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Sócrates tries to “decapitate” Marquês corruption investigation

The fallout of the interview given to SIC TV by so-called “superjudge” Carlos Alexandre continued today with news sources reporting that former prime minister José Sócrates is now trying to “decapitate” the long-running Marquês investigation so that he can be released from the spectre of formal charges.

“Suspected” of money-laundering, fraud and corruption, Sócrates’ lawyers have long been complaining that all legal time-limits in this case that hit the headlines in 2014 have expired.

They lodged an appeal in August against various decisions made by Alexandre and public prosecutor Rosário Teixeira – maintaining both men should be removed from the case for incompetence.

Alexandre’s bizarre interview with SIC TV thus came as a kind of “the cherry on the cake” – complaining as he did of his hard life, lack of friends and basic underqualification for the title of “superjudge” (click here).

Writing in Diário de Notícias days after SIC’s broadcast, Sócrates accused Alexandre of flaunting his bias in an “unqualified abuse of power”.

Insinuations that “weighed words so as to condemn someone without trial” led Sócrates to conclude: “I have instructed my lawyers to present respective complaints to the competent judicial organs”.

National tabloid Correio da Manhã has called the development “checkmate to the investigation”.

Eyes that were on the meeting of the superior court of magistrates on September 27 – when judges were due to decide whether or not Alexandre was indeed“out of line” when he gave his rambling interview – now have to look even further, as the complaint by Sócrates is being seen as a new potential blot on Alexandre’s professionalism, and judges want more time to decide what they should do about it.

In the interim, “superjudge” is prohibited from making any further decisions on Marquês.

And at the same time, CM reports that the Public Ministry has given the probe another six months, “to the beginning of 2017”, as yet more ‘new leads’ in this “exceptionally complex” inquiry have to be followed up.

natasha.donn@algarveresident.com