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Guatemalan lawyer dismissed by US-international as ‘anti-corruption champion’

Guatemala’s attorney general against the sentence, Juan Francisco Santo, condemned the lack of support in his action and dismissed his boss, Attorney General Mara Consulos Boras, on Friday (23).

“It has been decided to remove the Division Attorney (FECI) of the Office of the Special Advocate against Punishment from his post,” the Ministry of Public Works said in a statement.

The text states that the “institutional” nature of the Attorney General’s office is “constantly abused and frequently abused, and that attempts are made to undermine the Attorney General’s” work, integrity, and dignity. “

Boras was later criticized for not supporting Sandoval’s work at FECI.

“Considering the embarrassment he was a victim of and the immediate distrust in the relationship, the employment relationship is now closed,” he adds. Sandoval was replaced by attorney Carla Valencula.

In an AFP interview on July 6, during a visit to the country by US Vice President Kamala Harris, Santo denounced harassment and lack of government support for her work.

Santowell’s work as part of the fight against corruption in Central America was one of the issues Harris addressed when he announced an executive committee to support the FECI.

In June, the head of US diplomacy, Anthony Blinken, expressed his concern to Guatemalan President Alejandro Chiamate about “efforts to remove anti-corruption offices such as the FECI.” The State Department called Sandoval an “anti-corruption champion.”

The FECI was created to work with the International Commission against Punishment in Guatemala (CICIG). However, the company closed in 2019 at the behest of then-President Jimmy Morales (2016-2020), who was accused of electoral fraud.

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These organizations uncovered a number of corruption cases, including customs fraud, which led to the resignation and imprisonment of President Otto Press (2012-2015).

A key transportation businessman, politician and alleged untouchable soldier was also investigated by the FECI in cases involving former President Elvaro Cola (2008-2012) alleging irregularities in the public transport contract.