Court overturns decision to drop Cristina ‘K money trail’ charges

The vice president will continue to be investigated over alleged involvement in an overpricing scandal

A federal court on Tuesday overturned the decision to drop charges against Vice President Cristina Kirchner for the corruption case known as the “K Money Trail” (Ruta del Dinero K). 

This means the investigation against her for money laundering accusations related to the dealings of businessman Lázaro Báez — who has been convicted — was reopened.

Judge Sebastián Casanello dropped charges against Kirchner on June 5 after Prosecutor Guillermo Marijuan announced he had not found any evidence that she was involved in Báez’s money laundering.

The Federal Appeals Chamber decided to reopen the investigation against Kirchner after Bases Republicanas — an NGO linked to PRO, former President Maurcio Macri’s party — became a plaintiff in the case and appealed for Casanello’s decision to be revoked.

Of the three judges who participated in the decision, Pablo Bertuzzi and Mariano Llorens voted in favor of the NGO’s request, asking Casanello to analyze the situation and deliver a new decision. Judge Eduardo Farah voted against reopening the case, saying that Bases Republicanas is not legally and constitutionally entitled to be a plaintiff in the case.

Báez was accused of laundering millions of euros to banks in Switzerland through offshore companies in tax havens such as Panama. The funds allegedly came from government contracts signed for a significantly higher price than the true value of the services provided, with the difference being sent abroad. 

Kirchner stood accused of favoring Báez’s construction companies for public work projects in Santa Cruz province and profiting from the money laundering process. Although the charges had been dropped in the “K Money Trail” case, she was convicted of fraudulently ensuring public works contracts go to Báez’s companies in a different case last year. Kirchner has always maintained her innocence.


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