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The attempts at translation of mainstream media articles by Newsroom Panama are pitiful.

Retributions ..wait for them.

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Extradition approval for Panama’s ex-president – Martinelli 

Martinelli awaiting the decision

PANAMA’S authoritarian ex-president Ricardo Martinelli. who has boasted that he would return to Panama for a triumphal tour of the country will instead be arriving under escort to face charges that if proven could earn him  20 years in jail, even allowing for the shaky foundations of Panama’s Supreme Court.

Meanwhile, the CD Party he created to achieve the presidency is split, it’s last presidential candidate behind bars and members disappearing as the  “Shoes of the People” password no longer gives access to the pickings in the corruption cave.


Extradition approval for Panama’s ex-president – Martinelli Before he was arrested and denied access to his Twitter account he had threatened to return and run for Mayor of Panama in 2019 while grooming himself for another run at the presidency.

On Thursday, August 31 in a 93 page ruling US Federal Judge Edwin G. Torres in a South Florida District Court granted Martinelli’s extradition to be tried for illegal surveillance of some 150 political opponents, journalists, lawyers and businessmen and his mistress, and for embezzlement.

At an early stage in his eavesdropping activities, he asked the then US Ambassador for help from the DEA to monitor opponents and his wife.

Martinelli has been detained since June 12, despite requests for bail of release and other writs filed by his legal defense in the United States, headed by lawyer Marcos Daniel Jiménez.

The US Attorney’s Office said the former president had been a “chief” director of the alleged illegal interceptions between 2012 and 2014, during his administration. The defense had argued that illegal evidence has been presented within the extradition process.

Panama’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Panama requested Martinelli’s extradition  On September 28, 2016 in response to a request from the Supreme Court after he failed to appear for a court hearing.

Martinelli’s two sons are on an Interpol red alert list in connection with the Odebrecht bribery scandal. Authorities have seized $22 million from Swiss and Andorran bank accounts, and taken possession of a luxury apartment in Madrid and a helicopter in Mexico.

His former private secretary, Adolfo  “Chichi” de Obarrio is also on the run, charged with embezzlement.  De Obarrio’s mother is in preventive detention in Panama.

During earlier  Miami hearings, Martinelli offered to pay a bond of $10 million. which was turned down as the Judge considered the supermarket billionaire a flight risk.

When he will be brought back to Panama is uncertain. If he opts for a fast exit from his cell it could be measured in weeks. If his lawyers play the delaying game he could remain in the detention center where he is losing weight for months

What is assured is that he won’t be returning home in the private jet he has used to whisk other fleeing members of his inner circle to what was perceived as the safety of the United States.



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Martinelli lawyers move to stall extradition

Miami court house and adjoining detention center

A DAY after  a Florida judge ruled that there was probable cause for ex-president Ricardo Martinelli to face justice in Panama his lawyers made their first moves to stall the extradition process.

On Friday, September 1,  they sent a petition to Judge Edwin Torres of the Court of the Southern District of Florida, to suspend for 30 days the delivery of their client to the State Department while they prepare a habeas corpus.

In case the judge has already issued the extradition certificate, the lawyers ask Torres formally to suspend the order that should follow the ruling issued on Thursday, August 31.

“President Martinelli plans to appeal Torres’ final order through a petition for habeas corpus appeal to the US District Court for the Southern District of Florida located in Atlanta, Georgia. For this purpose, the defense requires time to prepare the document in a period of one month, to seek the opportunity to review the final order issued by the Court of the Southern District of Florida.”

Good faith
The request, according to the defense, “is presented in good faith and is not intended to cause unnecessary delays, since if the defense does not manifest the defense, the former president would suffer prejudice without being able to write the petition of a habeas corpus that assists in law before the final order of the Court.

“The denial of a temporary stay, as read in the petition of the defense, would de facto deprive the former president of this opportunity.”

