August 8th, former vice-president of argentina, cristina fernández de kirchner, was found guilty of corruption and sentenced to six years in prison. lázaro báez, the owner of a construction firm who was accused of being the main beneficiary of the scheme, was also sentenced to six years in prison. eleven people were put on trial in argentina over irregularities in public work tenders in the southern province of santa cruz. seven of them were found guilty and sentenced to between three and a half and six years in prison, while three were released and one had their case dismissed.
Crime took place in argentina, and the trial began in april 2018 and concluded in august of the same year. fernández de kirchner has immunity and will remain free while she appeals her sentence all the way to the supreme court, a process which could take years. the former vice-president has been banned from public office for life and could potentially run for the senate or the presidency in the 2023 election.
Alleged that fernández de kirchner had created a scheme during her time as president of argentina (2007-2015) to steer lucrative public work contracts towards a friend in return for bribes. according to the prosecutor, diego luciani, the alleged kickback scheme had caused the argentine state a loss of at least $1bn (£818m). fernández de kirchner accused prosecutors of lying and slandering her and claimed the charges were politically motivated. on 1 september, vice-president fernández became the target of an attempted assassination when a 35-year-old man attempted to point a gun at her head.