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Former Panamanian President arrives home to face charges of illegal wiretapping

12 June 2018

The United States on Monday (June 11) extradited former Panamanian president Ricardo Martinelli to the Central American country, the U.S. State Department said. Martinelli is facing charges of illegal wiretapping. Martinelli was arrested in June 2017 in Miami after he had used public money to spy on more than 150 political rivals during his 2009-2014 administration.

However, Martinelli said he is a victim of political persecution by current president Juan Carlos Varela. Panamanian authorities said Martinelli will be held at the Renacer prison outside Panama City.