The defense asks  the judge to delay the certification of extradition until September 30. and points out that it has tried to consult the motion with, the prosecution, but has not received a response, and given the urgency brings an instant motion to know “whether the government (or prosecutor) opposes or not the resource.”

Martinelli fled Panama in 2014, and his lawyers are making their moves to endeavor to save him from returning  to face trial for illegal surveillance of 150 political opponents, journalists and businessmen and multiple corruption and embezzlement cases involving him and members of his “zero circle”. He labels the criminal investigations “political persecution” by his successor, President Juan Carlos Varela.



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Martinelli loses another court appeal

Ricardo Martinelli

PANAMA’S EX-PRESIDENT  Ricardo Martinelli currently in a Miami Detention Center cell,  go another court room set back on Aug 28  when the  Supreme Court  (CSJ) rejected an application for protection of human rights filed by the defense

Martinelli (2009-2014),  has been detained in Miami, since last June 12, while waiting to be extradited to Panama.

The complaint sought to have the CSJ recognize the violation of the fundamental guarantees of Martinelli, after the Ministry of Foreign Affairs had sent the United States a request to extradite him , for the unauthorized interception of communications through  theSecurity Council In the last two years of his mandate.

The ruling, , states that the Ministry of Foreign Affairs acted in accordance with right in the processing of his extradition.



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Judge visits Canada  in Martinelli shares probe

Hernán De León,

A PANAMA Supreme Court Judge acting as prosecutor in an shares  trading   investigation of ex-president Ricardo Martinelli, traveled to Canada to get assistance from Canadian judicial authorities.

Hernán De León, acting as prosecutor, is seeking to determine whether Martinelli used privileged (insider) information to acquire shares of the  Canadian mining company Petaquilla Gold at low prices and then sell them for double and triple what he paid.

De León was met by Janet Henchy, Director General and Legal Adviser of the  International Judicial Criminal Law Assistance Group of  Canada’s Department of Justice and the counselor Jacqueline Beckless, of the Judicial Branch.

Panama’s request for judicial assistance information was:  “In order to clarify the facts t investigated by  De León … In addition, the Canadian authorities stated that they have the availability to respond and offered  the collaboration and support needed in research,” says a court statement.


The full Supreme Court admitted the case on September 23, after the Superintendency of the Securities Market compiled copies of the administrative process for the purchase and sale of shares of Petaquilla Gold, a  Canadian company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (TSE).  Luis Mario Carrasco is the judge of guarantees in the case.

Martinelli has been detained awaiting extradition to Panama, for another case – unauthorized interception of communications by the National Security Council in the last two years of his mandate.



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Wiretap hearing gets fourth delay

Alejandro Garuz

THE  HEARING of charges of illegal wiretapping against former officials of Ricardo Martinelli  administration (2009-2014)  hahaseen postponed for the fourth time and isnow set  for  January 15 to 26, 2018 reports the Efe news agency.

The Sixteenth Circuit Court was scheduled to begin the hearing on Monday, September 11 but decided to reschedule it, this time at the request of the defense of Alejandro Garuz, who was secretary of the National Security Council under  ex-president RicardoMartinelli and is hospitalized, sources said.

Along with Garuz, another former Secretary of the Security Council, Gustavo Pérez, and his subordinates, Ronny Ramiro Rodríguez and William Pitti, are also The whereabouts of  Rodríguez and Pitti are  unknown. Perez is serving a five-year jail term related to illegal weapons found in his home.

All are accused of crimes against the inviolability of security  and the right to privacy for allegedly intercepting communications illegally of  over 150 people, including political opponents of Martinelli,  journalists, businessmen and  even his wife and mistress..

Den of thieves
Panama’s Supreme Court of is investigating Martinelli, who has been detained  in Miami Florida since June 12 during an extradition process.

He is investigated separately  because, he is a deputy of the Central American Parliament (Parlacen), which during his election campaign he called a “den of thieves”

According to the prosecution the Martinelli Government acquired the listening equipment in Israel from the company M.L.M. Protection Ltd. for $ 13.5 million.

