Otto Guevara, “It’s a very strong cement cartel that wants to get me out”

QCOSTARICA – On Wednesday, the Goicoechea Magistrates’ Court sentenced former presidential and lawmaker candidate Otto Guevara to three years in prison for four offenses of lying under oath. In addition, he was excluded from the public service for six years.

Otto Guevara

“Otto Guevara is declared responsible for four offenses of lying in the affidavit, in material competition, to the detriment of the duties of the public service. As the main sentence, he is sentenced to one year in prison for each of the offenses for a total penalty of four years, which by application of the criminal rules of material competition for offenses is set at three years in prison ”, declared the judge to charge to read the sentence.

Guevara has been given a suspended sentence for a period of five years, during which he cannot commit intentional crimes punishable by sentences of more than six months in prison; failing to comply, he will be revoked and he will have to serve a three-year prison sentence.

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In addition, Guevara will also have to pay the state the sum of 10 million colones, after a civil action for damages has been declared by the Comptroller General of the Republic for the crimes committed.

The prosecution accused Otto Guevara of failing to provide information about a company in the Virgin Islands, of which he was listed as a shareholder. This, according to the prosecution, happened while he was a legislator during the period 2014-2018, while he was a representative of the Partido Movimiento Libertario.

Currently, the legislator is candidate for the post of deputy for the next period (2022-2026) of the Partido Unión Liberal, to which if his sentence is strengthened he will not be able to exercise his functions if elected.

Guevara denies any wrongdoing and accuses a cartel linked to the “cementazo” corruption case of wanting him to leave public office.

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The former presidential candidate and legislator is currently under investigation by the Public Prosecutor’s Office (Ministerio Publico) for the alleged offense of trading in influence in the “caso cementazo”, the cement scandal of the previous government which includes Juan Carlos Bolaños and former lawmaker Morales Zapata.

Read more: Fiscalia charges Juan Carlos Bolaños, ex-deputy and ex-head of the Treasury, for the Cemento Chino affair

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Investigators are awaiting a court order to examine Guevara’s phone in order to conduct a forensic analysis of the constant calls found between Guevara and Bolaños.

Guevara has publicly stated that he will appeal the conviction and continue his election campaign.

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