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Also see https://chiriqui.life/topic/7880-“blue-apple”-corruption-scandal for more postings involving the Martinelli family, especially the two Martinelli sons.

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Martinelli denounces harassment in the hospital

Fri, 12/21/2018 - 18:26

Diseño sin título (2)_3_0.jpg

Former President Ricardo Martinelli was suddenly transferred in the early hours of Friday morning to Santo Tomás Hospital, which caused his blood pressure to rise and tachycardia, informed his wife, Marta Linares de Martinelli, through her social media.

According to local press, hospitalized at the National Hospital, Martinelli was in a normal routine of medical examinations as stipulated in Article 55 that Marta cited in her statements, however, after the approval of the director of the place, Etéreo Medina, the politic was transferred near 2 o’clock in the morning in an operation where his wife was beaten by police officers, according to Luis Eduardo Camacho in his twitter account.


His spokesman was also in charge of disseminating a letter written and signed by the defendant, in which he assures that this measure was carried out by "superior orders", blaming President Juan Carlos Varela directly. Marta de Martinelli cited the event in Divisa to highlight the rejection Varela has in Panama.

Attended in the Intensive Care Unit, Martinelli would also be receiving this Friday the dose of necessary drugs, because despite being expected them for Thursday, they were not received as it was planned.



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Martinelli tantrum, resists transfer to public hospital

Ricardo Martinelli and wife
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The health saga of Panama’s imprisoned former president, Ricardo Martinelli, has returned to the public domain overriding concerns of the escalating costs of the upcoming World Youth Day and the declining approval ratings of the current president  Juan Carlos Varela.

For a year in a Miami jail awaiting extradition to face justice for wiretapping political opponents journalists and businessmen, there were no reports of health problems although lawyers representing victims of his spying activities were falsely told he had t cancer.

But since his return and incarceration in El Renacer prison, he has made multiple “emergency”  trips to Hospital Santo Tomas, and after being assessed by a forensic medical team with the key diagnosis being hypertension, suffered by some 50 percent of the population.

On Thursday this week, Martinelli was taken to the private National Hospital for a  heart check-up, at the request of defense lawyers.

He arrived, as he frequently did during his preliminary court hearings, yelling accusations at his “persecutors”. The theme   was: “They are trying to kill me.”

At dawn on Friday, amid complaints from relatives, lawyers, and supporters, he was moved to Santo Tomas which handles the health problems of  ordinary  members  of the prison population

Agents of the National Police and the Penitentiary System arrived to make the transfer but  Martinelli, who was accompanied by his wife  Marta Linares de Martinelli and his lawyers, resisted.

“I’m not leaving,” he shouted after getting up from the gurney on which he was being moved, but the prison team succeeded in taking the special patient back to the public domain.

The  General Directorate of the Penitentiary System reported that Martinelli “refused to carry out studies” in the National Hospital and they ordered his transfer to Santo Tomás Hospital.

“Once the corresponding exams have been completed, Martinelli Berrocal will be transferred again to the El Renacer Prison,” said the statement.

“The Penitentiary System reports that in respect of the rights of all inmates, the necessary steps have been taken and reiterates that the request for the practice of medical examinations in a public health institution is being complied with,” the statement said.



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Martinelli closes the year with complains of Human Rights Violations

Thu, 12/27/2018 - 19:55

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The year 2018 will be, unforgettable for Ricardo Martinelli, who beyond the guilty or innocent verdict, has claimed to be a victim of constant harassment and a personal persecution from the former president, more than the legal arguments given.

While the process of changing the jurisdiction of the case to the Supreme Court to avoid keep Jerónimo Mejía as the judge of guarantees of the case was successful, was only a small break after twelve months of constant complains and human right violations to Martinelli, his wife, Camacho and all his defending team.

His health issues has been one of the most important focus of his process, he was transferred from the jail El Renacer to a hospital several times without any notification to anyone, and he was sent back to his cell without corroborating the medical condition that originated a possible stroke.

This happened recently after he was sent to a public hospital and moved to another place without notifying anyone in a process which Marta de Martinelli, his wife, ended up been dragged by the security forces responsible for the process.

Marta de Martinelli herself assured in a press conference that Juan Carlos Varela has been in charge of removing the candidate for mayor of Panama from the National Hospital, at the same time Camacho, his spokesman, accused in his twitter account that the Nacional Police "dragged" the former first Lady of the Republic during the transfer.

Although Martinelli’s trial has been delayed a lot (as it was expected), the accusations of alleged wiretapping would not be a crime or reason to make him suffer such humiliations, and overlooked the request for a house for jail due to his condition, as well as the daily insults to his person.

Favorite as a candidate for mayor of Panama, Martinelli also was left without the benefit of receiving food or visits from his family, he only can have few visits for Christmas and New Year Eve, which could be extended to two hours.

Martinelli only enjoyed one hour on Christmas with his loved ones and for this next January 1, 2019, he will be allowed the visit of his family as established by decree 393 of July 25, 2005, article 254, but again it will last only one hour.

The document, signed by the Director General of the Penitentiary System, Etéreo Armando Medina, establishes part of what the law contemplates, by allowing him to be in contact with three of his relatives, however he omits another important one for the incarceration condition, the time exceeded without a trial, scheduled in 18 months that Martinelli already exceeded some time ago.



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Martinelli jailhouse tantrums continue

Seized from jailed ex-president
Post Views: 370
Acting more like a man still holding the reins of power than a jailed suspect awaiting trial for offenses  that could earn him 21 years  behind bars, Panama’s  former president Ricardo Martinelli  has again run afoul of The National Penitentiary System

On Thursday, December 27  penitentiary personnel  confiscated six USB flash drives, two portable hard drives and a cell phone charger in Martinelli’s cell in El Renacer  prison  where he’s  being held, while awaiting  trial  for allegedly spying on communications of at least 150 people

According to the Penitentiary System, the ex-president also had $160 in cash, and when he was informed that he could only have $20, he took that amount and threw the remaining $140 on the ground

It is not the first time that the ex-ruler had defied the rules of the prison system At the end of September, he threatened to physically assault the guards who watched him after locking himself in with some visitors. The event led to a 30-day suspension of visitors and loss of other privileges.