The equipment , according to research, was purchased through the  former National Assistance Program (PAN), a government entity created to urgently meet the needs of the poorest Panamaanians and whose former directors, and Martinelli  are involved in multiple corruption cases.



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Irma delays delivery of Martinelli Italy indictment

Martinelli, and Silvio Berlusconi. set up deal.

HURRICANE Irma is delaying delivery of a notification to  Panama’s ex-president Ricardo Martinelli from the Supreme Court of yet another prosecution against him. This one was lurking in the wings while he was still in office.

Martinelli faces charges for the alleged commission of crimes against public administration and individual liberty to the detriment of  Italian company Impregilo, S.A.

The facts relate  to a proceeding in Italy through the court of Naples which sentenced  Valter Lavitola, who acted as an intermediary between the Italian companies and Panama in order to extort Impregilo, while Martinelli was president (2009-14).

In a note dated August 25, signed by the President of the Court, José Ayú Prado, addressed to the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the lawyers of the Judicial Office of the Supreme Court of Justice, Manuel Calvo, Undersecretary of the Supreme Court and Aura Tuñon, assistant to the General Secretariat, in addition to Fermin Bonilla as the representative of the prosecutor of the case, will request the consul’s collaboration in Miami, Florida, to be sent to Martinelli, in the Miami  Federal Detention Center since June 4 – a note informing him that the magistrate in charge  Harry Diaz, has been asked to set the date of the hearing,

The mission, however, will have to wait until hurricane Irma passes through the city, currently under emergency alert.



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US prosecutors oppose Martinelli extradition stall


The Miami prosecutor’s office is opposing a request from the lawyers of former Panama president Ricardo  Martinelli for federal judge Edwin Torres to suspend action on the follow-up step to his extradition.

In a note sent to Marcos Jiménez and John Richard Byrne, attorneys for Martinelli, prosecutor Adam Fels explained that the standard does not provide opportunities for the certification  to remain in the judge’s office, given that the procedure indicates that it should be forwarded to the US  State Department, so that the Secretary Rex Tillerson can make a final decision.

Fels informed Jimenez and Byrne that the usual thing is that Department of State order the delivery of the fugitive two months after the judge has issued its certification. In the case of Martinelli, Torres granted the extradition on

August.31. That same day, Torres ordered  Martinelli kept in the Miami Federal Detention Center Miami, which he entered on June 12, after being captured by federal marshals near his mansion in Coral Gables.

The prosecutor told the lawyers that if Martinelli appeals the decision of Torres, the  State Department will immediately suspend the process until the appeal is resolved.

Martinelli’s defense asked the judge not to refer the case to the State Department before September 30, as it needs this time to prepare the appeal against extradition. In a motion delivered in June



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Human Rights Watch asks US to sanction black listed Martinelli

Martinelli. on Human rights black list

Human Rights Watch (HRW) has asked the US Government to impose financial sanctions and visa bans on 15 individuals considered to be “violators of human rights and responsible for foreign corrupt practices,” including former Panama President Ricardo Martinelli.

In a statement issued in Washington,  on Wednesday, September 13,  the human rights organization said that it has sent a letter supported by another twenty groups to  US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson, and Treasury  Secretary, Steven Mnuchin. In the letter, HRW urges President Donald Trump’s Executive to implement the so-called “Magnitsky Global Human Rights Accountability Act”, approved in 2016.

That law gives the president of the USA. power to issue visa bans or blocking assets against any individual who violates basic human rights or attempts against persons who expose practices of corruption.

That legislation “is a powerful tool that allows the US to have human rights abusers accountable when their governments fail to do so,” said HRW Washington director Andrea Prasow.

“Possible human rights violators and kleptocrats around the world should now think twice before committing serious abuses and corruption,” Prasow added.

