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Narco-Traffickers Released -- They've Gotta Be Kidding

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Judge releases 25 narco-trafficker suspects

Posted on July 6, 2016 in Panama

Narco suspects walked free from this court
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 A BOONDOGGLE in Panama’s justice system has put 25 people allegedly linked to a network of drug traffickers back on the streets.

A decision of the  Fourth Criminal Court, which was not duly notified to the First Drug Prosecutor’s Office, allowed the release of the 25 who had been under investigation.

The Fourth Criminal Court quashed the trial of the suspected members of a drug trafficking network which had its headquarters in Bethania, in the capital

In a ruling dated June 28, 2016, the judge in charge, Yoideth Chirú, declared the nullity of the entire record advanced by the First Drug Prosecutor , investigating the group  including  Panamanians, Honduranss and Mexicans, who allegedly used Panama as a storage center for drugs which was then sent to North America (United States and Mexico).

In his decision, the Judge Chirú found that the prosecution committed a procedural mistake when requesting authorization from the Criminal Chamber of the Court for wiretapping.

According to the judge, the prosecution asked the Criminal Chamber for  certification for performing the wiretapping, but did not   meet the requirements of a duly reasoned decision, and that the  certification was not accompanied by the original copies of the resolutions authorizing the wiretapping.

In a report  detailing irregularities in the ruling the Prosecution says that the judge ignored the process that is given to requests for wiretapping in drug cases.

The prosecution said  that at 4:05 pm on July 1, 2016 the judge sent the order of notification of the judgment, but had ordered the  release of the 25 defendants including  several not formally arrested and others who were outside the country pending extradition.

The investigation in the  case began on March 4, 2015, after the Sensitive Investigations Unit of the Directorate of Judicial Investigation (DIJ) received


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No audit for judge who released 25 drug trafficking suspects

Posted on July 15, 2016 in Panama

Ayu Prado
Post Views: 67

PANAMA’S Chief Justice José Ayú Prado has  not ordered an audit of  a judge under, investigation for ordering the release of 25 people charged with drug trafficking.

Fourth Circuit Court Judge Yoideth Chirú is being   investigated by the Second Superior Court and Ayu Prado says his decision will not affect the hearing.

He  said that he respects the judicial independence of all magistrates and judges, and that is why he is not getting involved in the case.

He said that there needs to be a “presumption of innocence, the right to due process and the right to defense, among the many other fundamental guarantees referred to clearly in the constitution, international conventions and the law, reports La Prensa

He also said  that he sent a letter about his decision to the Public Prosecutor’s Office as a form of transparency and accountability.

He said he didn’t provide a copy to the media to avoid jeopardizing the presumption of innocence.


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