Last Friday he refused to allow doctors from  Santo Tomás Hospital to perform tests that had been scheduled at the request of the defense. Martinelli arrived at the public hospital after, agents of the National Police and the Penitentiary System transferred him from the private National Hospital, amid his cries and complaints from his family and lawyers.

When appearing before a Supreme Court judge of guarantees, Martinelli frequently arrived in the courtroom yelling to supporters and media.

The Ministry of Health deputy director of Health of the prison population Felicia Tulloch, on Wednesday, notified the director of the Penitentiary System, Armando Medina, that Martinelli had scheduled appointments for special examinations, at the Santo Tomas Hospital Thursday, on December 27.

However, Martinelli announced in a handwritten letter,  that without his and his doctor’s lawyers’ tests were ordered: “probably by Juan Carlos Varela “.

During his presidential election campaign as rumors spread that Martinelli was bi-polar, his handlers adopted the “El Loco”  (crazy one) moniker. which is still used by the media he controls.



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Jailed Martinelli may face further sanctions

Post Views: 245
The Directorate General of the Penitentiary System  has opened an administrative investigation after a search of  ex-president Ricardo Martinelli’s cell in El Renacer  prison, uncovered  forbidden items including over $20 cash

On Wednesday, December 26 prison staff found two hard drives, six USB devices, a cell phone charger and $160 cash.

Sources of the Penitentiary System told La Prensa that during the search when Martinelli was informed prisoners could only have $20, he took that amount and tore up and threw the remaining $140 on the floor.

The sources added that officials of the Penitentiary System will analyze the material confiscated to determine if there was the commission of an illegal act and if so, will lodge a complaint with the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP).

The sources explained that in the penitentiary centers, inmates are strictly prohibited from using cell phones, computers, and unauthorized electronic devices.

The possession of these items is qualified as a serious administrative fault for the inmates and they may be subject to sanctions. Martinelli was sanctioned in October after confrontations with prison staff and resisted transfer by prison staff and police from the National Hospital to Santo Tomas earlier this week.

The defense of the former president justified the possession of the equipment found in the cell. Alejandro Pérez said that Martinelli connected the USB to the TV to listen to music.

Martinelli has been detained in El Renacer since June 11, after being extradited from the United States to face trial for illegal monitoring of  more than 150 people, including political leaders, trade unions, workers and journalists.



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‘Tortured’ Martinelli asks for Pope visit

Martinelli in court
Post Views: 300
Panama’s ex-president  Ricardo  Martinelli has sent a handwritten letter to Pope Francis asking him for a visit during the World Youth Day celebrations, to witness the  “deplorable” conditions in his accommodation in El Renacer Prison where he has been detained since June 11 awaiting trial for illegal wiretapping of at least 150  people.

Soon after his arrival, Martinelli had air conditioning and a water heater installed in his apartment which also houses a microwave and TV.

He has had numerous confrontations with prison staff, including making physical threats for which he was sanctioned. He recently resisted transfer from a private institution to Santo Tomas public hospital where he refused medical examinations.

During a search of his quarters, he was found with prohibited electronic equipment and money. possibly leading to more sanctions, which has led  Panama America, one of the newspapers he owns, to run headlines claiming he is being tortured and claiming that President Varela is responsible.

His spokesman  Luis Eduardo Camacho has described these actions as “physical and psychological tortures to cause the death of the ex-president”.



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Miami court date set for Martinelli sons

Post Views: 199
The hearing in Miami, on the immigration status of the two fugitive sons of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli, will be held on Monday, January 22.

Both Alberto and Luis Enrique Martinelli Linares had their US visa canceled in 2017. They are currently free on bail of $1 million each.

In Panama, they face corruption investigations linked to the Odebrecht and Blue Apple cases and others and millions of dollars of their assets have been seized. In Switzerland, authorities have frozen bank accounts holding $22 million.



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Martinelli’s case officially goes to a regular public court

Fri, 01/04/2019 - 17:03

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The writ of amparo applied in the case of Ricardo Martinelli on December 7, fulfilled the task sought by the defense of the politician after knowing that the Supreme Court of Justice (SCJ) declined to continue with the case, this information was known this Friday and will be transferred to an Accusatory Penal System Court (APS).

In this ruling, as reported by local newspaper La Estrella de Panamá, all related to the case and carried out by the case’s judge of guarantees, Jerónimo Mejía, will be accepted with the exception of the refusal of the writ of amparo, which was just approved in this occasion. 

This writ of amparo was presented by lawyer Luis Eduardo Camacho, who got that SCJ accepted Martinelli's resignation as a deputy of the Parliament in last June, to avoid that this institution would be able to prosecute him for the supposed illegal wiretapping’s.

As was reported by the newspaper La Estrella de Panamá "the ruling was endorsed by magistrates Oydén Ortega (speaker), Luis Ramón Fábrega and Wilfredo Sáez and counted on with the reasoned vote of Ángela Russo, Cecilio Cedalise, Asunción Alonso and Secundino Mendieta. While the magistrates Abel Zamorano and Luis Mario Carrasco -substitute of Mejía- saved their votes".

Starting January 3, this notice comes into effect for 5 business days, with the objective of informing the parties about the decision, as well as two additional days that the General Secretariat must wait to verify that the process was complied with. Therefore, from January 14 the process under the SPA ordinance would begin.