HRW recalls that on October  8, Trump formally delegated authority to the Secretaries of State and Treasury to impose sanctions under the law, which is named after Russian lawyer Sergei Magnitsky, who died after being arrested in 2009 after attempying to investigate a supposed fiscal fraud of the Russian Government.

Martinelli, is currently detained in the United States. and required in Panama  for the alleged offenses of embezzlement and illegal eavesdropping.

HRW accuses Martinelli of allegedly embezzling, during his years in power (2009-2014), along with close collaborators, “up to $100 million dollars of social projects of the Government intended  to help the citizens of Panama”.

The organization says that there are currently “more than 200 investigations into alleged corrupt agreements” that took place while running Panama.

Also on the HRW list is Felipe Flores Velázquez, former Secretary of Public Security of Iguala, in the state of Guerrero (Mexico).

According to the organization, Flores Velázquez “was one of the senior commanders in charge of police officers who tortured and executed six people, and forced to disappear another 43 students” in September 2014.

“The students were killed in apparent reprisal for protesting against corruption by local and state officials,” HRW adds.

According to the organization, the possible complicity of Flores Velázquez with the disappearance of the 46 students is “an open question for researchers.”

Other individuals from countries such as Azerbaijan, Baréin, China, Egypt, Ethiopia, Saudi Arabia, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, Vietnam, Democratic Republic of Congo, Liberia, Russia and Ukraine are also on the list.



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US Judge named Martinelli in CSS bribery case

Ricaro Martinellie

A  US FEDERAL  judge identified former president Ricardo Martinelli as one of the alleged co-conspirators in a bribery scheme that assisted a  subsidiary of the German software company SAP to sell software to Panama’s Social Security System, CSS in exchange for bribes. [An American involved has already been jailed].

This is part of the contents of a letter sent by 23 human rights organizations to  US Government Secretaries Rex Tillerson (State) and Steven Mnuchin (Treasury), calling for Martinelli to be sanctioned  on the basis of the ‘Magnitsky Law’, which prosecutes accused aliens of corruption and violation of human rights.

At least 23 human rights and anti-corruption organizations signed the letter  to Tillerson and Mnuchin, in which they ere asked to impose sanctions on Martinelli,  such as the withdrawal of his visa and the freezing of assets that are under the jurisdiction of the US.

The organizations base their request on the application of the Global Liability Human Rights (Magnitsky Act), which allows for sanctions against foreigners accused of corruption and violations of human rights,

Martinelli has been in detention since June 12 in Miami, US, awaiting extradition to face  wiretapping and embezzlement charges  during his term in office (2009-2014)

Tillerson must make the final decision on the extradition of Martinelli to Panama after federal judge Edwin Torres declared him extraditable last August.

The letter, signed, among others, by organizations such as Human Rights Watch (HRW), Transparency International, Freedom House and Reporters Without Borders, says: “In his term as president, the perpetrator -Martinelli- and his relatives allegedly embezzled up to $100 million of the social services projects designed to help the citizens of Panama. ”

They also emphasized that at  the present time there are more than 200 investigations open in cases supposedly corrupt that occurred during his term, with the former president [as] the “target “of nine Supreme Court investigations, including bribery, misappropriation of  public funds and abuse of power, “



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Another Martinelli setback in extradition fight

Martinelli. on Human rights black list

LAWYERS for Ex-president Ricardo Martinelli are running out of options after suffering another set back in their attempts to stall his extradition to Panama.

US District Judge Edwin Torres denied them a request to delay the extradition process for 30 days in order to prepare a writ of habeas corpus before the Supreme Court.

“The role of the Court ended with the issuance of certification. Now, the secretary is empowered to exercise his discretion and determine whether or not to give Martinelli to Panama and what remains for Martinelli’s defense is to file the Habeas Corpus. Martinelli can only be extradited to Panama, when the delivery order is issued, “they said.

On  August 31 the judge endorsed  Martinelli’s  extradition to Panama.

In a 93-page document, he  upheld Panama’s  position in the  process following the former leader, for illegal interception of communications from the Security Council.



