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Between 2009 and 2014, Luis Martinelli and his brother were allegedly involved in money laundering.
The Guatemalan Public Prosecutor's Office confirmed the extradition of Luis Enrique Martinelli to the United States, where the son of Panama's former President Ricardo Martinelli (2009-2014) will face money laundering charges.
Since July 2020, he and his brother have been held captive in Guatemala following a request by the U.S. justice system due to their alleged implication in the Odebrecht bribes case in Panama.
The Martinelli brothers are presumed to have managed secret bank accounts of shell companies in foreign jurisdictions during their father's mandate.
To sustain the extradition request, a New York district court handed over documents containing evidence, witness statements, and bank records against the Martinellis.
#Panama | A Spanish organization led by former Judge Baltasar Garzon has involved Panamanian government officials, led by Martinelli, for allegedly collecting $82.7 million illegally through front companies and an international circuit of bank accounts.https://t.co/vnZbscuvTW
On July 6, 2020, they were arrested at Guatemala City's international airport as they attempted to board a private humanitarian flight to Panama.
Days after the arrest, the Central American Parliament ruled out declaring them as Panamanian alternate lawmakers after suspicions that they intended to invoke parliamentary immunity to avoid extradition.
Their father was extradited from the U.S. in 2018 to face charges for an illegal wiretapping case. After his release, he has registered a new political party and expressed his intention to run again for the presidential post in 2024.
#Guatemala | The tragedy shocked public opinion on January 22, when residents of the border area with the US alerted Mexican authorities about two burned vehicles with 19 bodies inside, including 16 Guatemalans. pic.twitter.com/IBdEavWS0l