Source- Local media information



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Martinelli defense new court moves

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The well funded legal defense of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli   has presented  another Amparo of constitutional guarantees and a habeas corpus, to the  Supreme Court (CSJ) after being notified of the ruling in which the court declined before a court of justice of the accusatory criminal system the competence of the process for the alleged commission of the crimes of inviolability of secrecy and the right to privacy, and two types of embezzlement.

The Amparo judicially attacks the decision of Judge Jerónimo  Mejía, who at the November 26, 2018 hearing denied the defense to be allowed to examine the laptops, hard drives and compact discs from which the transcripts of the recorded conversations of the wiretap victims.

Mejía also refused Martinelli’s defense to perform a test, with the purpose of taking the fingerprints of the protected witness. According to Mejía, this expert evidence was irrelevant

The lawyer Rosendo Rivera, an independent complainant in the illegal wiretapping case, said that this protection cannot proceed since the ruling of the plenary of the CSJ validated all the actions of the judge of guarantees made in the intermediate stage of the process.

At the same time, Martinelli’s defense filed a writ of habeas corpus with the CSJ to change the precautionary measure of provisional detention.

Martinelli has been in detention at El Renacer prison since June 11, 2018, and for a year before that was held in a US detention center.



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Martinelli defense mounts  more “delaying”appeals

Martinell with ex-Security Council members Garuz and Perez who have been jailed for wiretapping
Post Views: 125
The defense of former President Ricardo Martinelli filed another batch of appeals with the Supreme Court on Monday, January 7, deemed as delaying tactics by plaintiffs in his wiretapping case.

They consist of two actions of protection of guarantees and a denunciation before electoral prosecutor Eduardo Pañaloza against several officials.

The first recourse is an Amparo of guarantees objecting to the decision by the judge of guarantees Jerónimo Mejía, to admit as evidence seven booklets containing intimate information that was gathered from the alleged victims of spying.

The evidence in the booklets was objected to as unlawful by the defense during the intermediate trial phase But for the prosecution, it was a fundamental part of the case.

Another Amparo was filed against the decision of November 26 issued by Mejía to open a trial against the inviolability of secrecy and the right to privacy, as well as embezzlement.

With these actions, according to the independent plaintiff Rosendo Rivera, the lawyers seek to delay the case. “The system is made so that the evidence admitted is not subject to appeal or challenge, except for those that are denied as unlawful.”

On January 17, the Amparo of guarantees that declined jurisdiction to the Supreme Court in the case of was sent to a Court of Judgment of the Accusatory Penal System.

Recently, the Sixteenth Court sentenced two former Secretaries of the Security Council to 50 months in prison Judge Enrique Pérez considered them primary accomplices in the crime of eavesdropping.

In the case of the second Amparo, the defense seeks to establish that, since Mejía had no jurisdiction in the case, then he had no reason to call a trial. But, Rivera insists, “the Court has already ruled that what has been done must be validated.”

Martinelli’s lawyers also filed a formal electoral complaint against officials Jorge Rubio, Minister of Government, Gina Luciana, Deputy Minister of Government, Armando Medina, director of the Penitentiary System and Abel Price, director of El Renacer, prison, for alleged violation of the electoral jurisdiction.

The defense alleges that Martinelli was nominated by Cambio Democrático as deputy, and for the position of mayor for the same party, and independently.

On January 17  the Secretariat of the Court must remit the proceedings to the Trial Court of the First Judicial District and select the judges so that they fix a hearing date reports La Estrella



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Wiretap ruling for ex-Security Council  bosses could affect Martinelli

Martinelli - Jail or high office?
Post Views: 153
A ruling in an illegal wiretapping case, that handed down 50 months jail terms to two former directors of the National Security Council (CSN), could affect the upcoming trial of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli, a would be  Panama mayoralty candidate.

The 16th  Criminal Judge, Enriquez Perez declared Alejandro Garúz and Gustavo Pérez, “criminally responsible” as primary accomplices in the crime against freedom, and the inviolability of secrecy and the right to privacy.

In addition to the jail term, Pérez and Garúz are disqualified from public office for the same period, once the main penalty has been served.

” Messrs. Gustavo Adolfo Pérez De La Ossa and Alejandro Garúz Recuero provided cooperation with which the criminal acts, object of the present criminal investigation, could not have been carried out, ” said the judge.

ex-CSN agents Ronny Rodríguez and William Pitti, who are fugitives were also identified. Although the decision is not final because it can be appealed, says TVN Noticias, Pérez’s ruling sets a precedent and opportunity for the victims recognized in the Martinelli case.

The jurist Carlos Herrera, plaintiff lawyer of Mauro Zúñiga, told  TVN, that the most important of the sentence is the “degree of responsibility” that the judge finds. “It leads us to interpret that Garúz and Pérez] have important participation, but that they have not been the people who have devised or are not the direct authors of this serious crime. For what we believe, that there is a direct intention that the author or principal responsible for this serious crime can be found, which, from our point of view, is nothing more than the former president because he was the head of the Security Council. “

Lawyer Ernesto Cedeño considered that Judge Pérez’s ruling reflects that there was a proven fact, that is, telephone interception, and it will depend on the assigned prosecutor and the complainants to verify Martinelli’s connection to the crime.

“What would have to be tested with Martinelli is if he gave the instructions or by omission, did not interfere with to hinder the situation,” Cedeño told TVN2.com. He said that the plaintiffs would take advantage of this sentence to ask that Martinelli be sentenced as Garúz and Pérez, although that would not be enough.

“We have to see the connection of Martinelli with that Martinelli’s defense will be able to say that  although it is true they have been condemned, those are the only ones responsible.”  “Cedeño told TVN-2.com.

And despite running for two positions of popular election, Cedeño said that for this process Martinelli does not have electoral criminal jurisdiction and cannot recover the benefit in this specific case.

