Panama’s supreme court orders former president detained in US
PANAMA CITY, Panama -- The Supreme Court of Justice of Panama, in a joint order, has directed that the country's former president, Ricardo Martinelli, be detained in the United States and held without bond, pending his extradition to Panama.
Martinelli has a dozen cases pending against him in Panama City, the most prominent being his illegal electronic surveillance program, which spied upon 150 of Panama's most powerful leaders, wealthy businessmen, and their wives, which most Panamanians found extremely distasteful, and regard as an espionage operation, directed against the people of Panama
Martinelli, who has been living openly in Miami of late, reportedly expressed anger at the Supreme Court action; his attorneys have been attempting to interpose every technical legal roadblock possible, in a futile effort to delay the cases, including Martinelli's bogus appointment to the Central American Parliament, and denying that he has received proper notice of the proceedings.
Martinelli is rumoured to be a cooperating individual for a US law enforcement agency and whether Panamanian pressure to extradite a corrupt leader trump his alleged deal with the United States to face justice in his native Panama remains an open question.
By Kenneth Rijock
Kenneth Rijock is a banking lawyer turned-career money launderer (10 years), turned-compliance officer specialising in enhanced due diligence, and a financial crime consultant who publishes a Financial Crime Blog. The Laundry Man, his autobiography, was published in the UK on 5 July 2012.