The opposition deputy and former president of the Legislative Assembly of El Salvador Norman Quijano reiterated on Tuesday that he did not negotiate with the gangs to obtain votes in the 2014 presidential elections, in which he competed as a candidate of the Nationalist Republican Alliance (Arena).
The Attorney General’s Office (FGR) requested on Monday to withdraw the constitutional jurisdiction to Quijano to face a criminal process for alleged electoral fraud and illegal groupings.
“I never negotiated with gang members, I didn’t look for any particular benefit and I less wanted to alter the outcome of an election,” Quijano told a news conference.
One of the elements that led the Public Ministry to investigate Quijano was a video delivered by a protected witness in a trial in which more than 300 members of the Mara Salvatrucha (MS13) were convicted in 2019 and who pointed to Quijano to negotiate money in exchange for votes in the second round of elections.
“All this is centered on a video of a meeting that I had with the National Network of Pastors” and “says nothing that could be constitutive of crime,” said Quijano, also former mayor of the capital, who added that the Prosecutor’s Office did not It has allowed to see the complete material.
The Legislature must create a special commission of deputies and appoint a defender and a prosecutor from among the legislators to determine whether or not to withdraw the jurisdiction to Quijano.
The decision of said commission must be ratified by the deputies in full with at least 43 votes of the 84 legislators.
Another of the Salvadoran politicians splashed by the alleged purchases of votes from the gangs is the current mayor of San Salvador, Ernesto Muyshondt, also of Arena and to whom the witness, identified only as “Noah”, attributed the delivery of $ 69,000 in 2015.
Muyshondt, linked to pacts with gangs since 2016 for journalistic publications, says he did not give money to criminal structures and said he is willing to collaborate with the Prosecutor’s Office in the investigations.
“Noah” also stated that the leftist Farabundo Marti National Liberation Front (FMLN) party handed over more than $ 200,000 for gang members to give them their votes in 2014, when they won their second consecutive presidency.