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Martinelli’s first 100 days [behind bars]


PANAMA’S  fugitive former president marked his first 100 days behind bars on Monday, September 20.

Ricardo Martinelli .  in a Federal jail in Miami pending extradition is wanted by the Panamanian justice system for the alleged wiretapping of some 150 people of opposition politicians, journalists, social communicators, businessmen, officials and other Panamanian personalities. Even his mistress has been named as a target of his snoops.

During his stay at the Federal Detention Center ,Martinelli went to court five times to fight extradition to Panama. At the last hearing, the extradition was approved.

A month after his arrest he was denied bail despite his lawyers asserting that there was no risk of escape from his client and they and they offered a $10  million bond  for house arrest in his newly purchased $8.2 illion mansion. His  five-man legal team claimed that Martinelli would submit to a surveillance device or bracelet and would include a system of video surveillance and private security, which would be paid by Martinelli  himself to ensure that he would not flee from Miami.

US judge Edwin Torres, was not convinced and considered that with his overseas connections and wealth the supermarket magnate was a fight risk.

On August 31,  Torres ruled Martinelli’s extradition to  Panama viable.

The defense filed an appeal to suspend theprocess for at least 30 days while planning to prepare a writ of habeas corpus.

However, the judge rejected the petition. “A 30-day suspension is not necessary,” Torres said in his decision, arguing that “the court has a minimum jurisdiction” to suspend the extradition process.

Political persecution
Martinelli settled in the US, after he left Panama on a tour in January 2015 claiming  political persecution of by the Government of Juan Carlos Varella.

The “persecution” mantra was taken up by some former cabinet members  and Matinelli business associates facing corruption investigations.

Martinelli is also facing a dozen corruption and  embezzlement  investigation all with lengthy sentences attached if convicted. If  found guilty in the wiretapping case, he could face up to 21 years in jail, which would make his first hundred days a drop in a murky ocean



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Martinelli pardons ruled unconstitutional


SEVEN of the criminal sentence pardons awarded by former President Ricardo Martinelli,  in a flurry of decrees on the last day of his government, have been declared unconstitutional by Panama’s full Supreme Court.

By executive decrees 301, 303, 304, 305, 306, 307 and 308, Martinelli as President of the Republic granted penalty reductions to

José Murillo, Argelis Torres, Edgar Caballero, Ricaurte Herrera, Oscar Ortega, Ubaldo Díaz and Jonathan Trejos.

The decrees were issued and published in the Official Gazette on June 30, 2014.

Martinelli fled the country the next day.

In a ruling of August 29, the lowering of sentences was declared unconstitutional because the decrees did not indicate the crime committed, the sentence imposed, nor does it indicate whether the persons are detained fulfilling an enforced sentence.

“Therefore, it is noted that in the absence of these requirements the Constitution was violated, because, in the decrees, Martinelli eliminated the entire sentence imposed. When the constitution says only part may be pardoned.”

Cecilio Cedalise was the rapporteur magistrate reports TVN



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Most Martinelli  criminal cases paralyzed


THE MAJORITY  of the hearings and proceedings of the eight criminal cases  opened by the Supreme Court against ex-president Ricardo Martinelli are paralyzed.

In three of the cases: the dehydrated $44.9 million dried food contract; the 355 pardons granted on his last day in office; and the alleged extortion of the Italian company Impregilo, hearings to lay charges have been requested but have been suspended or no dates have been scheduled, reports  La Prensa.

In the cases  of dehydrated food and Impregilo the dates has not been set, while for the 355 pardons scandal the hearing was scheduled for May 10 and June 14 of this year but on  neither of the two days was the any action

In other cases, like the purchase of grains, the loan from the  Isthmus Savings and Collection company, in which a  witness has said he carried suitcases stuffed with cash to Martinelli at the presidential palace. more than 15 months have passed without any known proceedings.

