Defense lawyer reveals Dominican Republic´s putrid judiciary
Santo Domingo.- The lawyerfor suspended judge Awilda Reyes, Thomas Castro on Friday blasted presidentDanilo Medina, former leader Leonel Fernandez, politico and tycoon MiguelVargas Justice minister Francisco Dominguez and the members civic movement CivicParticipation, accusing them of the corruption gripping the entire Judiciary.
"Neither Citizen Participationnor Dominguez Brito are interested in a clean justice, because if they were theywould’ve charged the judges who acquitted (senator) Felix Bautista; the judgeswho struck down the unconstitutionality of the Sun Land loans or the deputieswho approved with their four feet up the Barrick Gold contract and would’ve beenin prison those who were lobbying for the handover of Loma Miranda to Falcondo(nickel)" the lawyer said.
Quoted by acento.com.do,Castro accused Dominguez of directing a “mafia of prosecutors.”
"He has an inspectoratedepartment within the Justice Ministry that monitors and investigates; however,the members of the institution of justice stole 600 kilos of drugs and sold it,then grabbed two apprehended two prosecutors because someone has to be grabbed,"Castro said.
Referring to the reportsubmitted by Dominguez, who initiated the investigation against his client andfive other judges for prevarication, the attorney called it a politicalstrategy after the Supreme Court justices accepted the writ of habeas corpus handeddown to acquit senator Bautista. "That’s what that is, to create a storywith a great capacity for imagination."
"Remember that afterthe acquittal in Bautista´s case Dominguez said he was not appealing because hedidn’t believe in justice and Mariano Germán peels out saying he did believe inhis judges; but days after Mariano loses confidence in his judges " he said.
After that, Castro saidDominguez allegedly heard what was happening because he has a team of"cálieces" (finks) in the Attorney General’s Office, tapping judges’phones and placing microphones in their offices.
He also said politicalinterests seek a change of judges, who respond to Fernandez but allegedly obey Medina’sguidelines, and accused former Justice minister Radhames Jimenez of formingpart of Fernandez´s group.
Judge Reyes accused Jimenezof being the person ordering, through Valera, rulings to release defendants incases of contract killings and money laundering.
He noted however that sectorswant the heads of Germán and other judges.
"What could happenin the country in the coming months when Danilo Medina wants to remove Leonel´sjudges and put his in? … Something serious and big is happening in power thatthey need judges who could rule in their favor."
He also implicated Vargas,president of the pro-government PRD party, as part of the alleged group ofinterested politicians, who demanded the release of Pedro Brand city councilmanEricson de los Santos, as part of the agreement with Medina.
"Miguel is a greatpolitical merchant and an individual who benefits from everything. There´s thecase Peravia (failed bank) and he´s involved, that this was done and he´sinvolved, he bought some land for a million pesos and then sold it to theDominican government for 12 million dollars," said the lawyer, inreference to the scandal in 2002 with the transaction of land in Samana for theHotel Hispaniola, in Santo Domingo.
He said if they tell ajudge with a low salary, who has neither bodyguards nor a bullet-proof vehicle,to hand down a ruling, they’ll do it.
Castro criticized formerCitizen Participation director Francisco Alvarez of disclosing what Reyes hadtold them at the meeting on November 23. "In Awilda´s case if she hadasked me I would’ve told her not to attend because it´s not the first time theyact with disloyalty and betrayal," he said and called them an entity whichrecommends judges and prosecutors as well as occupants for political posts."Its members participate in decision-making and power sharing."
Money and signature
In relation to the allegedbribes and a receipt signed by Reyes and also suspended judge Francisco Valerain Germán´s presence, Castro denied its veracity; and said his client did signher name on a document that was then showcased however not be certain that he has been with his own hand.
"The importantthing would be to ask Pancho (Alvarez) how much they gave to him to come outwith that ridiculousness,?" Castro said regarding Alvarez´s statements inwhich Reyes acknowledged what she had stated earlier.
"Here it’spossible for a judge or prosecutor do someone a favor or do something forsomeone who asks and having done that, someone comes and bring a gift," hesaid but didn’t specify if that was his client’s case, but didn’t deny that thealleged instructions from higher-ups included Arias and Jimenez.
He said three differentlaboratories would conduct calligraphy tests to verify whether the handwritten letterhad Reyes´ signature on the receipt supposedly made by German for the two judgesto declare how the money flowed for such deals.
“They will throw Awildainto the arena of the Roman circus," Castro said, to be eaten by the lions.
"Most likely theDominican Republic will be free of corruption, all judges will be serious andapparently from that, the country has been spared," he said, mocking the country´slegal situation.
He affirmed that the arrestwarrant issued against Reyes is “inadmissible and illegal,” adding thatinvestigators who searched her home seized a couple of laptops and somepersonal papers and took, allegedly “fabricate a case against here”.