Within the framework of the interpellation for the delivery of the passport to the Uruguayan drug trafficker Sebastián Marset, the Chancellor of the Republic, Francisco Bustillo, referred to the procedures followed by the consular services of the Republic.
He said that it was an administrative procedure, that Marset did not have an open case in Uruguay and that there was no international requisition until March 3.
Bustillo made a chronological report of the events. He said that on September 10, Marset was arrested in the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for allegedly carrying a false Paraguayan passport.
On September 14, the Consular Section of the Embassy of Uruguay in the United Arab Emirates reported the arrest of Marset in Dubai, for possessing a false Paraguayan passport when trying to embark for Turkey. “Information provided by the charge d’affaires of the Paraguayan embassy in Qatar with concurrence in the UAE”.
“It is not correct that the Chargé d’Affaires had warned of the danger of Marset, only that a Uruguayan had been arrested with an allegedly false passport and that he was a Uruguayan soccer player. This is how the Paraguayan Chargé d’Affaires presented it in society and the Uruguayan ambassador to Qatar, Jorge Seré, confirmed it, requesting consular assistance “, as is done with any Uruguayan, he said.
Bustillo added that on September 20, the Consular Section of the Paraguayan Embassy in Qatar stated that the passport was false and that Marset did not have Paraguayan nationality. “There is no communication from the authorities of Marset’s arrest.”
On October 20, the Consular Section made telephone contact with the detainee contacted by Marset’s lawyer in the UAE and by Dr. Alejandro Balbi, who was attending his case from Uruguay and who requested the processing of his passport.
“From the time this man was arrested until his passport was handed over, 77 days passed, when the normal thing is that in five days any Uruguayan who requests it can obtain a passport,” said the foreign minister.
He added that the General Directorate for Consular Affairs and Liaison responded by instructing the Consular Section to take the detainee’s fingerprints to corroborate his identity in the online computer system, with the National Civil Identification Directorate.
Bustillo assured that “there is coordination between the Ministries of the Interior and Foreign Affairs on a subject such as the consular issue in the issuance of the passport that cannot be issued capriciously. First, it is confirmed who he is and if he has an open case in Uruguay.”
“At the request of the legal representative, Marset’s family in Uruguay appeared before the consul and asked for help for Marset, who was in prison,” he remarked.
He said that on October 22, the National Directorate of Scientific Police issued a statement without open causes in the Republic. The process started could continue.
On October 28, the Consular Section reported that Marset was detained in the Dubai prison under the jurisdiction of the Consulate. The consul, at her family’s request, made a visit to verify the prison conditions and identity of the person. The identification of the detainee was confirmed.
That same day, the Travel Documentation Department requested Interpol ex officio, beyond what the regulations require, “if this man had any kind of international requisition.” Interpol reported that said citizen lacked international requisition, and reported that there was a whereabouts request, which does not inhibit the continuation of the consular procedure. Likewise, the passport documentation was entered into the online computer system.
The foreign minister noted that on November 24, the Scientific Police responded to Civil Identification that Marset had no open cases in Uruguay.
He explained that on November 25, a Foreign Ministry cadet withdrew 295 passport books from the National Directorate of Civil Identification, including Marset’s, and the Travel Department prepared passports for the respective consulates, through a diplomatic bag.
He added that on November 29, the Travel Documentation Department received the communication from Marset’s lawyer to know the date of the diplomatic bag, which had already been dispatched and that the next one would be within a month.
Likewise, the lawyer Balbi requested to know another delivery procedure and was informed that with the approval of Marset he could deliver it to a person with power in Montevideo.
On November 30, the Consular Section sent a letter of authorization or power of attorney signed by Marset and that day it was withdrawn by the authorized person.
Bustillo assured that the international requirement of Marset is from March 3, 2022 and that “all the steps that corresponded within the framework of the decree and consular action were fulfilled, as consular assistance”
“There was no express processing, because 77 days passed since Marset was arrested, and 33 days after visiting him for the first time in prison and taking his fingerprints. There was no unusual procedure. Everything was done within the natural and normal consular assistance on any occasion and especially considering who Marset was, we only found out in March”, indicated the Secretary of State.
Bustillo assured that the Uruguayan passport did not free Marset, but rather the justice of the UAE from having a false passport. He could have been deported and arrived in Uruguay and with his identity card go to Argentina or Brazil without problems.