The Ortega justice will present about eleven publications on social networks as part of the evidence package against the opposition and political prisoner, Yubrank Suazo, allegedly accused of “conspiracy to undermine” and “propagation of false news.” However, his lawyer, Mynor Curtis, points out that his client only exercised her right to freedom of expression, endorsed in the Political Constitution of Nicaragua.
According to the brief for the exchange of information and evidence presented during the initial hearing, held this Tuesday, May 31, at the Judicial Assistance Directorate (DAJ), El Chipote, “there are some alleged publications by Yubrank on social networks,” as a result of a search for information on “open networks” by the Prosecutor’s Office, explained the lawyer in an interview with the program Tonightwhich is broadcast on CONFIDENCIAL’s YouTube channel, due to television censorship.
“When this evidence is reproduced in the oral and public trial, really, we will be able to demonstrate that there is no conspiracy to undermine national integrity, but simply the constitutional exercise that Yubrank has of freedom of thought and that can be manifested in written, oral, private, public, individual or collective form. They are rights that the Constitution grants to Yubrank and therefore, criminal law has no place when rights that the Constitution regulates are being exercised…”, Curtis expressed.0
Suazo is the most recent political prisoner of the Ortega regime, after a wave of arrests carried out in the context of the general votes in 2021. A year later, 61 people, including former candidates for the presidency, social, student, civic leaders, journalists and lawyers , are sentenced to between seven and thirteen years in prison. The also member of the Civic Alliance for Justice and Democracy was violently detained by police the morning of Wednesday, May 18, 2022, in Masaya and taken to Chipote.
At the hearing this Tuesday, the Police did not allow Suazo’s parents to enter the police complex, citing security and health measures due to the covid-19 pandemic. In the case of Curtis there were no problems.
Contrary to other judicial processes, Judge Nadia Camila Tardencilla Rodríguez, head of the Second Criminal District Court of Managua, allowed the lawyer to speak with his client. Curtis explained the judicial process to him, and on his part, Suazo informed him that he was physically and spiritually well; that he inform his parents that they had not beaten him.
Crimes applied to other political prisoners
The crimes that the Ortega justice imputes to Suazo have been used against other opponents arrested, prosecuted and sentenced in judicial processes full of irregularities.
“It became clear that the regime continues to commit the same arbitrariness of holding secret trials in Chipote, which is illegal,” denounced the Nicaraguan Center for Human Rights (Cenidh) through its Twitter account. In addition, he questioned that the judge confirmed the preventive detention against the opponent and that the process was declared “complex processing”, which doubles the time for the trial, which has not yet been scheduled.
🔴URGENT| The judicial repression against political prisoners continues, this morning an initial hearing was held against @SuazoYubrankit became clear that the ORMU regime continues to commit the same arbitrariness of holding secret trials in the #chipotewhich is illegal. pic.twitter.com/Tecn49nYYJ
— Cenidh (@cenidh) May 31, 2022
In the previous legal proceedings against prisoners of conscience held captive in Chipote and other prison systems, the defenders pointed out that the Prosecutor’s Office was unable to prove the commission of the crimes. However, that was avoided by the battery of judges related to Ortega, who sentenced the prisoners of conscience in marathon days, without considering the defenses’ allegations.
In this case, Curtis explained that the Prosecutor’s Office must prove that the publications on social networks actually belong to Suazo and later, that said information is false.
Regarding the crime of impairment, the Public Ministry must show how “Yubrank was conspiring to commit impairment, since this crime is against the territory and is committed when people are trying to make part of the Nicaraguan state independent or are trying to subjugate part of the state of Nicaragua to another nation, and also talks about the nature of sovereignty, but sovereignty lies in the people and the people exercised freely and voluntarily on November 7 the right to vote… the nature of sovereignty does not it has been affected”, and that is part of what will be argued in the trial, advanced the defender.
Other irregularities that Curtis noticed is that during the preliminary hearing, the Ortega justice imposed a public defender on Suazo, denying him his right to appoint a trusted lawyer. Likewise, he pointed out that the limitations to communicate freely with his client persist, as established by law. That happened with other prisoners of conscience, whom he only saw during the trial hearings.
The monitoring mechanism for political prisoners indicates that there are 182 in Nicaragua, including the 61 convicted this year: 45 for impairment, of those, 12 were also accused of spreading false news. There is no information on the rest of prisoners of conscience.
Of the 61 inmates with a final sentence, 28 are in the police cells of El Chipote and are victims of solitary confinement; 11 are in jail at home with permanent police surveillance; and the other 22 are distributed in different prisons in the country, including the women’s prison, La Esperanza. Suazo joins them, becoming prisoner 183 of the Ortega regime.
In 2018, the opponent was imprisoned for the first time and accused of allegedly committing acts of terrorism, attempted murder, threats with weapons and obstruction of public services. In June 2019 he was released along with other political prisoners under the controversial Amnesty Law created by Ortega.