21-year sentence request
The fiscal magistrate Harry Diaz requested a 21 years jail for Martinelli. The indictment and the evidence approved in an intermediate hearing by the judge of Guarantees, Jerónimo Mejía, do not vary because these were validated by the Supreme Court. (CSJ), in the ruling in which it declines jurisdiction to the Court of Judgment of the Accusatory Penal System  (SPA ).

It is still  not known when the case will happen in the SPA  and which representative of the Public Prosecutor’s Office (MP), will be appointed to the case.

The legal team of the ex-president has submitted new appeals before the CSJ against Mejía’s actions. Martinelli has been detained since June 21, 2018, in El Renacer Prison.



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Martinelli   snooping trial set for  March 12

The Martinelli files
Post Views: 136
The long-awaited day of reckoning for Panama’s former president Ricardo Martinelli will begin with an oral hearing on Tuesday, March 12, at 9:00 a.m. He is accused of alleged crimes of inviolability of secrecy and right to privacy, and embezzlement of the public administration.

The  Public Ministry has assigned prosecutor  Ricaurte González, who is in charge of the Second Prosecutor’s Office Against Organized Crime, to be responsible the case that involved wiretapping of over 150 political opponents, journalists, business persons, judges, and lawyers.

The announcement was made on Monday after the files of the case were received from by the office of Supreme Court Judge Harry Diaz.

Díaz was the original prosecutor of the Martinelli case and had asked for a 21-year sentence.

Martinelli-conducido-Renacer_12598538-300x174.jpgThe Public Ministry reported that the prosecution “has reinforced this office with specialized prosecutors in the matter to address this process in the Accusatory Criminal System.(SPA)”

“The delivery of the files was in charge of Eyvis Jaén, who acted in the intermediate phase as deputy prosecutor of the case, and on behalf of the Public Ministry, the documents were received by the undersecretary-general, David Díaz, the superior prosecutor, Ricaurte González, and the prosecutors. of Organized Crime, Rosario Ortega and Elizabeth Carrión, “said the Judicial Organ.

The Files
Among the documents that were transferred and audited by the Public Prosecutor’s Office are 19 volumes of case history, the seven booklets, of transcription with an authenticated copy of the record of the Court’s Opening Order, a folder with an authenticated copy of the December 7 resolution. 2018 of the plenary session of the Court, which resolves the action of Amparo of constitutional guarantees presented by Martinelli’s defense, administrative documents, publications of newspapers related to the investigation, compact discs with audio and video of all the hearings, elements of proof of the defense , folders for preparation for oral trial and theoretical support, and a USB memory with digitized information, among other documentation

On December 7, the plenary of the Supreme Court of Justice declined jurisdiction of the case.

Martinelli who is still aiming to run for mayor of Panama remains in detention at El Renacer prison where he has been since his extradition from the United States on June 11, 2018. He had been in a Federal detention center for a year after being arrested in his Coral Gables, Miami mansion.



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Martinelli's wife facing criminal probe

marta martinelli.png

Marta Martinelli

Posted 25/01/2019
Marta Linares de Martinelli, wife of Panama’s  former president, Ricardo Martinelli is the latest member  of the  Martinell family to face criminal investigation after failing with three ploys to dodge an inquiry into the Blue Apple scandal.

Her husband is in  El Renacer prison awaiting trial for illegal wiretapping of at least 150 victims, while her two sons - Ricardo Alberto and Luis Enrique Martinelli Linares- are on bail of $1 million each in Miami, while awaiting a hearing to decide on their extradition to Panama to face multiple corruption charges, following their arrest after an Interpol red alert. Her brother-in-law Mario Martinelli  is also facing several investigations.

A Panama  Court  has  given a green light to an  order of inquiry of the former first lady, within the Blue Apple  money laundering investigation for the alleged payment of bribes by contractors of the State to former government officials after it declared unproven an incident of controversy presented by her  defense

The office of the public prosecutor handling  the  Blue Apple  case , has already been notified of the decision of the court, which considered that the decision ordering the investigation is duly motivated.

Ricardo-Martinelli-Linares-Enrique-Quique_LPRIMA20170129_0021_26.jpg Her sons,are also implicated in the case.

She  was summoned to respond for the Lemar foundation, which allegedly received unjustified payments from state contractors.

 Last September, she went to the prosecutor's office, but he accepted article 25 of the  Constitution  so as not to file a statement . The article says: " No one is obliged to declare in a criminal, correctional or police matter, against himself, his spouse or his relatives within the fourth degree of consanguinity or second degree of affinity . " Then she presented a medical disability  crtificate and the controversial incident that has now been resolved in favor of the prosecution.

Linares de Martinelli has  said  that she has been the legal representative of the foundation since 2016 and that the facts investigated date back to 2012. But, at that time she was listed as treasurer of the foundation.



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Money laundered to buy media group  that touts Martinelli


Ricardo Martinelli

Posted 01/02/2019

Prosecutors in the “New Business” case, involving alleged money laundering to enable the purchase of a newspaper, group have asked for a one-year extension to their investigation because several involved have mentioned the name of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli.

This was revealed on Thursday, January 31 by the First Prosecutor against Organized Crime, David Mendoza

New Business served as a basket company to accumulate at least  $43 million used to buy Editora Panamá América (Epasa), which brings together three print media, now strident propagators of Martinelli’s “political persecution” mantra.

The prosecutor pointed out that on January 29, the one-year period granted by the Judicial Branch to the prosecutor's office to follow the investigations expired, and that it has already submitted an application to the Eighteenth Criminal Court to grant it one more year of extension to continue with the investigation In view of this, he said that he is analyzing asking the Electoral Tribunal to lift the electoral court ruling  giving Martinelli temporary freedom from criminal investigation, as a candidate for mayor and deputy in the 2019 elections.

