The U.S. Justice Department announced Wednesday that Murillo and his former commander-in-chief, Sergio Mendes, were arrested last week on criminal charges related to corruption and money laundering. The couple has been charged “Receiving bribes paid by an American company and individuals to secure a contract with the Bolivian government” Then use the US financial system to launder funds.
It is alleged that between November 2019 and April 2020, three U.S. citizens paid Bolivian officials $ 602,000 to secure a $ 5.6 million contract to supply tear gas and other equipment to Bolivia’s defense ministry. All three Americans involved in the plot have been charged with money laundering. If convicted, all five face a maximum of five years in prison.
However, Murillo’s legal woes extend beyond the United States. He is currently wanted in Bolivia for treason, following his participation “Temporary worker” The government, which came to power after the ouster of President Evo Morales in November 2019, has been described by many as a conspiracy. Incumbent Bolivian Interior Minister Eduardo del Castillo will ask the United States on Wednesday to extradite Murillo and Mendez so they can face charges at home.
Morales returned after being deported to Argentina in November following the victory of the Movement for Socialism (MAS) over his self-proclaimed president, Jeanine Anes. Anes was arrested in March for plotting to overthrow the regime, while Murillo fled the country before being detained.
During Murillo’s short-lived rule, dozens of Morales supporters were killed in bloody repression of protests against the interim government. Murillo issued an order in December 2019 to arrest Morales, who was accused of inciting the then-deported president to riot. “Terrorism. “
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