Tomorrow, Monday, September 7, the Court of Cassation of the National Court of Justice (CNJ), will read the opinion in which it will be known whether or not to ratify the sentence for 16 defendants in the 2012-2016 Bribery case.
This, after last July 22 – in the second instance – 20 people were sentenced for the crime of aggravated bribery, including President Rafael Correa, senior officials and private companies.
The defense of the defendants presented the appeal of cassation. The Court admitted 16 and rejected four, which means that for the latter, the judgment remains final.
However, some of the defendants have not shown their faces to serve their sentences. An example is the case of María de los Ángeles Duarte (photo), former Minister of Transportation and Public Works in the regime of former President Rafael Correa.
The former official was sentenced to eight years in prison for the crime of bribery. His defense presented before the National Court of Justice (CNJ) the appeal for cassation.
However, before it was confirmed that the Court did not give way to his appeal, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs reported that Duarte went to the Argentine embassy in Quito.
Representatives of the legation of that country confirmed that Duarte entered the diplomatic headquarters as a guest for “humanitarian reasons.”
EL TELÉGRAFO newspaper consulted the Ministry of Foreign Affairs about the situation of the former official and if there has been any response from the Embassy of Argentina.
Through the Department of Communication, it was learned that “there has not yet been a response from the Argentine authorities or a statement from Mrs. María de los Ángeles Duate to the Foreign Ministry, ” the Unit said.
And he added that “for the moment, the procedures established in international conventions continue.”
Faced with this situation, the State Attorney General’s Office requested that a date and time be set for a hearing against the former Transportation Minister.
The Public Ministry detailed that the former official failed to comply with a legitimate decision of a competent authority, for not having complied with the legal provisions in the Bribery case, such as appearing before an authority.
The Prosecutor’s Office pointed out that the former minister, when she fulfilled her duties, was part of the structure that raised private money in exchange for contracts.
Bonilla and Viteri do not appear before the authority either
The eight-year sentence would also be ratified for Walter Solís, former head of the National Water Secretariat (Senagua) , since the Court did not admit his appeal either. However, the former official would be in the United States.
The case of Duarte and Solís are not the only ones. Alfonso Ordeñana, president of the Guayas Provincial Court, confirmed that more than two weeks ago, Viviana Bonilla, former candidate for mayor of Guayaquil for AP and former assemblyman Christian Viteri, have failed to comply with the provision to appear before an authority.
Both were prosecuted for the Bribery case and had to appear before the Guayas Court, on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
His lawyers attended the cassation proceedings, which took place between Thursday 3 and Friday 4 September, but none of them spoke about the location of their clients. (I)