Operation Topographer: former Army Intelligence chief asks for a change in the Prosecutor’s Office

Operation Topographer: former Army Intelligence chief asks for a change in the Prosecutor’s Office
Operation Topographer: former Army Intelligence chief asks for a change in the Prosecutor’s Office

A new judicial attack was carried out by the former director of the Army Intelligence Directorate (DINE) Schafik Nazaloccurred during the last hours, after the lawyer of the person accused in the so-called “Operation Surveyor” requested the national prosecutor, Angel Valenciathe change of the Prosecutor’s Office that investigates the alleged 12 crimes of illegal interception of communications, including journalists.

The action of Nazal, who is in preventive detention like the former judge of the Court of Appeals of Santiago Juan Antonio Pobletecomes after last week also requested the Seventh Guarantee Court of Santiago to exclude the National Institute of Human Rights (INDH) as plaintiffs in the area of ​​“Operation Topographer”, the so-called “influence peddling”.

Arista that emerged from a PDI report due to the review of Poblete’s phone, where conversations between the former magistrate and ministers of the Supreme Court were revealed in which they discussed obtaining positions in the Judiciary. Conversations, made known by Ciper, that have affected the original case, in the opinion of Nazal’s lawyerthe criminal Juan Carlos Manriquezwhich have also influenced the procedural situation of the former DINE.

And the investigation of “Operation Surveyors” is in the hands of the North Central Metropolitan Prosecutor’s Office and directed by prosecutor Jaime Retamal. While the new edge, due to influence peddling, was assigned by Valencia himself a few weeks ago to the regional prosecutor of Valparaíso, Claudia Perivancich. Same persecutor to whom Nazal’s defense asks to hand over the original investigation.

Based on this situation, the criminal Manríquez sent a letter to the national prosecutor, Ángel Valencia, to change the investigation from the capital’s Prosecutor’s Office to that of Valparaíso. One of the first arguments of Nazal’s lawyer is that the complainants in the case had had access to the PDI report before the rest of the intervenerspointing to prosecutor Retamal, who in his opinion would not have the required objectivity.

Along these lines, he assures that “the complainants against Mr. Nazal had been treated privilegedly by Mr. Prosecutor Retamal”, a week before an appeal of the case was reviewed in the Court of Appeals of Santiago, when the pursuer – According to the complaint, “he sent the police report from the PDI Anti-Corruption Brigade and that gave them another advantage over the defense.”

Added to this is that in the minutes in which the INDH council decided to file a complaint on the other side, it can be read that the prosecutor Retamal “he had communicated IN RESERVE with the head of legal defense of the INDH and that he had shared the BICRIM police report … ONLY WITH THE COMPLAINANTS, reiterating the need to reach an agreement and complain about these ‘new facts’, without prejudice to also using them in the hearing on June 6, 2024 to affect Mr. Nazal’s position.”

Along with pointing out a lack of objectivity, Manríquez in his request also questions a series of connections between the interveners. In that sense, he points out that the Army official Rafael Harveycomplainant and victim in the case, has the INDH advisor as his lawyer Francisco Ugaz.

Just as he also questions that the journalist also appears as a victim and complainant in the case. Mauricio Weibel, who – he points out – is a collaborator with the Ciper media, which published the PDI report. For this reason, he reiterates that prosecutor Retamal delivered the report first to those interveners.

“From this map of relationships it is evidently clear that Prosecutor Mr. Retamal provided only the named plaintiffs with procedural input before the defenses.which was used for various purposes, except for its relevance in relation to my client’s case, leaving exposed an interested consortium lacking objectivity, which violates the legal duty established in the law and in the Code of Ethics of the Public Ministry ”says the nine-page document.

In the opinion of Nazal’s defense, “This obviously deprives him of the impartiality necessary to move forward with this investigation.”from which flows a clear confirmatory and harmful bias towards my client.

Along with that, Manríquez also points out that Ciper’s publication about the alleged influence of Supreme Court ministers in appointments “could be used as a weapon of intimidation or disqualification of that plenary session of ministers, also affecting due process and the right to a natural and impartial judge.”

Finally, the request sent by the lawyer with which he requests that the investigation be left in the hands of Perivancich, concludes that in Nazal’s opinion “These facts constitute a serious violation of the duty of objectivity, they constitute procedural disloyaltycan give rise to undue advantages and uses for other purposes extra causa and always and in any case causing damage to the fundamental right to due process of my client, and infecting the position of the Prosecutor’s Office with prejudice and bias.

In the same request, lawyer Manríquez also files a complaint for the Public Ministry to investigate the alleged crime of violation of the secrecy of the investigation after the leak of the PDI report.

When consulted about this, the lawyer Juan Carlos Manriquez, maintained that “our only interest is that objectivity is an achievable standard for all citizens, whether they are from the left or the right, whatever their race, sexual orientation or religion. In these cases, the Public Ministry is the supporter of the criminal action.”

To this he adds that it should be addressed “in this particular case it has become evident that some interveners were treated with privileges with respect to the defense. And that is unacceptable in a democratic State. We believe that the National Prosecutor has to make decisions and the courts must make decisions because this is a very serious case in which the people who are involved end up paying the price of long preventive detention for facts that are completely irrelevant to their cases. in these true maneuvers of using public information for other purposes.”

Along with sending the request to the prosecutor Valencia, Nazal’s defense also appealed to the Court of Appeals of Santiago, after the Seventh Guarantee Court of Santiago rejected the request to review the precautionary measures of the former director of the DINE, who He has been imprisoned for 16 months.

In the opinion of the defense of the general (R), “the court’s resolution transcribed above is illegal and arbitrary, because it prevents even debating the review of the precautionary measure in an oral hearing. The principle of orality governs our criminal process.”

In addition to that, it points out that the court “exceeds its powers, resolves against the law and restricts the fundamental guarantee of my client.” to review the precautionary measure of preventive detention.” For this reason, it asks the court of second instance to reverse the court’s decision and set a hearing to review the precautionary measures.

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