Kenneth Rijock

Kenneth Rijock

Wednesday, January 11, 2017


Most lawyers are familiar with the precept that more cases are won on procedural, rather than substantive, grounds. Rumors are flying around Panama City to the effect that the US State Department intends to decline to extradite former Panamanian President Ricardo Martinelli, due to procedural defects in the extradition documents. You may recall that Martinelli's Panama attorneys made much of what they called errors in the creation of documents needed for the extradition, which were overruled by the courts.

Were there intentional errors made in the charging documents ? We would do well to remember that most of the members of the Supreme Court of Justice either owe their appointments to Martinelli, or are his known allies. Did someone deliberately sabotage the extradition ? If so, the entire process must begin again, regretfully, which in Panama means another delay of many months, at the very least.

Add this to the persistent rumor that Martinelli was able to enter the United States, due to the fact that he was, or still is, a Confidential Informant for an unnamed US law enforcement agency, or intelligence service, and that he is under its protection, while he remains in Miami.

Finally, there is an unconfirmed rumor that President-Elect Donald Trump has invited Sr. Martinelli to attend his Inauguration on January 20th, but has not invited the sitting Panamanian President, Juan Carlos Varela. Could this really be true ?

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