Peru Set to Jail Third Ex-President as Toledo Awaits Extradition from U.S.

Former Peru's President Alejandro Toledo and his wife Eliane Karp arrives to the 2015 IMF/World Bank Annual Meetings in Lima, Peru, October 8, 2015. REUTERS/Guadalupe Pardo/File Photo
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LIMA, April 6 (Reuters) – A U.S. court rejected an appeal by former Peruvian president Alejandro Toledo to stall his extradition over corruption charges, making it likely that he will be the third former leader to be held in a purpose-built jail in Lima.

Peru’s Justice Minister Jose Tello said on Wednesday night that a California court judge had ordered Toledo to turn himself in on Friday to the U.S. Marshals Service and await extradition after his request for bail was revoked.

Toledo, who was president from 2001 to 2006, is wanted over charges that he received more than $25 million from Brazilian construction company Odebrecht in exchange for help in obtaining public works contracts. Prosecutors are seeking a 20-year-and-six-month prison sentence.

Toledo has denied soliciting or receiving bribes and has not been criminally charged in the U.S. Reuters could not immediately reach the former president or his defense team for comment.

Sooner rather than later, Toledo will answer to Peruvian justice,” Tello told television station Canal N, adding that his extradition should take place in a “matter of days”.

The Peruvian minister said 77-year-old Toledo is expected to be held while he awaits trial in a jail complex in the outskirts of Lima that was built to hold former president Alberto Fujimori. Former president Pedro Castillo is also being held there.

Fujimori, who ruled from 1990 to 2000, is serving a 25-year prison sentence for human rights abuses, while Castillo is being held in pre-trial detention while he is under investigation for alleged rebellion after trying to dissolve Congress in December. He denies wrongdoing.

Toledo’s defense has said it will present another appeal in the U.S., according to Tello, who called it an obvious “delaying tactic.”

Toledo was arrested in the U.S. in July 2019 following a formal request by Peru for his extradition. After being released on bail in 2020, the former president remained residing in California until at least last year.

Reporting by Marco Aquino; Writing by Steven Grattan, Editing by Rosalba O’Brien
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