The  Financial Pacific transactions case involving many of the Martinelli inner circle is the only one in which a diligence has been carried out recently.

Last month, prosecutor Hernán De León called for and was promised, assistance from Canada, where   Martinelli hs is alleged to have manipulated share prices of Petequilla Mines on the stock exchange using an account in Financial Pacific , involving a group of local  influence peddlers

The most advanced case is that of wiretapping 150 opposition politicians, journalists and businessmen. for which Martinelli was arrested on June 12 in Miami, where even a $10 million offer could not get him bail.

On  August 30  Federal Judge Edwin Torres declared him extraditable and last week Martinelli marked his first 100 days behind bars. If he is tried and convicted in Panama he could face a sentence of up to 21 years.



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13 minutes ago, MarieElaine said:

This is good news providing the court system in Panama gets its act together before he arrives otherwise he might be able to bribe someone to get a lower sentence.

Or avoid prosecution altogether.

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Date set for Martinelli pardons trial

Posted on October 2, 2017 in Panama

Post Views: 181

 FOUR MONTHS after ex-president Ricardo Martinelli was arrested in Miami to face  extradition proceedings, a Panama court, on October 13, is scheduled to begin hearings over the pardons he granted in the final hours of his term.

The criminal pardons include the frontman of the recently uncovered drug smuggling operation  in the Los Santos mayor’s office

The hearing was set by Judge José Ayú Prado, acting as judge of guarantees, at the request of the prosecutor of the case Abel Zamorano.

Meanwhile  Martinelli is detained in  a Miami detention center, while his Florida lawyers attempt get him off the extradition hook by filing a  habeas corpus.

If it fails, and he is returned to Panama, he will first face trial in wiretapping charges that, if he is found guilty, could bring a 21-year jail sentence. Other corruption investigations will follow.

“It is a public and notorious fact that he is deprived of his liberty abroad, in  an extradition process, so that the Judicial Office will carry out the steps  necessary

necessary to use the respective channels and diplomatic channels, so that the date and time of the hearing, is communicated to him and not the existence of the collection of copies admitted by the

Supreme Court of Justice, because that was already communicated to him before, “said a  Judicial Branch note.

This hearing was originally scheduled for June 21

But  could not be realized, because 11 days before Martinelli was arrested  near his mansion in Coral Gables, Miami. At that time, Zamorano asked Ayú Prado not to advance with the act, because the ex-president “is in

an uncertain judicial situation” Zamorano said that it would be prudent to wait until the Martinelli’s procedural situation is clarified in the United States, before setting a new date for an audience.

In June 2014, shortly before  leaving power, Martinelli promulgated 19 decrees granting 355 pardons, most of them to persons who had not committed political crimes – which is a constitutional condition to receive such benefit reports La Prensa.

The complaint was admitted by the full Supreme Court on June 2, 20



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US Supreme Court  denies Martinelli habeas corpus

Posted on October 2, 2017 in Panama

Martinelli options running out
Post Views: 290

RICARDO MARTINELLI’S efforts to dodge the bullet and avoid extradition to Panama to face trial got another setback on Monday,   October2   when The United States Supreme Court denied, a habeas

corpus, presented by the former president on July 24. The case had been assigned to Judge Clarence

Thomas, who had previously denied a bail in favor of Martinelli, arrested since June 12 in Miami, pending extradition to Panama. The bond was requested on July 26 and denied by Thomas five days late.

The full US Supreme Court discussed the habeas corpus on September 25 , but the decision was released on Monday.

On August 30, Federal judge Edwin Torres endorsed Martinelli’s extradition to Panama. The case was referred to the State, to  take the final decision. On  September 28 last, the Martinelli defense filed a habeas corpus – before the Southern District Court of Florida, demanding  demands Martinelli’s non-delivery to Panama, as well as his immediate release, alleging that Torres had no jurisdiction to act and that the extradition treaty between United States and Panama, signed in 1904, was not applicable in this case.



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

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