A former first lady of Honduras, accused of embezzling public funds, wants her assets back.
‘Lady’s Little Cash Box’: Former Honduran First Lady Arrested
The defense of the former first lady of Honduras, Rosa Elena Bonilla de Lobo, wife of the ex-president, Porfirio Lobo (2010-2014) is asking the court to return the Bonilla’s real estate that it took by law when she was detained in February for syphoning approximately US$680,000 in state funds to her personal bank accounts.
Bonilla’s lawyer, Julio Ramirez, who made the petition yesterday, saying that the seized real estate was purchased by Bonilla in 1986, 2002, 2010, 2015, not between 2011 and 2014 – the timeframe that of the former first lady’s supposed graft scheme.
"This is an excessive resolution carried out by (judge) Veda Barahora for taking real estate that doesn’t refer to the facts of the investigation," wrote Ramirez. He added, "We denounce this … seizure, which violates property rights.”
Authorities seized 10 properties belonging to Bonilla when she was arrested at her home on Feb. 28, together which measure over 3,200 acres.
The case, dubbed Lady’s Little Cash Box, involves the ex-first lady and at least nine accomplices who, over a period of four years and 70 checks, allegedly syphoning nearly US$680,000 in government funds and donations to Bonilla’s private bank accounts. Some of the funds include donations made by the Chinese-Taiwanese embassy destined for the Organization for Ethical Community Development, an organization which helps Afro-Honduran communities under Bonilla’s care while her husband was in office.