Sally López reaches an agreement with the federal prosecutor’s office

More than seven months after a new trial will be ordered against him, the defense of the former director of the Labor Development Administration (ADL), Sally lopez, informed the United States District Court in San Juan that it reached an agreement with the federal prosecutor’s office.

Last April, a panel of the Court of Appeals for the First Circuit in Boston had vacated the guilty verdict that a jury issued for his alleged role in the scheme of Anaudi Hernandez Perez to obtain, through bribes and influence, government contracts during the administration of former Governor Alejandro García Padilla.

A motion by Linda Backiel, López’s attorney, announced to federal judge Pedro Delgado on November 19 that “the parties have reached an agreement in accordance with Rule 11 (c) (1) (C) on the appropriate provision ”.

Although the motion does not indicate verbatim that López will plead guilty, the rule invoked is the one that defines the process for a defendant to plead guilty in agreement with the Public Ministry.

It establishes that if the defendant makes an allegation of guilt for “the imputed offense or a minor or related offense, the agreement may specify that a prosecutor will agree” that “a sentence or range of sentence is the appropriate disposition of the case,” among other options.

With this provision, “such recommendation or request binds the court once the court accepts the plea agreement.”

In her motion, López’s lawyer indicated that “the corresponding argument will be presented once the court has set a date.”

Subsequently, Judge Delgado scheduled a change hearing to plead guilt and sentence for next December 21.

The hearing will take place virtually, since in López’s motion he reported that, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, he renounced his right to be present in a courtroom.

After Hernández Pérez pleaded guilty in 2016, the federal prosecutor’s office brought López to trial, as well as the former vice president of the Aqueducts and Sewers Authority (AAA), Ivonne Falcón Nieves and her sister, Marielis Falcón Nieves, and al former special assistant to the House of Representatives, Glenn Rivera Pizarro.

[Este video de archivo repasa los rostros implicados en el millonario esquema]:

López, the sisters Falcón Nieves and Rivera were found guilty on October 7, 2016 of conspiring with Hernández Pérez, a fundraiser for the Popular Democratic Party (PPD), in a scheme of corruption, sale of influence and bribes to benefit Hérnandez Pérez in the awarding of central government contracts.

The former director of the ADL was sentenced on August 31, 2017. Ivonne Falcón Nieves was sentenced to eight years in prison, and her sister, to three years in prison. Both are in the process of appeals. Later, López was released on bail on December 5, 2020, through another Appellate decision in Boston, in which the appeal was elucidated, but anticipated that a new trial could be ordered.

López’s defense argued that the evidence presented against Rivera Pizarro during the trial caused the jury to be prejudiced against him.

Then, in April of this year, the new trial was ordered by a Boston appellate panel, after finding that insufficient evidence was presented to support the guilty verdict, in addition to understanding that it should have been tried in a separate process from the other defendants. .

Until the last motion of the defense, a date had not been set for the new trial.

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