Public prosecutors and the police are intensifying the investigation into the case of phantom objects with further searches, document collections and allegations against the alleged perpetrators. Yesterday, the former mayor Angélica Sosa went into the investigation after her informative statement at the Ministry of Public Affairs from the witness.
“It was decided to expand the lawsuit against Ms. (Angélica) Sosa. Then it must be made clear that she is no longer a witness, she is already a defendant in the present proceedings, ”confirmed prosecutor Marcela Terceros.
Sosa, along with former Mayor Percy Fernández and 27 other former Santa Cruz Mayor officials, has an immigration warning that means he cannot leave the country.
Third parties recalled that after a change in their legal position, it was decided to apply for the immigration warning against them. Director General for Migration, Katherine Calderón, reported that a similar request had been received for Santa Cruz Mayor Percy Fernández.
Sosa finished his testimony that afternoon and avoided testifying to the media. During her appearance she was accompanied by her lawyer Xerxes Justiniano, who had ruled out any responsibility for the case days ago.
In addition to Sosa and Fernández, the other requests for immigration warnings also include the brothers Antonio and Guillermo Parada and Marisabel Parada Vaca de Villena, who also switched from witnesses to the preliminary investigation. “We have around 60 to 70 people on our files to testify as witnesses,” added Terrazas.
Yesterday, the Prosecutor and Police Commission investigating the phantom item confiscated documents from the offices of the City Administration’s Human Resources Department in Quinta Municipal for almost two hours. The researchers interviewed officials who do their work in that department.
At the end of the operation, Major Saúl Salazar, a member of the Special Fight Against Crime (Felcc) anti-corruption group, pointed out that the documents withheld “suggest that the incident (the phantom objects) did indeed take place”.
In any case, he asked for caution while the authorities analyzed the requested material and postponed further details for a later press conference.
A complaint of economic violence in the family expanded the lawsuit against Antonio Parada Vaca, former HR director, and others.
One of the witnesses who appeared at the Ministry of Public Affairs to testify about the case revealed that Julio Herbas, a former township official, was a confidante of Antonio Parada, former head of human resources for the Santa Cruz Mayor’s Office, and now of the police are wanted police.
The man gained people’s trust, offered them a job and asked for their documents since 2014, but the offer never came. One cooperative even set up a registry to open an account into which they were supposed to be depositing the money.
“Julio Herbas is the person who contacted us in a group of friends, he uses the trust and offers us this job to several people,” said the witness El Deber.
He said he did not find out until 2015 that he was a civil servant and tried to file a complaint, but Antonio Parada and Herbas silenced him. They offered him 300 bolivianos a month without having to report for work. The obligation was: “Never say anything”.
Mesa sees deterioration in community management
Civic Community (CC) chairman Carlos Mesa assured yesterday that the case of the phantom objects shows the humiliation of previous administrations in the Santa Cruz mayor’s office, which included the Socialism Movement (MAS).
“The scandal surrounding ghost objects shows not only the lack of control and prevention, but also the degradation of the previous local government in Santa Cruz, in which the MAS was also involved,” Mesa wrote on Twitter.
The case came uncovered after Valeria Rodríguez denounced her ex-husband Antonio Parada, a former Santa Cruz Mayor’s staff official, of making irregular allegations in order to get a job in the Santa Cruz community.
“Corruption is uncontrollable; There is an urgent need to redefine norms and institutions to combat them, “added the CC chief in the tweet.
Jerjes Justiniano, lawyer for the former mayor of Santa Cruz, Angélica Sosa, denied that Mayor Jhonny Fernández was confusing the population by arguing that the 800 articles are related to the case of irregular contracts.
The lawyer emphasized that there are two very different things, so that the exedile does not have to answer in this case. “Irregular contracts have a different quality, they have a different style, which has not been reported on phantom,” he said.