The justice of the Ortega regime continues to sentence prisoners of conscience. The economist Harry Chávez and the digital activist, Yoel Sandinowere sentenced to ten years in prison plus a fine of more than 50,000 cordobas and eleven years and six months plus a fine of 42,000 cordobas, respectively, confirmed relatives of both political prisoners accused of the crimes of “undermining national integrity.” and “propagation of false news”.
Judge Nadia Camila Tardencilla, head of the Second District Criminal Trial Court, found Chavez guilty in a trial held last week in the central courts of Managua. Tardencilla also condemned the student leaders Max Jerez, Lesther Alemán and the journalist Miguel Mora in hearings held at the Judicial Assistance Directorate (DAJ), El Chipote.
Among the evidence presented by the Prosecutor’s Office against Chávez included an alleged Facebook post, where a woman with the Nicaraguan flag was observed questioning the Government. However, her relatives denounced that the quality of the image indicated that it did not correspond to the real profile of the accused. On previous occasions, Chávez’s relatives also rejected his alleged publications about the Renacer Law, since they assure that he maintained rigorous care of his social networks.
Chávez, 64, held until 2017 the position of coordinator of the Electoral Program of the Institute for Development and Democracy (Ipade), whose status was canceled along with eight other organizations in December 2018. He was already retired when the facilities of the institution, like another dozen NGOs, were taken over by the Police.
Sentence after three months of waiting
The young Yoel Sandino waited three months after the trial held behind closed doors, on November 25, 2021, to hear his sentence. The key evidence against Sandino is publications made through the Free Minds page, which the young man himself created to denounce the violations of human rights and freedom of expression that have occurred in the country since the social outbreak of 2018.
His mother, Yamilet Ibarra, defends her son’s innocence. She assures that “expressing oneself and thinking differently is not a crime”. Her family has learned of the legal situation of the 25-year-old from the same, since the entire judicial process has been under total secrecy.
Chávez and Sandino were arrested during the wave of repression orchestrated by the Ortega regime on the eve of the general elections of November 2021, which allowed Daniel Ortega and his wife, Rosario Murillo, to be re-elected as a result of a process without political competition. Both prisoners of conscience are imprisoned in the Jorge Navarro Penitentiary System, known as La Modelo, in Tipitapa.
Ortega justice has sentenced 54 prisoners of conscience -including Chávez and Sandino- of the 68 who have been confirmed to be in prison and were captured during 2021, mainly between the end of May and November.
requires medical attention
Chavez’s relatives are concerned about his physical and mental state. They assured that he has a boil in his back that requires minor surgery, but has not yet been treated. Also, he has problems with his teeth and although they have been pointing it out for about two months, he still has not been checked in prison. He also has trouble falling asleep; “He is mentally unwell,” said a relative, who for security reasons preferred to remain anonymous.