Gomez conviction another nail in Martinelli’s coffin

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Ana Matilde Gomez entering the court Wednesday morning

The conviction of Ana Matilde Gomez, attorney general of Panama and prosecuted by Martinelli's yes-men because she did what she was hired for and tapped the phone of a victim (at the victim's request) of extortion by a corrupt prosecutor, is yet another act of political self-immolation by Martinelli and his clique of mobsters.

Sure, in theory the Supreme Court is independent, but in reality it was stacked by Martinelli with political and business loyalists who were owed favors, while some of them have questionable histories in money laundering, drugs - and arms trafficking and one magistrate, Winston Spadafora, can't even enter the United States anymore because his corrupt dealings had reached levels far off the Richter scale.

This bunch of thugs - once described as "a judicial madhouse" by the head of the bar association - has with this reckless conviction after a day-long show trial opened the door for Gomez to bring the case before the Inter American Court, which will most likely rule in her favor and condemn the Panamanian state for violations of due process, constitutional rights and what have you.

Gomez was convicted to 6 months in prison, which was then converted to a $4,000 fine. She has already announced that she won't pay the fine, saying that she "won't pay to delinquents". Technically that would mean that she has to be thrown in jail, but that would be a disgrace even the otherwise brain-dead Martinelli mafiosi will want to avoid.

International media earlier reported that Martinelli had Gomez suspended because he wanted to stall an investigation into his money laundering activities for Mexican and Colombian drug cartels.

Also today, news broke that the Panamanian bar association is demanding the suspension of Procurador de la Administración, Oscar Ceville, for....... illegal wiretapping and hacking the computers of his employees, for political purposes. Ironically, Ceville's office was in charge of the prosecution of Ana Matilde Gomez.

Martinelli, meanwhile, has lost most political support he'd need to have a free trade agreement with the US ratified and secure financing for his ambitious plans. Not only are the left and progressive movements protesting his authoritarian rule and lack of respect for human rights, the environment and even human life, but the ultra-conservative CATO institute is voicing publicly the sentiment among conservatives in the US that Martinelli "blew it". In May 2009, the influential institute called Martinelli's election victory an "encouraging shot at progress". Just over a year later, the institute is "Disappointed in Panama" and notes:

Ricardo Martinelli's May 2009 election as president of Panama seemed to bode well for the country's development prospects. During his campaign, he promised to implement bold market-oriented reforms, such as a flat tax (which would have been the first of its kind in the Americas), freer trade, an end to some government subsidies, and less bureaucratic red tape. Unfortunately, not only have those promises gone unfulfilled, but Martinelli's presidency has been marked by interventionist economic measures, cronyism, the erosion of democratic checks and balances, and even harassment of independent media.

Today's Supreme Court decision only confirms the above.

UPDATE: And what does Martinelli himself has to say? He asks us to "turn the page" on the Gomez affair and denies having any involvement with the trial. The first won't happen, because Gomez already announced that her "vindication will be proportional to the sentence" (she'll bring the case before the international courts) and the second nobody with half a brain believes.

19 thoughts on “Gomez conviction another nail in Martinelli’s coffin

    • Part of the sentence is that she can’t hold public office for five years – obviously to prevent her from running for anything. But I think – or at least hope – that the Inter American court will blow that out of the water.

  1. How long will that process last though? With all these massive fuck ups I cannot believe that noone has emerged to take advantage of it – what a waste – we suffer for nothing. I mean Navarro is almost starting to look good!

  2. It may take years. Unless they decide it’s urgent – I don’t know exactly how that works.

    But it would be a tour de force anyway to get her elected. It would need to be a coalition of progressives, it would need a rejuvenated PRD that has finally dealt with its unsavory past, and Gomez is a protégé of the Motta family which doesn’t make things easier either.

  3. Slim pickings does not even begin to describe the situation. That the left , or even the center for god’sake ,cannot get organized under these circumstances mean we deserve the likes of Martinelli et al. Someone needs to channel Endara and we already discarded Ana Mae – who is left? Bernal cant even make it as mayor against the likes of Bosco the clown….. sad sad sad. 4 years left and I am already depressed. Pass the prozac will you? or have they manufactured something better? What is the saying? Ignorance is bliss? YEP – – perhaps we should get back to Wild Bill and Frou Frou – at least it has entertainment value.

    • That’s why I continue to hammer at these groups and activists and what have you. They HAVE to come up with an alternative, otherwise it’s not just 4 more years, but a decade of this shit at least.

  4. Country is a circus, vendetta is the Law.
    Forces are being unleashed which they cannot control.
    May be in 5 years – or less – they will be victims of their own poison.

