Panama president values corruption scandal involving predecessor at nearly $100 million

May 6, 2015
3 Comments

PANAMA CITY — Panama may have lost nearly $100 million to government corruption during the administration of President Ricardo Martinelli (2009-2014), his successor said in an interview published Wednesday.

Martinelli, who has been out of the country for three months, is currently under investigation by the Supreme Court for alleged involvement in inflating government contracts by $45 million.

Several former ministers, senior government officials, businessmen and a judge have either been jailed or face trial for alleged corruption and illegal enrichment.

“The figure for patrimonial loss, which is in the process of being recovered, could be nearing $100 million,” President Juan Carlos Varela said in an interview with the newspaper La Prensa.

Varela said the tally could rise further as investigators uncover the full extent of the corruption.

Some of the worst cases have been traced to an aid program for disadvantaged school children, a tax company and the administration of parking facilities at Panama’s Tocumen International Airport.

Martinelli has said on repeated occasions that he and his party are victims of “political persecution” by Varela.

Facebook Comments

You may be interested

Weary Venezuelans in low-turnout win for ruling party
Latin America
395 views
Latin America
395 views

Weary Venezuelans in low-turnout win for ruling party

AFP/ Alexander Martinez and Esteban Rojas - December 10, 2018

Venezuelans stayed away in droves Sunday from municipal elections, handing a victory to the ruling party -- but with just…

Brazil’s Bolsonaro completes cabinet with rightist environment chief
Brazil
742 views
Brazil
742 views

Brazil’s Bolsonaro completes cabinet with rightist environment chief

AFP - December 9, 2018

Brazilian president-elect Jair Bolsonaro, a longtime climate-change skeptic, has named a rightist lawyer with a contentious background to be environment…

Costa Rica to purchase eight new trains from Chinese company
Costa Rica
999 views
Costa Rica
999 views

Costa Rica to purchase eight new trains from Chinese company

Alexander Villegas - December 9, 2018

The Costa Rican Railroad Institute (INCOFER) announced that it will buy eight new trains from CRRC Quingdao Sifang Co. Ltd,…