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Panama sentences ex-chief judge for corruption

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THE former president of Panama’s Supreme Court, Alejandro Moncada, has pleaded guilty to charges of illicit enrichment.

Moncada was suspended from his post in October when he came under investigation by Panama’s Congress.

He also pleaded guilty to falsifying documents and was sentenced to five years in detention.

Moncada was appointed by former President Ricardo Martinelli, who himself faces a corruption probe.

As part of the deal struck with prosecutors, Moncada will hand back two apartments worth a total of $1.7m he had bought since coming to office.

Shortly after taking up his position in 2010, Moncada had declared only a gold watch and a 2005 Toyota van. He also said at the time that he had no other income apart from his judge’s salary.

Moncada’s lawyer said his client’s health was deteriorating and he had therefore agreed to plead guilty to two out of the four charges against him


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