whether to open a trial against the former president. (I)