He also said that the specialty principle is being studied, which states that Martinelli can only be tried for the crime for which he was extradited from the United States on June 11 last year: inviolability of secrecy and the right to privacy (wiretapping)and against public administration (embezzlement) He has been held in El Renacer prison since  his  extradition

Assembly contract
$1 million of the contract awarded in 2010 to Grupo Corcione - - for the construction of the new building of the  National Assembly (AN)  was diverted to the company  New Business.

The contract to build the new headquarters was awarded to Constructora Corcione, in June 2010, when Panamenista the José Luis Popi Varela was president of the AN.  Originally, the contract was $19.5 million. However, during the presidency of  José Muñoz in the Legislature, the cost rose to $22.5 million.

In October 2010, Constructora Corcione requested an advance of $2 million from the AN. Then, the company asked Capital Bank to draw up a management check - of $1 million - in the name of Grupo Clio, a company linked to Nicolás and José Corcione. As a next step, the contractor transferred the money to the New Business basket company.

The prosecution filed charges against the Corcione brothers for alleged money laundering.

New Business, according to the investigations also received funds intended for the extension of the Arraiján-La Chorrera, highway awarded by the Martinelli government to Transcaribe Trading (TCT)  the David and Daniel Ochy brothers.

According to the investigations, the Ochy brothers managed to transfer at least, $3 million, to 10 companies controlled by businessmen in the country, through bank accounts that were used to acquire the shares of Epasa in 2010.



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Martinello son loses another court appeal


Ricardo Alberto Martinelli Linares

Posted 04/02/2019
Two appeals made on behalf of Ricardo Alberto Martinelli Linares, son of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli and José Porta, both linked to the investigation of money laundering of bribes paid by the Odebrecht Construction Company have been rejected by the 12th Criminal Court.

Martinelli’s complaint was that the Special Anticorruption Prosecutor's Office did not allow his lawyer Carlos Carrillo access to the file, nor was he given copies of the criminal proceedings in the Odebrecht case.

The Office of the Public Prosecutor said claimed that there are technical, technological and human limitations that prevent such copies from being delivered as quickly as required by the lawyers.

Judge Oscar Carrasquilla, denied the appeals on January 16.  In another ruling of the same date, Judge Carrasquilla rejected an appeal of José Porta, who was the financial advisor of the presidential campaign of José Domingo "Mimito" Arias, for the 2014 elections.

Porta wanted the resolution of October 12, 2017, in which the Prosecutor's Office called him to an investigation in the Odebrecht case, to be annulled.



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Martinelli bail request denied

Posted 04/02/2019
The latest attempt by ex-president Ricardo Martinelli to obtain bail was rejected by Judge of Guarantees  Justo Vargas on Monday, January 4  following an impassioned outburst by Martinelli who claimed ”they” were trying to keep him away from the political arena and repeating his political persecution mantra.

The judge said he denied bail as there was no variation in the wiretapping case against Martinelli.

Defense attorney, Alfredo Vallarino, announced  he would appeal which Vargas accepted.

Martinelli, who is being held in El Renacer prison, insisted that he has not been notified of a process that is already 18 months old.

He maintained he is a Panamanian all  of whose rights have d been violated "I need bail because it is a right that I have as a Panamanian."

Martinelli said that his case is political. "They have never given me the privilege of defending myself and have violated all my rights … the law should be the same for everyone. It seems that for Martinelli there is another law."

" I deserve, this bail" he added.

He said that this situation is presented in his case for different reasons, including personal or political.and during the hearing, the complainants presented many kinds of lies and expletives.

Martinelli said that before the Panamanian judicial system he is considered a subhuman because it seems that the law applies to all but him. "First of all, I proclaim my innocence and I'm going to prove it."

After Martinelli's statements the judge, decreed an open recess to deliberate on the request for bail and returned to announce a denial.  

Judge Vargas clarified that this hearing has no relation to the oral trial and said the criminal legal situation has not changed to request a change of precautionary measure.

He said that the Supreme Court already pronounced itself on several arguments of the Martinelli defense.

"As judges, we must abide by the guidelines and directions of our superiors, in this case, the Court," said Vargas, who explained in detail the reasons why Martinelli is detained in the El Renacer Prison.

Vargas stressed that for the Panamanian judicial system, the date of the ex-president’s arrest was June 11 2018 and not 20 months as the defense argued.

Judge Vargas said indicated that the safety of the victims should be considered and that there are executive decrees that make it clear that it is the President of the Republic who presides over the Security Council.

He said that Martinelli did not voluntarily face the process and that there is the possibility of affecting evidence.

The defense lawyers offered a $500,00 bond,  for the billionaire while his two sons in Miami have a bail of $1 million each.

They also offered to hand in his Panamanian and diplomatic passport. There was no mention of his Italian passport which he used to enter the United States.



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Moderator comment: This is a puzzling news article in that it includes content that does not appear to be related to the title of the article. For example, why is the last paragraph about a "New Challenge" part of the article?


All in The Family


Marta de Martinelli

Posted 08/02/2019
BIZARRE -The upcoming election campaign, sprinkled with Cambio Democrático (CD) candidates facing corruption investigations got more bizarre on Friday, with the news that the party has postulated the wife and the eldest son of former President Ricardo Martinelli will seek seats in the Central American Parliament (Parlacen) during the elections on May 5. Martinelli resigned from Parlacen which he has described as  “a den of thieves”, to avoid trial by Panama’s Supreme Court. Both new “candidates” are named in the Blue Apple probe, and the son is on bail in Miami awaiting an extradition hearing to face charges in money laundering and corruption cases. The Capo rests in El Renacer prison

MACHISMO  still rules in Panama. With seven presidential candidates, four of them representing political parties, there is only one woman, Ana Matilde Gomez a feisty independent, who was Panama’s first woman Attorney General.  None of the parties put a woman forward for the presidential race although over 50 percent of members are women and there is also a shortage of women running for deputy but there is one husband and wife duo for Deputy  and alternate. The alternate is supposed to show up when the Deputy is too busy to attend debates.