  5. Ana Matilde was a lackey from Martin Torrijos, and the expresident was the one who put the damocles sword on her to tight her leash because… Matilde was a political puppet from the begging, and now she claim the new puppetter was bad…how funny Diethylene glycol case got zero big fish caught and more than 400 corruption cases send to her get on limbo. And those judges she illegally fired and we need to repay them..dont worry about her like another fired ex-procurador she will get fine defending drug dealers and corrupts…wait and see

    • @Alexander: Like each and every other Martinelli mafia supporter, you don’t give ONE valid legal argument why Gomez should be convicted. In fact, all the reasons you give here for justifying her conviction and dismissal confirm that the case is indeed a political one, and has nothing to do with justice. She wasn’t on trial because of fired judges. She wasn’t on trial for big fish (which is an idiotic argument anyway, because FACT is that it has been the same supreme court that has blocked every corruption case time and time again, not Gomez, as the handling of the Saez case, a fiscal running an extortion ring, clearly proves as well). It is people like you, with their simian third world ideas of a state of law, that are turning Panama into an even bigger international outcast than it already was.

  6. I have been following the whole saga, but yesterday I was shocked at the verdict and disappointed to know that the notion of the separation of powers is not alive and well in Panama, a place where I went to high school in the 80’s. Anyway, I admire Mrs Gomez for her stoicism and strength throughout what must have been an ordeal for her and what will amount to a blemish on Panama’s name in the international fora at least.

  7. I am very surprised that Martinelli drove this denuncia through the courts at lightening speed. If he had any sense he would have dragged it out. This way he would have maintained pressure financially and emotionally on Ana Matilda for years without committing himself to a complete travesty of justice. Now he has dealt his weak hand and made a complete mockery of an already disgusting legal system.

    Meanwhile Ms Gomez is a type of martyr and will not be stopped for $4000. If she goes to jail it will give here more power in the long run, but it will be ugly. It seems like a total loss for Sufre99.

    Martinelli has been such a bumbling fool in his presidency that one must come to the conclusion that he is nothing but a receipt writer for the drug mobs.

    No one of this stupidity could build a large business ,even in Panama’s rigged economy.

  8. @Faustino – I would not assume Martinelly cannot run a business, although he obviously cannot run a country. I think this is more the case of an ego centric maniac used to do things the way he want when he wants. The way he defiantly declared he would go to South Africa as one of his province was a battle zone; how he declared he would not change the law; how he disregarded all due process to both pass the law AND remove Ana Matilda etc etc etc . He is not prone to listen to advice unless it is from one of his core group. And obviously does not give a damn about public opinion. But with all this I was reading in the Prensa that CD has added 100K more members in the recent past – they now have either more or as many members as the Panamenistas. So some people must see him as someone “who get things done”. What gives (aside from literally give)?

  9. @FromBocas: Why do people sign up with CD? Same game as always, because if you want a government job that’s what’s required. If you’re a dentist assistant and apply for a job at the Seguro Social, you have to be a party member. This is an age-old practice that Martinelli promised to end, but it’s alive as never before.

  10. ok then, it is not so bad – I was afraid it was actual “fans” – if they only switch to get a job, it is easier to understand – it does not mean they have to vote party line when the time comes.

  11. I was talking to a PRD Diputado a few weeks ago who claims he turned down the $500K Martinelli was offering for PRD members to jump ship. He claims that it will not be worth it as he doesn’t want to go down with the ship. However I jokingly asked him if he would switch for $1 million, he said yes. Now this fella is a Panamanian politician, so he is not exactly the pinnacle of truthfulness and I didn’t know exactly how to take it. He claims also that Martinelli is using a “plata o plombo” approach to the PRD, gifts and threats. It would not surprise me if one day it is discovered that Martinelli has used public funds to bribe PRD members to become turncoats.


    I agree that many excellent businessmen are dominant megalomaniacs but not many make consistently bad strategic errors like Sufre99 does. I view his entire empire in a different light after the laundering revelations.

    I have known some complete bobos in Panama and Costa Rica who appear to have built grand business empires but are really just receipt printers for the recreational pharmaceutical manufacturers.

  12. Geez, what is going on in Panamá? I’m still stunned by the Bocas del Toro strike and how violently it was put down but it seems that we have a dictator in the making in Ricardo Martinelli.

    Love the site btw.

  13. Dear editor, i hope you delete your own reply to my post, or my post if my words trouble you to much… I am not a monkey not a mafia, not a cheerleader for Ana, hope you delete them as easy as you delete my 4 answer to your post were i explain the legally terms of wiretap on all the developed democracies none ruled by simians you can check them, if you choose to delete this i will take legal action on because every individual got rights to reply specially under this cheap use of words…blocking those who dont agree with you is not polite, not good in any democracy ….

    COMMENT FROM THE EDITOR: I’m only letting this comment through so that everybody can see what an idiot you are. If you want to take legal action because I won’t let you spout your inane drivel here without even using your full name, go ahead, and good luck making an ass of yourself. Bye.

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