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Peruvian lawmakers begin yet another effort to remove President Dina Boluarte from office

Peruvian lawmakers on Thursday launched a new effort to remove President Dina Bolarte from office as authorities continue various investigations into him and his aides.

A small legislative opposition party cited “moral incompetence” as the reason for the request for deletion submitted to parliament. Bolarte has already survived four attempts to shorten her term thanks to a coalition of conservative lawmakers who have rallied behind her and prevented her from gaining the votes needed to advance the bill.

Peruvian president will answer questions about ownership of luxury watches, lawyers say

Sucel Paredes told X that the opposition group filed the request because the “serious new acts” allegedly committed by Bolarte are “incompatible with continuing to lead the country.” Paredes’ announcement comes less than a week after prosecutors opened an investigation into Bolarte’s government’s decision to disband a police unit that had been investigating the activities of his inner circle, including one of his brothers. I was disappointed.

Peruvian President Dina Bolarte speaks to reporters at the end of the Amazon Summit in Belem, Brazil, August 8, 2023. (AP Photo/Eraldo Perez)

The efforts by the lawmakers are the latest step in ramping up pressure on Bolarte, who took over as president in December 2022, replacing then-President Pedro Castillo. He was removed from office by parliament and is currently in prison under investigation on charges of corruption and sedition.

Bolarte is under investigation for failing to list on mandatory asset declarations and using three luxury watches and fine jewelry that authorities estimate are worth more than $500,000. In late March, armed police broke down the front door of Bolarte’s home with a battering ram and entered the premises to search for the watch.

The raid was the first time in Peru’s history that police had forcibly entered the home of a sitting president. A few days later, lawmakers filed a fourth request for Bolarte’s removal from office.

The proposal needs to receive 52 votes for parliament to accept it and begin debate. It would take 87 votes from the 130-member unicameral parliament to remove Bolarte from office.

Bolarte, a 61-year-old lawyer, was a low-key local civil servant before joining then-President Pedro Castillo’s administration in July 2021 on a monthly salary of $8,136. Mr. Bolarte then became president on a meager salary of $4,200 a month. Soon after, she began exhibiting luxury watches.

Late last week, authorities arrested one of Mr. Bolarte’s brothers and his lawyer in connection with an investigation into influence trafficking. The document accuses the president’s brother, Nicanor Bolarte, of trying to appoint government officials in exchange for money and agreements to collect signatures to register political parties.

Meanwhile, authorities have accused lawyer Mateo Castañeda of obstructing the investigation into Nicanor Bolarte by providing certain favors to members of a disbanded police force to focus on tax investigations.

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The judge granted the prosecution’s request that both men be quarantined for 10 days. This means that neither man can contact anyone. This is a measure in which authorities usually take legal action in cases deemed to be very serious.

Nicanor Bolarte said he was “innocent” because he left his home in handcuffs after his arrest last week, but Castaneda also said in a handwritten letter his law firm shared on social media. denied any wrongdoing.

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