As citizens challenge the pardon, the Attorney General’s Anti-Corruption Office is scrutinizing its legality.
Peruvians are organizing nationwide mobilizations to reject the “humanitarian” pardon granted to former dictator and convicted criminal Alberto Fujimori by President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, known as PPK. The largest protest is scheduled to begin Thursday at 6 p.m. in Lima’s Plaza San Martin.
Since PPK announced his decision on Dec. 24, more than 5,000 Peruvians have taken to the streets of Lima to protest against impunity. Many carried pictures of family members murdered or disappeared during Fujimori’s war against insurgent groups Shining Path and the Tupac Amaru Revolutionary Movement.
PPK’s pardon came just after Congress narrowly voted to not impeach the president for allegedly receiving nearly US$800,000 in kickbacks from the Brazilian construction company Odebrecht. Impeachment failed after Fujimori’s son, Kenji, and 10 other “Fujimorista” legislators abstained from the vote, a move seen by many as a political maneuver to gain Fujimori’s pardon.
Protests against PPK’s pardon have reached an international level. In Madrid, a picket dubbed “Pardon is insult” will take place in front of Peru’s General Consulate.
Human rights organizations and lawyers have vowed to challenge the legality of PPK’s controversial pardon that triggered massive protests around the country. Francisco Soberon, director of the Pro-Human Rights Association, asserts that “the pardon does not conform with the Inter-American Human Rights Court ruling.”
Now, the Attorney General’s Anti-Corruption Office will also look into the legality of the presidential pardon. The office has requested certified copies of the resolution that gave way to Fujimori’s liberty to look for possible irregularities.
“If the procedure holds any illegal act that could turn the pardon into an arbitrary decision, then we would have to oppose its application,” said a source from the Council for the Legal Defense of the State.
In 2009, Fujimori was sentenced to 25 years in prison for crimes against humanity.