The federal judge of Mendoza and with electoral jurisdiction in that province Walter Bento presented a tough defense in the Council of the Magistracy within the framework of the file that was opened in the body for poor performance of its functions. In a letter with a strong political tone, the magistrate denounced “persecutions” of judges, prosecutors and politicians and a “smear” campaign supposedly armed by the media.
The writing, to which he agreed Clarion, was part of his defense before the Magistrature that seeks to suspend him after federal judge Eduardo Puigdéngolas tried him for the crimes of money laundering, bribery, illicit enrichment and accused him of being the head of an illicit association that was dedicated to removing prisoners in exchange for money.
“They are using the Bonadio method in the notebooks cause”, argued Bento in his 205-page brief in an argument very similar to those used by Kirchnerism to defend itself against the cases against it.
According to Bento, “the Bonadio method” would consist in getting “confessions” under pressure. Bento, who until now has not been able to justify his patrimony, explained this in his letter. “The Prosecutor signed collaboration agreements with two detained lawyers (accused of being part of the illicit association), who said absolutely anything to get me involved and regain their freedom following the Bonadio method in notebooks cause, including having participated in a meeting of the “gang” in which he would have said to one of them ‘welcome to the group,’ “said Bento, adding:” The judge approved the agreements and granted them their freedom without corroborating anything at all. ”
Mendoza federal judge Walter Bento was prosecuted for laundering and illicit enrichment.
The prosecutor in charge of the file against him is Dante Vega and he was the one who, together with Judge Puigdéngolas, ordered the inhibition and seizure of the magistrate’s assets, which include cars and various luxury properties.
Bento’s defense has a strong political tone and, although he does not use the term, it floats in the writing. the concept of lawfare, which Kirchner leaders used so much – including Vice President Cristina Kirchner – to defend themselves from the investigations and prosecutions against them.
The judge also targets the media those he accuses of carrying out smear campaigns and describes point by point how the plan against him would have been. “A highly planned judicial and media maneuver was implemented that included: a press operation from November 2020 to the present through related means, the construction of a false accusation, the public scandal including raids in the court, my family home, my arrest – and the influence on public opinion through the press, “says the judge.
It even questions the Council of the Magistracy itself, which must evaluate its performance. “It is clear from public information that an attempt was made to influence this Council and the National Electoral Chamber to adopt a swift resolution suspending me from the exercise of the magistracy.
The press, urged by the political agents who want my displacement, directly and openly pressure this Commission, “says the judge.
Pablo Tonelli greets Alberto Lugones. Ahead, Diego Molea and Graciela Camaño. They are part of the Magisterial Council that evaluates Bento. Photo Federico López Claro.
The Magistracy opened the case for poor performance against Bento last June. After a draw, he was in charge of the investigation in the Discipline and Accusation Commission the opposition councilor and PRO deputy Pablo Tonelli.
Tonelli seeks to speed up the file that could end with the displacement of the judge. The counselor of the PRO considers that the accusations against the magistrate are serious enough to delay the process.
But so far the case is moving slowly. After Bento’s letter, which presented it ten days ago, Tonelli asked in writing the president of the Disciplinary Commission, the official senator María Inés Pilatti Vergara, to summon a meeting for this Thursday.
There he sought to evaluate a series of evidence measures including an expert opinion requested by Bento. But in the ruling party they are in no hurry to move forward with the case. Lowly, they argue that the elections should be missed to evaluate their performance. They consider that in the middle of the elections it is not prudent to remove an electoral judge. Although he is accused of corruption.