VarelaLeaks: A new high profile scandal rocks Panama

Panama - Panama faces a new scandal with revelations of the workings of power, regarding the content of an allegedly lost cell phone.

In essence, the content implicates former president Juan Carlos Varela in the conspiracy to overthrow the legitimate government of Nicolas Maduro in Venezuela, including the organization of the coup-plotting Group of Lima and corruption to favor a select group of Panamanian private companies with state contracts, among other issues.

Actions to avoid press criticism of his government are also mentioned, with harsh descriptions of journalists who complained about alleged manipulations of justice and the cover-up of the Odebrecht case, by means of maneuvers to hide the accusations of some involved.

So far, none of the those allegedly involved have accepted or denied the revelations presented on the website, where hundreds of compromising messages sent via the WhatsApp app be read, some of which identify telephone numbers.

The authors of the leaks presented themselves as 'a group of Latin American citizens committed to democracy and tired of the corruption and abuse of our authorities,' and confessed that because of their 'very limited resources,' it took weeks to detect the content.

According to the presentation text on the website, the anonymous complainants received a cell phone, and on analyzing it concluded that it contained conversations between Varela and members of his cabinet, the Attorney General, ambassadors and political representatives between 2017 and 2018.

In addition, they informed that the unprocessed data was made available for download, and communicated with press media to participate in the analysis, dissemination and investigation of the content, with the aim of generating complaints so that those involved do not go unpunished.

The website was enabled on October 31, but it was only on Tuesday that its existence began to spread, and Prensa Latina learned that it is hosted on a server of the Cloudflare company, based in the US city of San Francisco, California. The domain is under a privacy certificate and does not show its owner.

Local press reported the leaks last night, without confirming the authenticity of the content, except for the newspaper Panamá América, of the media emporium of billionaire and former president Ricardo Martinelli, which described the leaks as 'the latest political scandal in Panama.'

According tof some analysts and comments on social networks, the leak is a smokescreen to divert attention from sanctions placed on a company in Spanish courts, which was said to have paid bribes to Martinelli in Panama.

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