The meetings could be held in the Executive Tower (“Torre Ejecutiva”), the headquarters of the executive, in Montevideo. Alejandro Artesiano, the head of the presidential guard, had an office there on the fourth floor. The holder of this strategic position, closest to the security of the president, Luis Lacalle Pou (center right), would have participated, with accomplices, in the creation of false identity documents for Russian citizens. He was charged, along with three other people, including a notary, the prosecution said, on September 28, and placed in preventive detention for a period of 30 days. while the investigation continues.
According to the indictment, the gang forged real Russian birth certificates, adding a relationship to a Uruguayan citizen. To do this, they identified an imaginary father or mother, of Uruguayan nationality, a real person, generally deceased. Since 1989, Uruguayan law provides for the right of blood: children of Uruguayans can obtain nationality themselves. Since 2016, this right has been extended to the grandchildren of Uruguayan citizens.
According to the investigation, the head of the presidential guard would be involved in this traffic since at least August 2021. In particular, he offered meetings with high-ranking officials, real or simulated, the prosecution specifies. According to Gabriela Fossati, the prosecutor in charge of the case, quoted by the Uruguayan newspaper The countryis about “hundreds or maybe thousands of falsified documents [d’identité] Uruguayans ». She also pointed out that“acted on his own account”.
Participation in more than twenty cases
The investigation has not yet determined whether this forgery was made in Uruguay or abroad, in particular at the consulate located in Russia. The irregularities had already been detected by the director of the department of identity cards, which depends on the Ministry of the Interior. On several occasions he asked his hierarchy to tighten the conditions for sending Uruguayan passports abroad. However, the alert that started the investigation came from Mexico. In 2021, the association of Russian citizens in Mexico reported that several Russians had used Uruguayan identity documents of doubtful authenticity.
In Tunisia, between 2010 and 2015 there was another traffic in identity documents whose threads were pulled by Russian diplomats, with the complicity of Tunisian officials. It led to the conviction of municipal employees, traces an investigation by independent Tunisian media. inkyfada.
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