An Argentine tourist must remain in Peru while he is being investigated for allegedly causing damage to the ruins of Machu Picchu, while five others, of various nationalities, will be expelled from the country after irregularly entering the famous archaeological site of southern Peru.
The six travelers, of which three are Argentines, one Brazilian, one French and one Chilean, illegally entered the citadel on the night of last Saturday and were arrested by park rangers and police in the early hours of Sunday, after which they were led to the police station of the Machu Picchu district.
At the time of their arrest they were in the area of the viewpoint of the Temple of the Sun, where the authorities accused them of having caused the fall of a stone from one of the pre-Hispanic walls and of making their needs in the place.
In this regard, the National Police reported Tuesday that the investigations allowed to determine that the Argentine Nahuel Gómez, 28, must remain in the Machu Picchu district while being investigated by the Local Court of Justice and Preparatory Investigation.
“The Argentine citizen has already agreed to be the direct author of the attack, so he remains detained in Machu Picchu. The authorities of the Public Ministry and Judicial Branch will already see the penalty imposed on him,” said the police chief of Cusco, Víctor Patiño, Daily Mail.
While Gomez will be investigated for the alleged commission of the crime of destruction of the assets of the Peruvian pre-Hispanic heritage, the authorities also imposed fines and initiated the procedures for the expulsion from the country of the other detainees, a process that can be completed on Wednesday.
THE DAMAGES IN MACHU PICCHU
The Deconcentrated Directorate of Culture of Cusco denounced the six tourists on Monday to the Police and the Prosecutor’s Office of the Machu Picchu district for the illegal entry and alleged attack on Peruvian pre-Hispanic cultural heritage.
The state agency said that in the area of the Temple of the Sun there was “the fracture of a lithic element that came off a wall falling from a height of approximately 6 meters causing a cleft in the floor, fecal matter was also found.”
In that sense, the head of the National Archaeological Park of Machu Picchu, José Bastante, demanded that the investigations be expedited to determine the responsibilities and that the sanctions indicated by the law be applied.
RESPECT FOR HERITAGE
In Peru, severe sanctions are applied to those who attempt against the cultural and historical heritage of the country, which, in the case of pre-Hispanic goods, comprise sentences of 3 to 8 years in prison.
For this reason, the Deconcentrated Directorate of Culture of Cusco asked visitors to respect and protect the national heritage and warned that, if such an event occurs, they will be subjected to the administrative and legal actions of the country.
Machu Picchu is the main tourist destination of Peru and every day it is visited by thousands of travelers, who mostly access the place by train from the city of Cusco, located 1,165 kilometers southeast of Lima.