A Bolivian court on Friday found ex-president Jeanine Anez guilty of organizing the coup that brought her to power during the 2019 political crisis. She was sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Anez, 54, was convicted of making “unconstitutional decisions” and “neglecting her duties”. The prosecution found that Anez, then a right-wing senator, violated the norms guaranteeing a constitutional and democratic order after the presidential elections in Bolivia in 2019. Anez maintains that she is innocent.
Bolivia is divided over whether or not there was a coup when then-president Evo Morales resigned in 2019, with Anez taking his place. Morales’ departure came after mass protests against the contested elections, after which he claimed to have won a fourth consecutive term. The controversial case has further exposed the dividing lines in a deeply divided country, while fueling concerns about the Bolivian lawsuit.
– We are concerned about the way this case was handled. We are calling higher courts instances to investigate how the proceedings were conducted, said Cesar Munoz, Americas specialist for Human Rights Watch.
She was unable to attend the hearing
Anez was not allowed to attend the hearing. She has been held in prison since her arrest in March 2021 on charges of terrorism, subversion and conspiracy.
Main photo source: EPA / STRINGER