The investigation into the failed shooting attack against Vice-President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner continued Friday under the instructions of Judge María Eugenia Capuchetti and prosecutor Carlos Rívolo.
With the suspected attacker in custody, authorities raided the accused’s home in the outskirts of Buenos Aires, finding on his property 100 rounds of ammunition. Judge Capuchetti also made the trip from the Comodoro Py federal courthouse to the wealthy City neighbourhood of Recoleta, where Fernández de Kirchner remained at her apartment, to collect initial testimony.
The investigation is focusing on the prime suspect, identified as Fernando André Sabag Montiel, a 35-year-old Brazilian national who has been living in Argentina since 1993.
Sabag Montiel was born in São Paulo, Brazil, to an Argentine mother and a Chilean father who reportedly was deported in 2021, according to Perfil.
While police drew up an initial profile of the alleged attacker based on his online presence, paying close attention to his social media accounts, authorities raided a property in the municipality of San Martín, to the west of the City of Buenos Aires.
Sabag Montiel has rented a small room in a shared property for the past eight months. During the raid, police discovered two boxes of ammunition containing 50 bullets each (Magtech 9 millimetre), as well as a laptop, debit cards, and personal documentation.
The room was extremely messy and dirty, according to reports, with a stench emanating from the toilet. Dirty kitchenware, and clothes were found all over the floor.
Investigators also found female lingerie, sex toys and a faux leather whip along with several bags of potatoes, La Nación reported.
Previously police had searched a property in Villa del Parque, a neighbourhood in the City, which Sabag Montiel was believed to have rented. The alleged perpetrator also apparently owned three vehicles that were used for private trips. His landlords described him as “educated” and “respectful.”
On his Instagram and Facebook profiles, Sabag Montiel had posted himself dressed in flashy clothes in a series of selfies, as well as a number of photographs with second and third-tier celebrities. He followed several fringe accounts including “Satanic Communism,” “Occult Sciences and Hermeneutics,” and a pseudo-Masonic “Logia Simbólica Centauro 9-96.” On one of his elbows he has a large “Black Sun Tattoo,” a design sometimes associated with neo-Nazi groups.
There was little political content on his social media profiles with the exception of a recent appearance on Crónica TV, in which he and his girlfriend had criticised people who received social plans and welfare payments from the government, as well as Economy Minister Sergio Massa, outspoken liberal economist Javier Miliei and Fernández de Kirchner.
Judge Capuchetti and Prosecutor Rívolo made their way to the vice-president’s apartment on Friday in Recoleta in order to take down testimony.
After leaving the Comodoro Py federal courthouse, the duo arrived at the intersection of Juncal and Uruguay streets, made their way through the crowd and quickly entered the building.
According to the Infobae news portal, the investigators are keeping every hypothesis on the table, and will also look into the potential negligence of Fernández de Kirchner’s personal security detail.
Whether Sabag Montiel is a ‘lone wolf’ attacker or part of a coordinated action has not been determined.The investigation will remain sealed for the time being, though information is expected to leak out given the high-profile nature of the probe.