Federal judge Claudio Bonadío has charged former President Cristina Kirchner in the so-caled “notebooks scandal” case and accused her of being the leader of an “illicit organization” that awarded government contracts to private companies in exchange for kickbacks.
Bonadío has also called for her to be placed in pre-trial arrest, but since Kirchner is currently a senator she has congressional immunity (called fueros in Spanish), which means she can’t be sent to jail. In fact, for that to happen, her peers must vote in favor of stripping her of that immunity first. According to local media reports, judge Bonadío has not made such a request to the Upper House yet, since he is apparently waiting for a Federal Chamber to review his decision to charge her today. If the Chamber upholds it, then he is expected to officially ask the Senate to remove her immunity.
It would be up to a Peronist majority in the Senate now to decide whether she loses it or not.
The judge, who has become somewhat of Cristina Kirchner’s nemesis, also charged former Planning Ministry officials Julio De Vido (already in prison) and Roberto Baratta. His decision to move forward on them comes after analyzing the information detailed in a series of notebooks that came to light a few weeks ago, which described a well-oiled corruption scheme involving government officials and prominent business leaders in Argentina during the three Kirchner administrations and that was allegedly run by Néstor and Cristina Kirchner.