The US Congress now has its largest ever of women, mostly Democrats fired up by their reaction to Trumpian rhetoric.  In Panama 59.2% of the electoral roll are women but when it comes to supporting women

NEW CHALLENGE -  Self-driving cars could cause severe traffic problems by cruising around the streets simply to avoid paying parking fees, a study has found.  A newly published research paper by Adam Millard-Ball, an associate professor of environmental studies at the University of California, Santa Cruz, says that it may be cheaper for autonomous vehicles to drive around while unoccupied rather than stopping. Chasing driverless cars would be another challenge for the cops standing at intersections who seem blind to light jumpers and texting drivers


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Last Sacrament  Martinelli loses bail appeal

Posted 11/02/2019
The Superior Court of Appeals ratified a decision of the judge of guarantees Justo Vargas, who a week ago denied a request for bail in favor of the former president.

"The presence of the accused is fundamental for this moment," said Judge Yiles Pitti, accompanied by her colleagues Ruth Aizpú and Diego Fernández, at a hearing on Monday, February 11. The decision was unanimous.

Earlier, the defense reiterated the offer of bail of half a million dollars , in order to achieve the release of the former president, provisionally detained since June 11 in El Renacer , as part of the process that is followed by the alleged commission of the crimes of inviolability of secrecy and of the right to privacy, and two forms of embezzlement. The Public Prosecutor's Office, the private prosecution and the coadjutant plaintiffs requested to reject the bail application and maintain the detention.

The Court said also stressed that if political campaigning is essential for Martinelli's candidacy, he should have considered that before applying for the positions of mayor of the district of Panama and deputy of the circuit 8-8. The court also said that he does not have "a legal medical basis" to conclude that Martinelli's health conditions are terminal

In addition to the bail of $500,000, the defense proposed the delivery of the passport and electronic monitoring -which would have to be a telephone, because in Panama there are no bracelets- as well as periodic notification before the judicial authority and the promise to stay away from victims, plaintiffs and witnesses. Alfredo Vallarino, attorney for Martinelli, recalled that the defendant will be under the surveillance of 12 agents of the Institutional Protection Service (SPI)

Future president ?
Earlier, Martinelli took the floor and told the Court that the day before "I asked for the extreme anointing and I want this process to continue if I die,”  but also claimed he would run for president ion 2024 and win."

Martinelli took the floor and told the Court that the day before "I asked for the extreme anointing and I want this process to continue if I die." The anointing is known among Catholics as The Last Sacrament. Martinelli and his lawyers have regularly used his health as a ploy to gain his release, although he has been cleared by a forensic medical team.

Martinelli insisted that his appearance to face justice was " voluntary ", despite the fact that the Supreme Court of had to request his extradition from to the United States, a process that ended on June 11, last year when federal deputies delivered him in handcuffs to Panamanian authorities.

He also argued that in the United States - where he was detained for almost a year - he was granted bail for $1 million, but omitted to  mention that this benefit was nullified in less than 24 hours by Marcia Cooke the same federal judge who granted it, in from the Southern District Court of Florida-.

Shortly after finishing the act, the Second Judicial Office of the First Judicial Circuit of Panama announced that next Wednesday, at 8:30 a.m., in the installations of the Accusatory Penal System (SPA) of Plaza Ágora, the distribution for the choice of the Oral Trial Court in charge of holding the trial hearing of Martinelli, scheduled for  March 12.

Escape routes are shrinking for Martinelli as on the same day it was announced that yet another appeal had been rejected by the Supreme Court, which he  stepped away from using his resignation from Parlacen as an excuse.



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Judge denied provisional release of former President Martinelli

Mon, 02/04/2019 - 11:56

A Panamanian judge denied today the provisional release of former President Martinelli, Martinelli's defense will appeal the judge's decision on February 11. Martinelli denounced during the hearing that President Juan Carlos Varela is behind this decision.

The hearing in which a Panamanian judge decided a decision on provisional release for a case of alleged political espionage to former President Ricardo Martinelli (2009-2014), in prison since last June, began Monday between expectations by his defense.

He denounced on Monday that the justice of Panama has "violated" his rights, including the right to face the trial in freedom, and treats him as a "sub human being".

"I, before the Panamanian judicial system, consider myself a sub human being, an 'untermensch', because the law seems to apply to everyone else, except Ricardo Martinelli," said the ex-governor, referring to the term used by the Nazis to define those who considered "inferior people".

"Today it is not basically decided his  guilt or innocence, today it is decided if a person has the right to be outside while it is decided whether he is guilty or innocent," said Alfredo Vallarino, one of the lawyers of the ex-ruler.

"I need bail because it is a right that I have as a Panamanian, I am not an extraterrestrial, I am not a person who is going to escape (...) It is not fair that here they give bail to everyone except Ricardo Martinelli ", he claimed.

The ex president, a 66-year-old billionaire businessman with various health problems, is being held in El Renacer, a minimum security prison outside the Panamanian capital, since June 11.

"All the exams that (doctors) do to me, they come out that I have an arrhythmia," said the former president, for whom the Prosecutor's Office is asking for 21 years in prison.

"What is happening here is that they want to disqualify me and get me out of the political arena (...) They want me completely imprisoned or excluded from everything," said the former president, who will be presented as deputy and mayor of the capital in the upcoming elections may.

At the hearing on Monday the judge of Guarantees, Justo Vargas, heard Martinelli and his supporters, who reiterated the issue of health as one of the main causes for his release from prison.

