Former President Ricardo Martinelli (2009_2014) is on the list of 25 people for whom the Public Ministry has requested a trial in the New Business case, the investigation that follows the purchase of Editora Panamá América, SA (Epasa) in 2010, with allegedly public funds.
All are prosecuted for alleged money laundering.
Martinelli was called to investigate this case on July 2, 2020. But when he went to the Office of the First Prosecutor against Organized Crime - he took advantage of Article 25 of the Constitution in order not to testify against himself and argued that he is protected by the principle of specialty established in the extradition treaty between Panama and the United States.
Later, the prosecutor Emeldo Márquez dismissed his position, arguing that the Public Ministry has "an obligation to prosecute crimes."
The remaining 24 in the list have a common denominator: many were contractors of the state during the Martinelli administration and face other court cases that are related to each other reports La Prensa.
Panama | Martinelli...Repeats Court Delays - Next Predictable. Oh...I have cancer, I could die and where is the judge I could pay off! Oh...Political persecution, threaten witnesses and prosecutors. Next...Meet with the Panama National Assembly at a hospital. (Take care Martinelli with a little wine)! What's a little time in jail slap on the wrist. Forgot to obtain a presidential pardon from... Panama president Cortiz, but then he did not plan to get any money for you, did he? Martinelli, Martinelli, you are starting to look more and more like a fat cat...pig, oink!