Ecuadorian court upholds corruption conviction for ex-president

A court in Ecuador upheld a sentence handed down in April against ex-President Rafael Correa and barred him from taking part in the 2021 presidential elections, Anadolu Agency reports.

In its ruling on September 7, the National Court dismissed Correa’s appeal to annul the ruling that sentenced him to prison and took away his citizenship rights.

Following the decision, Correa will not be allowed to run for vice president for the National Union for Hope (UNES) coalition next year and has been banned from participating in politics for 25 years.

“In record time they draw a final sentence to disqualify me as a candidate,” Correa wrote on Twitter. “Remember: the only thing they condemn us to is to win.”

Correa was sentenced to 8 years in prison in April on bribery and corruption charges. The court also ordered him to pay $ 14.7 million in reparations to the state. Currently, the ex-president lives in Belgium.

The court convicted him, former Vice President Jorge Glas and other former ministers and government officials on charges of accepting approximately $8 million in bribes for his campaign in exchange for lucrative public works contracts.

The former president, who was in power for 10 years until 2017, has rejected the charges and blamed them on political persecution from former ally and current President Lenin Moreno.