Ex-president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski jailed

PERU - In Brief 10 Apr 2019 by Roberto Abusada

Today a judge ordered the preliminary detention of the ex-president for a 10-day period after a prosecutor began investigating him on money laundering charges related to the financial services that his Miami based firm performed in two infrastructure projects (the Interoceanic Highway and the Olmos Irrigation Project); both in charge of the Brazilian company Odebrecht. While some of these services took place while Kuczynski was minister in the Alejandro Toledo government, he argued that he was totally separated from the firm´s management. These charges caused Kuczynski´s resignation on February of last year. It is unclear why the laundering charges have been levied as services were in fact performed. Apparently, the fact that other individuals close to the ex-president had access to joint accounts with him and had access to the funds under management, is being used by the prosecutor to include the money laundering charge. A long-time secretary and his driver have both been detained as well. The judge´s decision did surprise many, including Prime Minister Salvador del Solar, since Kuczynski was fully cooperating with the inquiries and already had a court order that barred him from leaving the country. We would not be surprised if the prosecutor´s plan is to turn the short detention period into a much longer preliminary jailing as in the case of Keiko Fujimori and ex-president Ollanta Humala and his wife.

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