Federal judge Claudio Bonadio launched a criminal investigation on Friday after allegedly receiving a death threat the day before through his secretary, according to Infobae. The case is to be handled by judge Norberto Oyarbide.
Bonadio thrust himself himself into the political spotlight last year after initiating an investigation on hotel company Hotesur, in which President Cristina Kirchner is a shareholder. The suit itself was presented by congresswoman Margarita Stolbized, and accused the company of incorporation and tax irregularities.
The judge ordered a raid on the company’s address in Capital Federal, but found it was a lawyer’s office, who claimed he’d owned it for more than four years. The other main alleged anomaly the raid uncovered involved their tax books. According to the results, Hotesur’s last tax return was 2010’s, presented after being investigated by the IGJ for (the organ in charge of keeping track of companies ) missing its legal deadline. Because of these results, Bonadio ordered AFIP (the equivalent of the US’ IRS) to present Cristina and her children’s assets declarations.
Hotesur answered these accusations through a statement, which pointed out “The business has fulfilled every tax obligation it had” and also said it was “in the middle of a normalization process regarding our tax documentation before the IGJ for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 periods, clarifying everything that was presented before the AFIP-DGI. Regarding the legal address, the statement informed that a request for it to be transferred from Ciudad de Buenos Aires to Santa Cruz is “being processed.”
Since then, Bonadio became a major opponent of the country’s ruling party. The Council of Magistrates’ “Frente Para la Victoria” members, led by executive’s representative Julian Alvarez, presented a dictum to suspend the judge for “Bad Performance,” but didn’t get the nine votes out of 13 required to send his file to a judge’s jury.
After this, Academic counselor Jorge Candis introduced a motion for a 30% cut to Bonadio’s salary due to bad performance regarding two cases he led in the 1990’s, which was approved as only seven votes out of 13 were needed.
In another attempt to remove him from the case, Hotesur’s president Romina Mercado petitioned for him to be removed from the investigation, but her request was denied. Despite this, she appealed and now the Federal Appeal Court, composed of judges who have criticized Bonadio for not letting the defense access the files, is expected to announce a decision the next few days.
Now, there’s another chapter in the feud between government and parts of the judiciary who seem to be questioning the government. So if you think you can hardly keep track of everything that’s going on regarding Nisman’s suicide/murder, I have bad news for you: There’s a lot more to read about because Claudio Bonadio’s case is starting to make noise again and Cristina is involved in this one too.