AP

Anti-corruption Guatemalan judge resigns and flees to the US

Mar 20, 2022, 11:25 PM | Updated: Mar 21, 2022, 12:01 pm

GUATEMALA CITY (AP) — A Guatemalan judge considered key in fighting corruption announced her resignation on Monday and that she has decided to leave the Central American country.

Judge Erika Aifán has presided over corruption cases against businessmen, officials, judges and lawmakers, and she was recently overseeing an investigation about alleged irregularities during current President Alejandro Giammattei’s campaign. She has been pursued by her own colleagues and she faces at least 20 legal complaints for allegedly overstepping, something she denies.

“They left me no other option,” she said to The Associated Press on a phone conversation from Washington, where she fled.

Aifán is the latest case of other Guatemalan judges and prosecutors who have left the country in recent months after the government had started investigations or even looking to arrest those who oversee corruption cases.

Aifán said she had felt particular pressure from Guatemalan Attorney General Consuelo Porras, whose visa was canceled by the U.S. government because of corruption concerns.

“She has manipulated the Prosecutor’s office, prosecuting those of us who have worked to fight against impunity and corruption,” Aifán said.

One of Aifán’s most recent cases was an investigation about alleged illegal funding to Giammattei’s presidential campaign in 2019. The President has denied any wrongdoing.

The U.N. and the U.S. government had criticized and condemned in the past what they have considered “harassment” of the judge.

In July 2021, the U.S. government announced the suspension of its cooperation with Guatemala’s Attorney General’s Office in response to the firing of its then top anti-corruption prosecutor.

Copyright © The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

AP

jerry west...

Tim Reynolds, The Associated Press

Jerry West, a 3-time Hall of Fame selection and the NBA logo, dies at 86

Jerry West, a three-time Basketball Hall of Fame inductee whose silhouette is considered to be the basis of the NBA logo, died Wednesday morning.

8 hours ago

Photo: Construction vehicles are parked outside of the Station U & O building on Tuesday, June 11, ...

Haleluya Hadero, The Associated Press

Amazon adds $1.4B to affordable housing fund for regions where it has corporate offices

Amazon is adding $1.4B to a fund for building more affordable housing in regions where the company has major corporate offices.

21 hours ago

hunter biden...

Randall Chase and the Associated Press

Hunter Biden convicted of all 3 felony charges in federal gun trial

Hunter Biden has been convicted of all three felony charges related to the purchase of a revolver in 2018, but no sentencing date was set.

1 day ago

Photo: A Bremerton man who made 20 "swatting" calls around the U.S. and in Canada, prompting real e...

Associated Press

Bremerton man sentenced for 20 ‘swatting’ calls of false threats in US, Canada

A Bremerton man who made 20 "swatting" calls around the U.S. and in Canada, prompting real emergency responses, has been sentenced.

2 days ago

Image: U.S. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin, left, speaks with Ukraine's President Volodymyr Zele...

Associated Press

Ukraine uses US weapons to strike inside Russia, a Western official tells AP

Ukraine has used U.S weapons to strike inside Russia in recent days, according to a Western official familiar with the matter told the AP.

7 days ago

boeing nasa...

Marcia Dunn, The Associated Press

Boeing launches NASA astronauts for the first time after years of delays

Boeing launched astronauts for the first time Wednesday, belatedly joining SpaceX as a second taxi service for NASA.

7 days ago

Anti-corruption Guatemalan judge resigns and flees to the US