The Peruvian Congress suspended legislator Kenji Fujimori and his allies Bienvenido Ramirez and Guillermo Bocangel Wednesday with the trio expected to face an investigation into allegations that they participated in bribery and influence trafficking.
“We have been victims of a parliamentary dictatorship. We have been victims of Fuerza Popular’s overwhelming majority,” Fujimori said in Congress.
Fuerza Popular is led by Kenji’s sister, Keiko, a former presidential candidate.
The suspension was approved by 58 lawmakers and will last throughout the criminal process against the three legislators.
The lawmakers are accused of attempting to buy the vote of Fuerza Popular legislator Moises Mamani to prevent impeachment proceedings against former Peruvian president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski for links with Brazilian construction company Odebrecht.
Kuczynski, who ultimately resigned due to the corruption scandal, had survived a previous impeachment attempt thanks to the last-minute abstention of Kenji Fujimori and nine other Fujimorista legislators who broke party lines.
A few days later Kuczynski issued a controversial pardon in favor of former dictator Alberto Fujimori, who was serving a 25-year sentence for crimes against humanity.
Alberto Quintanilla of Nuevo Peru rejected the measure, saying “using their majority, Fujimorismo has once again used this parliament in an arbitrary and arrogant way, violating the constitution.”
According to a 2003 ruling by Peru’s constitutional court, legislators can’t be suspended if there is no sentence against them.