“I sense that you will know I am innocent,” said Amado Boudou as he arrived just past ten this morning at Commodore Py 2000 for a second round of pleadings. The former Vice President is defending himself against accusations that he falsified documents for the transfer of a Hondra CRX Del Sol, model 92, which he claims he bought in Mar del Plata in 1993.
Federal Judge Stella Maris Scandura sentenced him to three years in prison for being a primary accomplice in “ideological falsity.” She also required that he forfeit the car. The decision follows charges from Federal Judge Claudio Bonadio, who in May accused Boudou of receiving the Honda with falsified documents. Today, Boudou’s defense attorneys, Jacobo Grossman and Martin Magram, were expected to argue for his acquittal.
The case is an uphill battle for Boudou. Prosecutor Scandura said it was evident that Boudou, along with three other defendants, falsified his home address and entered fraudulent signatures to muddy the details of the transfer. Boudou gave three conflicting stories of when and how he bought the flashy red convertible, and who has used it since. María Graciela Taboada de Piñero, former owner of the Automotive Registry 2 of Buenos Aires, manager Alberto Soto, and Agustina Seguín, ex-wife of Boudou, have all been sentenced to three years in prison.
The crime is small, but its implications are large. Boudou was the first Vice President in Argentina’s history to face an oral trial. He is the highest-ranking official of the Kirchnerist government to come before a jury. Though his charges do not relate to politics, they cannot bode well for other Kirchnerist officials accused of corruption. The sentence may have a domino effect, hailing more members of the last administration to court.