Angop - Agência de Notícias Angola Press

Rafael Marques's trial resumes on April 24 at Attorney General's Office

Mon, 16 Apr 2018 18:44 - Politics

Luanda - The second session of the trial of Angolan activist Rafael Marques and journalist Mariano Brás, accused of "insults and outrage to the sovereign body", was rescheduled for April 24, at the Attorney General's Office.

  • Trial of political activist Rafael Marques (left) and journalist Mariano Brás
  • Rafael Marques, Activista Político
  • Activista Político, Rafael Marques
  • Activista Político, Rafael Marques (à esq.)
  • Activista Político, Rafael Marques (à esq.)
  • Salvador Freire, Advogado

The judicial authorities justify holding the next hearing at the PGR, which must be attended by the offended (João Maria de Sousa), as he is a retired magistrate and the Law grants him immunities. Subsequent sections must be resumed at the Provincial Court of Luanda.

The first hearing of the two accused took place on 19 March, without the presence of the complainant or his lawyer.

Rafael Marques attends the trial due to an article published in October 2016, on the Maka Angola portal, in which he raises suspicions of corruption against the then Attorney General of the Republic, João Maria de Sousa.

In the article, the activist denounces an allegedly illegal business, carried out by the former PGR of Angola, involving a three-hectare of land plot in Porto Amboim, Cuanza Sul province, supposedly for the construction of a residential condominium.

The case also involves another Angolan journalist, Mariano Brás, for having published the same article in his newspaper, "The Crime".

Salvador Freire, a lawyer defending Mariano Brás, said on Monday he was convinced that the defendants will be acquitted in this case. "This is our understanding and we will do everything to make it happen."

On the other hand, the activist and journalist Rafael Marques said he does not understand why the next hearing is held exactly at the headquarters of the prosecutor's office that promotes the prosecution.

He understands that "all this is intended to prevent people from being present when General Joao Maria gives his testimony. This is what defiles the zeal and probity of state institutions. It does not make any sense."

To him, the immunities of the former Attorney General of the Republic should not overlap with the duty of exemption that justice deserves. "This is the privatization of the state institutions that we have to combat."