HomeNewsBriefCourt Annuls 'Narco-Pardons' Case Against Peru Ex-President
BRIEF

Court Annuls 'Narco-Pardons' Case Against Peru Ex-President

ELITES AND CRIME / 2 APR 2014 BY CHARLES PARKINSON EN

A court in Peru has annulled reports from a parliamentary commission calling for the indictment of ex-President Alan Garcia over links to a "narco-pardons" scandal, sparking protests and spats about this highly politicized corruption case.

The Fifth Constitutional Court of Lima made the decision on March 31 based on an infringement of Garcia's rights of defense, reported La Republica. Politician Enrique Wong, who sat on the "mega-commission" that investigated Garcia, told Peru21 the legal issue stemmed from the commission's failure to inform the ex-president last year of whether he was being asked to appear as a witness or a suspect.

SEE ALSO: Peru News and Profiles

The decision caused public outcry, with protests staged in Lima's Plaza San Martin. It also sparked a spat between Garcia and current President Ollanta Humala, after the latter criticized Garcia and said he "should not try to sneak away from an investigation" if he had nothing to hide. Garcia responded by accusing Humala of supporting the commission for political motives.

In the aftermath of the ruling, commission head Sergio Tejada announced plans to appeal the decision.

With the commission formally dissolved after issuing its final report in January, an entirely new one would have to be assembled to begin the investigation from scratch, should the case against Garcia be pursued once more.

InSight Crime Analysis

The mega-commission was originally approved in 2011 to investigate alleged unconstitutional and corrupt acts by Garcia during his second term as president between 2006 and 2011. The investigation resulted in accusations that Garcia freed 400 drug traffickers in a so-called "pay-for-pardons" scandal.

While Garcia claimed they were low-level traffickers released to relieve pressure on the prison system, evidence suggested some were much more important as the commission's investigation gained traction in late 2013. In December, the commission declared Garcia had committed "constitutional infractions" and in the final January report, it called for Garcia's indictment to face criminal charges.

His possible escape from such a fate on a legal technicality, should the appeal prove fruitless, will be a bitter blow to his opponents, who will see it as further evidence of Garcia's power to escape prosecution, a pattern common among Peru's political elites.

However, Garcia's accusation that the investigation against him is politically motivated could also hold some truth, particularly as reports have widely speculated he is gearing up to run for a third presidential term in the country's 2016 general election.

share icon icon icon

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

What are your thoughts? Click here to send InSight Crime your comments.

We encourage readers to copy and distribute our work for non-commercial purposes, with attribution to InSight Crime in the byline and links to the original at both the top and bottom of the article. Check the Creative Commons website for more details of how to share our work, and please send us an email if you use an article.

Was this content helpful?

We want to sustain Latin America’s largest organized crime database, but in order to do so, we need resources.

DONATE

Related Content

ELITES AND CRIME / 17 NOV 2021

On November 5, 2019, threatening pamphlets appeared on the streets of El Callao, a mining town in Venezuela's eastern state…

ARGENTINA / 5 APR 2017

The former president of Argentina was indicted on charges of leading a money laundering scheme while in office, yet another…

COLOMBIA / 13 FEB 2014

The emergence of allegations made by an incarcerated drug baron that he funded the political activities of Colombia's former President…

About InSight Crime

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution Met With Uproar

6 MAY 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime launched its latest investigation, Venezuela’s Cocaine Revolution¸ accompanied by a virtual panel on its findings. The takeaways from this three-year effort, including the fact that Venezuela…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela Drug Trafficking Investigation and InDepth Gender Coverage

29 APR 2022

On May 4, InSight Crime will be publishing The Cocaine Revolution in Venezuela, a groundbreaking investigation into how the Venezuelan government regulates the cocaine trade in the country. An accompanying event,…

THE ORGANIZATION

InDepth Coverage of Juan Orlando Hernández

22 APR 2022

Ever since Juan Orlando Hernández was elected president of Honduras in 2014, InSight Crime has provided coverage of every twist and turn during his rollercoaster time in office, amid growing…

THE ORGANIZATION

Venezuela's Cocaine Revolution

15 APR 2022

On May 4th, InSight Crime will publish a groundbreaking investigation on drug trafficking in Venezuela. A product of three years of field research across the country, the study uncovers cocaine production in…

LA ORGANIZACIÓN

Widespread Coverage of InSight Crime MS13 Investigation

8 APR 2022

In a joint investigation with La Prensa Gráfica, InSight Crime recently revealed that four of the MS13’s foremost leaders had been quietly released from…