There has been an unexpected development Wednesday in the case of the late Argentine prosecutor Alberto Nisman, when a letter addressed to attorney Viviana Feinn, who is investigating Nisman’s death, accused the latter of taking state money in a kickback scheme.
It’s difficult to consider this revelation seriously, in a case that saw Nisman allegedly committing suicide on the eve of his appearance in Congress to point the finger at the country’s president, Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner, for dealing secretly with Iranian officials responsible for blowing up the Buenos Aires AMIA Jewish center. Nevertheless, report it we shall.
Will you offer us a hand? Every gift, regardless of size, fuels our future.
Your critical contribution enables us to maintain our independence from shareholders or wealthy owners, allowing us to keep up reporting without bias. It means we can continue to make Jewish Business News available to everyone.
You can support us for as little as $1 via PayPal at email@example.com.
The letter to Feinn claims that Diego Lagomarsino, a computer technician working for the prosecution, shared a New York bank account with Nisman, and, as a matter of course, turned over half of his salary to him. The New York account was handled by Nisman’s sister and mother, so once the money went in—Lagomarsino couldn’t retrieve it.
Lagomarsino also happened to be the last person to see Nisman alive. And his gun was found at the crime scene—he claimed Nisman had borrowed it.
Nisman’s ex-wife Sandra Arroyo has accused Lagomarsino of murdering her ex-husband over money issues.
Based on that letter, the President’s Cabinet Chief Anibal Fernandez told reporters Wednesday that Nisman illegally used funds dedicated to the investigation into the 1994 bombing that killed 85.
“We are among many scoundrels, including Nisman, ” Fernandez said.
Fernandez also said that Nisman used the investigation budget on women (and wine and song, naturally), and paid an inflated salary to his friend Lagomarsino, and took his kickback: Fernandez said Lagomarsino was paid $3, 400 a month, and gave Nisman $1, 650 back to Nisman.
According to Lagomarsino’s lawyer, his client decided to go public with this information to show that he was under Nisman’s thumb, and didn’t stand to gain anything murdering him. Like he said, he couldn’t clean up their NY account even if he wanted to.
Fernandez cited an Attorney General’s office report saying there were 10 irregular contracts in the AMIA investigation unit, where Nisman was paying high salaries to unqualified people: his nutritionist, supposedly, was on contract for $3, 000 a month.
According to Wiki, in 1994, Fernandez himself was charged with misappropriating funds and a judge ordered his arrest. According to the daily La Nación, he “was a fugitive for 48 hours, from 26 to 28 October.” On October 27, 1994, his picture appeared on the front page of La Prensa alongside the headline: “Arrest warrant for mayor of Quilmes.” Fernández, who ended up being charged with the falsification of a public document, insisted many years later: “I was not a fugitive, ever.”