78.6 F
New York
Friday, May 24, 2024

Peruvian President Boluarte’s rules out resignation amid Rolex investigation

WorldPeruvian President Boluarte’s rules out resignation amid Rolex investigation

Peruvian President Dina Boluarte on Saturday said she would not resign after her house was raided as part of inquiries into possible illicit enrichment and failure to declare ownership of luxury watches.

Some 20 officials from the public prosecutor’s office and 20 police raided Boluarte’s house on Friday night, and the palace on Saturday morning.

“I took office with clean hands and thus I will retire from the presidency in 2026,” she said at a press conference, calling the raids a “disproportionate” measure and “abusive”.

Peru’s President Dina Boluarte in Lima last month. Photo: Luis Iparraguirre / Peru Presidency / Handout via Reuters

Boluarte’s house is located in the Lima district of Surquillo, near the palace where she works.

“Personnel from the palace provided all the facilities for the diligence requested,” the presidency said on social media platform X, formerly Twitter, adding that it was carried out “normally and without any incident”.

However, Peruvian Prime Minister Gustavo Adrianzen criticised the raids. “The political noise that is being made is serious, affecting investments and the entire country,” he wrote on X.

“What has happened in the last few hours is disproportionate and unconstitutional actions.”

Two weeks ago, prosecutors began preliminary inquiries following a media report by internet programme La-Encerrona that the president possessed several Rolex watches.

The inquiry intended to establish whether there were grounds for a formal investigation of the president.

‘Not aliens’: Peru officials say 2 seized doll-like figures contain paper, metal

Boluarte, in office since December 2022, has acknowledged that she owns Rolex watches, which she said she had bought with money she earned since she was young.

The prosecutor’s office had tried unsuccessfully last Wednesday to conduct a check of the watches at Boluarte’s office, but her lawyers said there was a clash of diary appointments and sought to reschedule the appointment.

The raid was requested by the public prosecutor and authorised by the Supreme Court of Preparatory Investigation.

It came after prosecutors refused Boluarte’s request for more time to respond to a subpoena demanding she furnish proof of purchase for her watches.

Prosecutors also want to know if she has reported the Rolex watches on her income statements.

Police officers guard the area in front of Peruvian President Diana Boluarte’s residence during a raid in Lima on March 30. Photo: EPA-EFE

If Boluarte is indicted in the case, a trial could not take place until after her term ends in July 2026 or she is impeached, according to the constitution.

Congress potentially could seek her dismissal on grounds of “moral incapacity,” but that would require the unlikely cooperation of the right-leaning groups that control the parliament – and are Boluarte’s main support – with their left-wing rivals.

The government comptroller has announced it would review Boluarte’s asset declarations from the past two years to search for any irregularities.

Boluarte became Peru’s first woman president after leftist leader Castillo tried to dissolve Congress and rule by decree, leading to his quick ouster and arrest.

Violent protests demanding Boluarte step down and fresh elections be held followed, with almost 50 people killed in the ensuing crackdown. Prosecutors are investigating her on charges that security forces used excessive and lethal force.

Additional reporting by Agence France-Presse

Source link

Check out our other content

Check out other tags:

Most Popular Articles