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Peru seeks Swiss help in Montesinos investigation

Montesinos speaking with military officers in Peru in June, before his disgrace

(Keystone)

Peru has asked the Swiss justice authorities for legal assistance in connection with investigations into the former Peruvian intelligence head, Vladimiro Montesinos.

The Justice Ministry said Peru's request related to two different cases against Montesinos, who was the power-broker behind the deposed president, Alberto Fujimori.

Ministry spokesman Folco Galli said the first request was made on December 5 in connection with allegations of illegal drug smuggling and money laundering. The second request came three weeks later and related to unjust enrichment, Galli said.

In both cases the Peruvian authorities had asked Switzerland to release bank documents and other papers relating to accounts held by Montesinos in Switzerland.

Zurich justice officials have frozen at least nine accounts linked to Montesinos, containing a total of around $70 million (SFr113 million). They believe the money could have derived from arms deals.

Montesinos fled Peru last September amid a bribery scandal and is now in hiding.

swissinfo with agencies


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