Former Guatemalan President denies allegations in court

Otto Perez Molina who is former President of Guatemala has denied allegations alleging that he masterminded fraud scandal

Photo by: Reuters
Photo by: Reuters

Otto Perez Molina speaks with his lawyer in court

Facing off against graft accusations, former Guatemalan President, Otto Perez Molina, 64, said on Friday that he had no involvement in taking bribes from wanted Mexican drug lord, Joaquin "El Chapo" Guzman.

Perez, who recently resigned and was sentenced to jail over the corruption scandal, said that he could have made much more money than what he is accused of stealing if he accepted Guzman's bribe.

‘’The (bribe) offer we got after his capture is perhaps 10 or 15 times the amount that you're accusing me of here, and I didn't do it because it went against my principles" he said. 

Guzman is wanted by officials after he fled from Mexico’s Altiplano prison, on July 2015. He is also on the US's most wanted listed as he allegedly led the Sinaloa cartel, an international drug trafficking organisation.

Perez has not yet been formally charged and will remain in prison until his next court hearing, which is on Tuesday.

Perez, who has denied all accusations, is facing charges such as, criminal association, taking bribes and customs fraud, prosecutors have said. He is also being investigated for money laundering.

The country is now preparing for presidential elections on Sunday, in which Perez, who took power in 2011, is not allowed to seek a re-election.

Former Vice President Alejandro Maldonado was sworn in on Thursday as president to complete Perez's term.


TRTWorld and agencies