Alejandro Toledo: Peruvian Congress Unanimously Decides to Denounce Former President for Money Laundering
Former Peruvian President Alejandro Toledo has been denounced by the Peruvian Congress for corrupt practices after he created an off shore company through which to handle money and pay off debts. It has yet to be determined how he obtained the money.
In a unanimous vote by the unicameral Peruvian Congress of 87 to 0, the legislators denounced Toledo and his wife Eliane Karp for money laundering and conspiracy to commit an illegal act, according to Latin American Herald Tribune. The vote happened on Thursday.
The congress' investigation looked into allegations that Toledo bought a house and an office in the Peruvian capital of Lima worth $5 million in behalf of a Costa Rican company called Ecoteva. Toledo's mother-in-law, Eva Fernenburg, started the company.
According to Congressman Enrique Wong, Toledo took part in the formation of the company and he was involved in the purchase of the two properties in Lima's upscale neighborhood of Surco. The congressional inquiry recommended that Fernenburg as well as her lawyer David Eskenazi and businessman Josef Maiman should be charged as well.
The Peruvian newspaper La Republica reports congressmen from Toledo's party, Peru Posible, also voted to charge the former president. It explains that Ecoteva was set up for irregular monetary transfers with money from unknown sources.
Toledo argues that the money belonged to Maiman but investigations by the inquiry as well as two other government agencies, including the Public Ministry, could not find the source for the money.
"There have been transfers, and purchases made off-shore; this is a clear example of the alleged crime of money laundering," said congressman Vicente Zeballos. However, because the money's origin could not be found, some congressmen have alleged that it is the result of drug trafficking.
"The source of the funds could not only come from corruption but also drug trafficking," said congressman Juan Diaz Dios. The inquiry also found that Toledo used money to pay off mortgages on two houses, one in the capital and the other in the resort town of Punta Sal.
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