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ARGENTINA | 04-09-2018 09:46

Ex Kirchner financier seeks to 'broaden' plea bargain

The financier is reported to have offered to provide information about the Kirchner couple's personal financial activity.

Ernesto Clarens, the former financier of the Kirchner presidential couple, is seeking to broaden his plea bargain with the courts, after his initial deal was revoked and his properties raided.

Clarens is under investigation in the so-called "notebooks" affair, an alleged graft ring in which former officials of the Néstor and Cristina Kirchner presidencies took kick-backs from construction sector bosses in exchange for public works contracts and other benefits.

If Clarens secures Judge Claudio Bonadio's approval for the new plea bargain, his "broadened" testimony could be particularly damaging to Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, given what he is believed to know about hers and Néstor Kirchner's private financial activity.

PLEA DEAL REVOKED

Clarens is currently the head of Inverness, a financial consultancy firm whose offices were raided last Wednesday on Bonadio's order.

The financier voluntarily appeared in court on Monday to request to "modify and expand" his plea bargain after Federal Prosecutor Carlos Stornelli revoked his previous deal on Friday.

In statements made to the courts, Clarens has admitted to exchanging pesos - supposedly originating from bribes paid by construction sector bosses to Kirchner officials - into dollars.

On Friday, Stornelli stripped Clarens of his plea bargain and ordered his arrest, which never came to pass since he appeared voluntarily in court to negotiate a way out.

The financier is believed to have offered to provide information about the Kirchner couple's personal finances, according to news portal Infobae.

-TIMES/PERFIL

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