The Ricardo Martinelli “courtroom soap/drama” has entered a new phase as the ex-president’s lawyers seek to persuade a Florida judge that the ex-president who fled his own country, is not a flight risk.
Nartinelli has been behind bars for nearly eight months and is seeking bail pending his extradition to Panama, where he is wanted in multiple corruption cases.
His Miami lawyer, Marco Jiménez, has requested a hearing to answer any “concern” or “minimal doubt” that federal judge Marcia Cooke may have, after the Miami attorney’s office warned of “unacceptable risk” of flight if the billionaire ex-ruler is released on bail. The prosecution also maintains that the conditions for a bond are “inadequate.”
The hearing was requested on Monday, February 5. “If the Court considers that there are merits in these arguments, the President Martinelli would appreciate the opportunity to address these concerns and provide the Court with the guarantees it requires “, says Jiménez.
This would be Martinelli’s second hearing before Judge Cooke. On January 23, the former president appeared before the judge, who then denied a writ of habeas corpus in his favor.
Although that day, Cooke promised that the decision denying the habeas corpus would be formalized – in writing – Tuesday, February 6, instead it was announced that the document will be
finally released on February 13, in response to a request for postponement by the lawyers of Martinelli (and to which the prosecution opposed).
Martinelli has been detained in Miami since June 12, 2017, pending extradition. His delivery to Panama was certified by Judge Edwin Torres on August 31. That decision that was examined and supported by Judge Cooke at a hearing held two weeks ago.
Martinelli’s two sons and his former private secretary “Chichi” de Obarrio who fled Panama, have outstanding Interpol red alerts against them.