The judge also heard the prosecution and the complainants, who insisted that there is a danger of escape and that the physical ills of the former president can be controlled with medication, so they asked him to remain in detention.

The appearance of this Monday is the first of Martinelli before a judge of the Panamanian accusatory criminal system, after last December the Supreme Court declared itself incompetent to judge him.

The highest court decided, however, to maintain the call to trial handed down during the intermediate phase, which will finally begin on March 12.

The defense lawyer, Vallarino in his initial argument offered Martinelli's passports, pay half a million dollars of bail and other guarantees to be granted bail.

The lawyer acknowledged having "expectations" about what the judge decides and recalled that others involved in the plot are currently at liberty after they were granted millions in release bonuses.

It is not the first time that the ex-ruler's defense has asked for his provisional release, which has been denied to him at least three times in the face of the danger of flight.

"Former President Martinelli today would be almost fulfilling the minimum penalty he would have if he were to be convicted and that is being done with a person to whom the State, to this day, recognizes the state of innocence," he added. Vallarino

The appearance of Martinelli this Monday is the first before a judge of the Panamanian accusatory criminal system, after last December the Supreme Court declared itself incompetent to judge him for allegedly spying on dozens of politicians, businessmen and journalists during his term.

The highest court decided, however, to maintain the call to trial dictated by one of its colleagues during the intermediate phase, which will finally begin on March 12

After his departure from the audience, former President Ricardo Martinelli claimed that "Varela is the one who rules here in this Court, Varela is the one who decides, Varela is the one who condemned me because Varela is afraid of me. He has invented a case that has no foundation or reason to be. I accuse Juan Carlos Varela to be behind all this because he warned me, he sent someone to tell me this, I have witnesses and I am going to report it to the Legislative Assembly. "

Alfredo Vallarino, lawyer of Martinelli considers the decision of the Judge to maintain the custodial measure on his defendant as valued aspects that correspond to the trial stage, "he has made an inference that Mr. Martinelli was president of the Security Council and that is a fact that everyone knows that he was president of the Republic. A President of the Republic, no matter how much the Commander of the National Police (PN), if a PN car is stolen he can not be responsible for everything that happens, nor in the Security Council, nor in No Ministry. What we do agree with the Judge of Guarantees is that these are issues to be resolved in the oral trial hearing and it seemed very advanced to establish a criteria that obviously we do not share. We have the appeal on the 11th and that day we will express our disagreement, not only with the merits but also with the form, because a Guarantee Judge can not consider anything more than what the parties have given him at the hearing. "

Balbina Herrera, victim of the alleged wiretapping, expressed her agreement with the decision of the Guarantees Judge, Justo Vargas, "there was not a different condition that would allow us to say that the precautionary measure had to be changed definitively. As was said at the hearing, the only new thing that was said is that he is a candidate for mayor and deputy but the rest was nothing, his health, the issue of age. We believe that the appeal will keep the decision because we believe that it is really acting in law. "



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Superior court of appeals denies release on bail of Ricardo Martinelli

Mon, 02/11/2019 - 13:44

At 4:45pm the judge representing the Superior court of appeals denied the release on bail of Ricardo Martinelli of the appeal presented by his defense. The oral and public hearing of the appeal against the decision of the judge of Guarantees Justo Vargas was carried out today to obtain a bail of release, requested by the defense of former President Ricardo Martinelli. At 4:45pm the judge denied the release on bail of Ricardo Martinelli of the appeal presented by his defense and ended the audience.

The defense of Ricardo Martinelli reiterated the offer of a bail of half a million dollars, in order to achieve the release of the former president, arrested since June 11 and held in the El Renacer prison, after an extradition to address the case of the alleged "wiretapping case "in Panama. The former president reinforced today in the hearing saying  "I decided to come voluntarily to my country, I came to vindicate myself and my family, nobody points me directly or indirectly," said Ricardo Martinelli.

In statements to the press, the lawyer Alfredo Vallarino reiterates irregularities in the hearing of the Judge of Guarantees Justo Vargas. Sidney Sittón, part of the legal defense of the ex president questioned the legal actions taken against his client, as well as the independence of magistrates and judges.

The former president in statements at the hearing said that according to the lawyer of Juan Carlos Navarro said that any accused person is entitled to bail. Ricardo Martinelli said he has never been charged, because he was never notified but has been accused, and that he is the only Panamanian in Panama that has not been imputed. "It seems that there are two types of justice, one for Martinelli and one for the rest of Panamanians", "If I die I want this trial to continue, because I came here to claim my name and my family."

Attorney Cuevas points out that it represents a danger, if Ricardo Martinelli is released from release, and asked that the decision of the Judge of Guarantees be confirmed and in turn the plaintiff attorney Eliodulfo Palacios said "We request that the decision of the Judge of Guarantees be maintained to keep former president Martinelli in provisional detention. "

Superior Court of Appeals of Panama decreed recess until 4:00 p.m. to rule on the request for an appeal to the decision of the Warranty Judge, who denied bail of release of the Republic's file. #OJInforma

After hearing the decision of the Court of Appeals, Ricardo Martinelli left the room where the hearing was held and in the hall before being transferred to the prison El Renacer shouted: "I already knew what was going to happen. Yanibel Abrego following instructions from Juan Carlos Varela told me that they would not give me bail. He told me that I was leaving on June 12... Everything is a farce Juan Carlos Varela wants to disqualify me politically and Juan Carlos Varela does not want me to run for mayor or deputy. Juan Carlos Varela is the boss in this judicial system and Juan Carlos Varela is the one who has destroyed this country".

