CBI will reconvene Cartes

The Bicameral Commission of Investigation (CBI) of money laundering, had its seventh meeting on Tuesday morning. On the occasion they treated the preceding crimes as smuggling. Initially, the guests were Julio Fernández, head of the Customs Department, and Horacio Cartes, former President of the Republic. However, the latter decided not to attend.

With Fernández, the members of the CBI discussed the functions of Customs, their initiatives and what they are doing to combat smuggling. The former president announced that he was not going to participate in the meeting through his lawyer Pedro Ovelar. He himself alleged that Cartes is a senator for life, as well as elected and proclaimed. Therefore, he does not have the obligation to attend according to article 341 of the Civil Procedure Code, which establishes that “the President of the Republic and the members of Congress are not obliged to appear and must only declare in writing.” In other words, the members of the CBI must submit their queries to him in writing.

“The appearance is not a judicial process. For it to be a process, it requires the presentation of a prior accusation. We cannot accuse and much less punish”, said Jorge Querey, senator of the CBI. Regarding the meeting with Fernández, he replied that he himself spoke about emblematic cases of smuggling cases and also about the shared routes of organized crime. “They promised some progress achieved thanks to international collaborations. For example, some seals on merchandise that can be controlled and monitored internationally”, he pointed out.

Querey stated that they will ask a judge for an order so that he can attend. If he still refuses to appear, Cartes is exposed to a fine to be defined or 15 days in prison. The former president was declared significantly corrupt by the United States on July 22. He was also accused by Executive Ministers Arnaldo Giuzzio and René Fernández of having links to organized crime.

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