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Nicaragua newspaper La Prensa says director convicted of money laundering

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By Reuters

MANAGUA – A judge on Wednesday found Juan Lorenzo Holmann Chamorro, director of newspaper La Prensa, guilty of money laundering, the paper said, in a case that critics of President Daniel Ortega argue is politically motivated.

Nicaragua’s judicial authorities did not immediately reply to a request for comment on the verdict. A sentence is due to be handed down on March 31, the newspaper said.

The ruling came in the same week that judges found Holmann’s cousins, ​​Cristiana Chamorro and Pedro Joaquin Chamorro, who are also on the board of the newspaper, guilty of money laundering and misuse of funds respectively.

La Prensa has been a staunch critic of Ortega, who argues that his adversaries have been attempting to force him out of office illegally with foreign support.

Holmann Chamorro has been under arrest since August when police raided and occupied the newspaper’s premises. Since then, the paper has only been published online.

He has maintained his innocence, and suggested that he and his relatives were being targeted for having the Chamorro name.

Cristiana and Pedro Joaquin are children of former President Violeta Barrios de Chamorro, who defeated Ortega in 1990 elections to end his first term in power.

The government did not immediately reply to a request for comment.