Peru’s president will reply questions over possession of luxurious watches, her legal professionals say

LIMA, Peru (AP) — Peru’s President Dina Boluarte will reply questions Friday over her possession of a trio of luxurious watches, her attorneys stated Tuesday, a day after she reshuffled her cupboard as an alleged illicit enrichment scandal additional threatens her presidency.

The Cupboard shakeup Monday got here as lawmakers submitted to Parliament a request to take away Boluarte from workplace for “permanent moral incapacity.” The request got here three days after police broke down the entrance door of her residence to seek for the watches as a part of an investigation.


The regulation agency of lawyer Mateo Castañeda, Boluarte’s lawyer, stated on X, previously Twitter, that the Lawyer Common’s Workplace denied her consumer’s request to maneuver up the interview’s date and that prosecutors stated “they are not responsible for the political whirlwind” in Peru.


Peru’s President Dina Boluarte talks to the press on the finish of the Amazon Summit in Belem, Brazil, Aug. 8, 2023.  (AP Picture/Eraldo Peres)

Prosecutors have additionally instructed Boluarte to point out them the watches Friday.

The shake-up comes as Boluarte struggles to control amid sinking reputation, investigations in opposition to her and frequent scandals involving senior officers. The newest appointments had been for ministers of inside, schooling, ladies, agriculture, manufacturing and overseas commerce.

All outgoing ministers submitted their resignation Monday. Inside Minister Víctor Torres informed reporters his was as a consequence of a household matter whereas the heads of the Ministry of Ladies, Nancy Tolentino, and of Schooling, Miriam Ponce, didn’t provide causes within the bulletins they shared on social media.

Benjamin Gedan, director of the Latin America program on the Washington-based Wilson Middle assume tank, stated the adjustments “will not move the needle on public opinion or reduce the chances of impeachment or protests.”

“It is hard to imagine anything short of new elections could prevent yet another political crisis, though the president and her similarly unpopular allies in Congress will try to ride this out,” he stated Tuesday.

Market analysis agency Ipsos measured Boluarte’s unpopularity fee at 88% in March.

Boluarte is being preliminarily investigated for allegedly buying an undisclosed assortment of luxurious watches since turning into vice chairman and social inclusion minister in July 2021 after which president in December 2022. She didn’t record the three watches in an compulsory asset declaration type.

Boluarte has denied the illicit enrichment accusations.

Lawmakers’ request to take away her from workplace cites the investigation in addition to countrywide issues, similar to rising crime. The request was submitted by lawmakers from varied events together with Peru Libre to which Boluarte as soon as belonged.

Lawmakers are anticipated to contemplate the request Thursday. The transfer should earn 52 votes to ensure that Parliament to simply accept it and open a debate. To take away Boluarte, the transfer requires 87 votes from the 130-seat unicameral Parliament, and to this point, 5 events that collectively have 54 votes expressed assist for the president following the raid.

Late Friday, armed cops broke down the entrance door of Boluarte’s home with a battering ram and entered the property to seek for the watches. They didn’t discover them.

The raid marked the primary time in Peru’s historical past that police forcibly entered the house of a sitting president.

The probe started in mid-March after a TV present spotlighted Boluarte carrying a Rolex watch that’s value as much as $14,000 in Peru. Different TV exhibits later talked about a minimum of two extra Rolexes. Neither Boluarte nor her lawyer have answered questions from reporters concerning the watches, together with whether or not they’re genuine.

Boluarte, a 61-year-old lawyer, was a modest district official earlier than coming into then-President Pedro Castillo’s authorities on a month-to-month wage of $8,136 in July 2021. She turned president in December 2022 — when Parliament dismissed Castillo — with a decrease wage of $4,200 monthly and commenced carrying the watches shortly after.

If prosecutors finally cost Boluarte with illicit enrichment, they must defer prosecution till after her time period ends in 2026.


Boluarte can also be being preliminarily investigated for her alleged position in lethal protests that adopted Castillo’s dismissal. Castillo is now imprisoned whereas being investigated for alleged corruption and insurrection.

Peru is not any stranger to presidential crises. No president has completed a full time period since 2016, and the South American nation cycled by way of three of them in every week in 2020, when lawmakers flexed their impeachment powers.