The regime of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo prevented the right to have a private defense attorney Monsignor Jose Leonardo Urbina Rodriguezpriest of the parish of Perpetuo Socorro, in Boaco, who will face trial on August 24 for the alleged crimes of rape and minor psychological injuries to the detriment of a minor under 14 years of age.
“I will be present at the main gate (of the Court) waiting for your decision (judicial resolution) which may be before starting the trial”the lawyer Francisco Gutiérrez wrote to Judge Edén Enrique Aguilar Castro, of the Third Court Specialized in Violence against Women, in his third request for intervention, 24 hours before the start of the process.
Gutiérrez has been appointed by the religious’s family as his private defender on four occasions, but the Ortega court has ignored the requests.
“The copy of evidence to the Prosecutor’s Office, the copy of the file, previous interviews with the accused to prepare the defense, will no longer have any use at this time”said the lawyer in the document received by the Judiciary at 9:16 in the morning of this Wednesday, August 23.
Gutiérrez requested that, at least, the presence at the trial of the elderly José Ángel Urbina, father of the priest, be authorized.
They ignore requests
The Ortega judge appointed public defender Jennifer Elieth Hernández Granera as his court-appointed attorney, despite the fact that on July 22, after admitting the resignation of his first private defender, he left open the possibility of appointing a new private defense attorney.
“It was the same Public Defender’s Office that of your own accord asked to want to defend Monsignor Urbina Rodríguez, despite the fact that his father appointed me as his lawyer”Gutierrez denounced.
For Gutierrez, “it’s clear” that this action by the Judiciary demonstrates that “The fundamental pillar of a process is missing, which is the impartiality of the judge.”.
The lawyer from Boaco indicated that he has asked the Public Defender’s Office to “step aside” of the trial, but they allege “who already exchanged evidence”.
“They say that they are going to refute the evidence, when they could do much more than that, but the reality is that they (the Public Defender’s Office) are simply accompanying the Prosecutor’s Office, in a clearly flawed process.”he insisted.
Gutierrez argued that “to refute is only to remain silent, which shows that they are leaving you alone in the face of an anticipated conviction”.
they had it “booked”
Since 2018, in his homilies, Monsignor Urbina Rodríguez called for the release of political prisoners, prayed for a Nicaragua in freedom and expressed solidarity with citizens who were protesting against the Government, detailed religious, released prisoners and Catholic parishioners from Boaco.
“That is why the regime of Daniel Ortega and Rosario Murillo had him signed, because they know that in some way he supported the blue and white struggle,” told CONFIDENTIAL a citizen who participated in the protests.
A parishioner who worked with Monsignor Urbina Rodríguez, also vicar of the pastoral area of Boaco, who has been in prison since July 13, indicates that he is so loved that for this reason people took to the streets to protest and demand their freedom, losing their fear.
In the record of the preliminary hearing, the only document of the process to which access has been obtained, it is indicated that the alleged violation was committed against a 14-year-old girl, whose parents are faithful devotees of the Catholic Church.
“Due to the degree of trust between the defendant and the victim’s grandmother, the defendant took advantage of this circumstance to approach the victim and gain her trust, to the point that the victim considered and recognized him as her godfather.”indicates the accusation.
In addition, he detailed that the alleged act was committed on three occasions: the first time in December 2021; the second last January; and the last one in April this year.
A dozen priests arrested
Ortega has imprisoned, in less than three months, ten priests of the Catholic Church. The first was the priest Manuel Garcia Rodriguez, allegedly accused of beating a woman; the second, Monsignor Urbina Rodriguez. The third is the priest Oscar Benavidez, that is investigated for ninety days by the Prosecutor’s Office due to a “phantom” crime, but of which the State of Nicaragua recognizes itself as “victim and offended”.
They were joined by the priests José Luis Díaz and Sadiel Eugarrios, first and second vicar of the San Pedro cathedral, respectively; Ramiro Tijerino, rector of the John Paul II University and in charge of the San Juan Bautista parish; the priest Raúl González and the seminarians Darvin Leyva and Melkin Sequeira.
While Monsignor Rolando Álvarez, also apostolic administrator of the Diocese of Estelí, is under house arrest, in a measure that the regime intends to disguise as “home shelter”, in his home in Managua, according to the police note published on Friday, August 19 .
The priests transferred to El Chipote correspond to the Diocese led by Monsignor Álvarez. They accompanied their spiritual leader with prayers, songs, prayers and the Eucharistic celebration during the 15 days that they remained besieged by dozens of riot police.
The initial group was 12 people, but three laymen managed to get out before the kidnapping. Monsignor Álvarez was surrounded by the Police since Thursday, August 4, when they prevented him from going to the Matagalpa cathedral, as part of his pastoral day.
The police justified the lockdown imposed on the priests for allegedly being investigated for “organizing violent groups” and “carrying out acts of hate.” “The people under investigation will remain at home,” the institution said.