Peru: prosecutor announces investigation of Castillo for alleged influence peddling


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Pedro Castillo, President of Peru, arrives for the 76th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York, United States, September 21, 2021. John Minchillo / Pool via REUTERS

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LIMA, Jan.4 (Reuters) – Peru’s attorney general on Monday opened a preliminary investigation against left-wing President Pedro Castillo over allegations of collusion and influence peddling in public works procurement cases.

The prosecutor announced the opening of an investigation into Castillo for alleged influence peddling, focusing on the meetings that Castillo has had with representatives of companies vying for a contract to build a bridge in a Amazon zone and another for the sale of fuel to state-owned company Petroperu, a prosecution statement said on Twitter.

He said the president “intervened inappropriately” in the bidding process.

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Castillo, whose popularity fell rapidly after taking office in late July, has dismissed the charges. He says they are orchestrated by his opponents, who want to oust him.

The administration press service was not immediately available for comment. Five of Peru’s former presidents have been investigated for corruption in recent years.

Peruvian presidents are immune from prosecution during their five-year tenure, but they are subject to investigation.

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Reporting by Marco Aquino, written by Carolina Pulice; Editing by Raju Gopalakrishnan

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