One of the arguments in the decision of the Court of Appeals that ratified the measure of deprivation of liberty was the lack of a document certifying the deterioration in the health status of the former president. This was stated by the prosecutor of the case, Ricaurte González: "it is in effect an evaluation done to Mr. Martinelli but it does not issued the Institute of Legal Medicine. The Law is clear, that should be the forensic doctors suitable to be able to give the strength and certainty to the Court of Judgment to then be able to take a measure regarding the health of a defendant or accused as is the case of Mr. Martinelli”.

For his part Martinelli's defense attorney, Alfredo Vallarino, questioned the decision: "the truth is that they have said that certification of Legal Medicine is required, the truth is that it is a public and notorious fact that the former President Ricardo Martinelli asked to go to Legal Medicine before the penitentiary system, then before the magistrate Jerónimo Mejía, then before the Supreme Court of Justice. Everywhere we ask that he must go to Legal Medicine, obviously he cannot go by his own feet, he has to be taken by the system. So if they are denying us to go to Legal Medicine and they tell us that this is the requirement to be able to show that he has a health condition, then I think we are in the middle of a fight between a tied donkey and fierce tiger".



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Martinelli's legal team takes new tack after latest failure


Marta Linares was when husband's bail appeal was rejected

Posted 12/02/2019
WHILE  some of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli’ high-priced team of lawyers were in an appeals court facing yet another setback in their ongoing attempts to steer their client away from a trial with a potential lengthy jail term,  others were busy presenting a criminal complaint against Panama’s Attorney General Kenia Porcell.

They accuse her of the alleged commission of the crime of omission of public servant functions.

The appeal was filed by Roniel Ortiz based on the fact that on January 21, Porcell issued a resolution by designating which it designated the former assistant prosecutor Marcelino Aguilar as part of the team of prosecutors who will act in the process followed by Martinelli.

According to Ortiz, they had already denounced Aguilar for abuse of authority for allegedly manipulating evidence and coercing witnesses.

Bail denied
Meanwhile, the Superior Court of Appeals denied Martinelli ’s request for bail, overriding his impassioned arguments, including a statement that the day before he had received “extreme unction (last sacrament).

 Magistrate Yiles Pitti, backed by her fellow judges Ruth Aizpú and Diego Fernández, in a unanimous decision, said it is a contradiction to assert serious ailments that endanger the life of the accused to obtain freedom and at the same time support the need to leave prison to carry out a political campaign. "It is a factor that he should have considered at the time of his application and that cannot serve to substantiate bail. She added that they did not have a  legal medical basis that would allow them to come to the conclusion about Martinelli's health conditions

Earlier,Alfredo Vallarino, lawyer of the ex-ruler,  argued that Judge Vargas  who had denied bail did not assess "in due form" the reports rendered by the doctors of Santo Tomas Hospital and of private doctors who revealed"serious health conditions" of his client who required specialized medical treatment, so needed to be transferred to his residence to receive care.

The judge rebutted the theory of the defense that Martinelli was being prevented from participating as a candidate for mayor of Panama, and deputy of the 8-8 circuit for the Democratic Change party (CD). "It is a factor [being imprisoned] that he should have considered at the time of being nominated," Pitti said.

The magistrate also said they had been informed by the prosecution in charge of the case and by the complainants, "that even when in detention, the accused had to be ordered to attend his hearings."  And at one time in El Renacer has assaulted a complainant during discussions.

Health stable
Prosecutor Delia De Castro argued that Martinelli's health condition remains stable and that it was verified by doctors from the Institute of Legal Medicine and Forensic Sciences. She said that he represents "a high risk of flight," as confirmed by the Supreme Court on September 10, 2018, when it denied a request for bail. She said reiterated that Martinelli has sufficient means and money to be absent from the process, and recalled that he was extradited to Panama.

Lawyers of the victims of wiretapping under Martinelli’s rule like the prosecutor spoke of flight risk and impairment of evidence.

Former first lady Marta Linares de Martinelli and CD deputy Sergio Gálvez were in the audience. Gálvez is Martinelli's running mate in his candidacy for mayor of Panama.

When it was his turn to speakMartinelli said,. "I asked for extreme unction and I want this process to continue if I die." He also promised that he would appear in the case of his release, "because I want to be president in the year 2024 and that's how it will be."

For now, he must wait for the trial, on March 12.



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Judge who had to solve appeal to release Martinelli leaves the case

Wed, 02/06/2019 - 14:20

martinelli juicio (1).jpg

One of the three judges who have to resolve an appeal seeking parole for former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli (2009-2014) for alleged political espionage and embezzlement abandoned the case , judicial sources informed on Wednesday.

The magistrate of the Superior Court of Appeals Gustavo de Gracia was declared "impeded" to solve the appeal, having been a deputy prosecutor at the beginning of the investigation, a situation that could "generate a fear of partiality in the parties", explained the Judicial Organ.

De Gracia, the institution noted, "conducted interviews enunciated and admitted as evidence in the intermediate phase hearing, which should be practiced in the oral trial, and also participated as support in the hearings of December 11 and 21, 2015".

A Panamanian warranty judge on Monday denied bail to release the former president to verify that there is a risk of escape, which means that Martinelli will remain in prison while being prosecuted for allegedly spying on dozens of politicians, businessmen and journalists during his term.

Judge Justo Vargas, however, accepted an appeal lodged by the ex-claimant's defense, which alleges that his health is delicate and that therefore he needs to be released.

The date to resolve the appeal remains for next February 11, despite the impediment of Judge De Gracia, and the Judicial Branch must appoint another judge to replace him, assured judicial sources to Acan-Efe.

It is the fourth time that a judge denies parole to Martinelli, a 66-year-old billionaire businessman who fled Panama in January 2015 claiming to be a victim of "political persecution" by his successor and former electoral ally, Juan Carlos Varela.



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  • Moderator_02 changed the title to What's Next for Richardo Martinelli and His Family
  • Moderator_02 changed the title to What's Next for Ricardo Martinelli and His Family

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