A prosecutor refused singer L-Gante defense’s request for pretrial release after he was arrested for kidnapping and threats. His defense had submitted a video allegedly showing the accuser getting into the artist’s car voluntarily. According to prosecutor Raúl Villalba, neither the footage’s location, nor its origin or timestamp could be verified.
The prosecutor in charge of Investigation Unit 9 from the General Rodríguez/Moreno Judicial District stated that Elián Ángel Valenzuela (L-Gante’s legal name) must remain in custody for kidnapping and threats aggravated by the use of a weapon against a public official and drug possession.
“We can’t ascertain the precise origin, location, date, time or any other circumstances regarding the person responsible for filming and obtaining the footage,” said the prosecutor, who requested the cumbia 420 artist to remain in a Quilmes Departmental Direction of Investigations cell, under Constitutional Safeguard Court #2 of General Rodríguez, headed by judge Gabriel Castro.
Judiciary sources told Télam the judge will resolve the defense’s request within hours.
According to L-Gante’s attorney Alejandro Cipolla the video shows plaintiff Gastón Torres, a neighbor of the singer’s family, getting into Valenzuela’s BMW truck “in the midst of an argument in which there are clearly no signs of fear by any of the parties involved.”
Valenzuela testified before prosecutor Villalba last Thursday and denied the charges but didn’t answer questions.
Torres pressed charges against the singer on May 27. According to sources quoted by Télam, a group of L-Gante’s entourage —who call themselves La Mafilia— followed Torres home that day after an altercation outside a nightclub and assaulted him and his family. Following the incident, Valennzuela went by in a white BMW, pointed a gun and forced him to get in the car. Another young woman involved in the altercation was allegedly also forced to get in the car. After some La Mafilia members were later arrested, L-Gante returned to the city officials’ car and said to the agents: “Release my friends or I’ll kill this one”, referencing the person he had in his car.
According to the claim, Torres was captive for 23 minutes, and was only released along with the woman after L-Gante received a phone call informing him that his friends had been freed.
An investigator told Télam the report has been confirmed by dozens of security cameras, cell phone geolocation and staements from police agents, witnesses and victims’ relatives.
Prosecutors then requested the arrest of Valenzuela to the Safeguards Court #2. The court agreed and issued search warrants in four locations on Tuesday, including Sector 1 of the Club Banco Provincia country club, where the musician was finally arrested.
–With information by Télam