Home of Peru’s president raided in search of luxury watches

Home of Peru’s president raided in search of luxury watches

Peru’s government on Saturday criticised the raid on the home of its president, Dina Boluarte, as part of inquiries into possible illicit enrichment and failure to declare ownership of luxury watches as “disproportionate and unconstitutional”.

Police broke down the door of Boluarte’s residence early on Saturday morning, television images showed, apparently after calls by officials to allow them access to search for evidence went unanswered.

Boluarte’s house is located in the Lima district of Surquillo, a few kilometres from the government palace.

About 20 officials from the public prosecutor’s office and 20 police first raided Boluarte’s house before then entering the palace on Saturday morning, Eduardo Arana, the justice minister, said. Boluarte has made no comment on the raid.

“Personnel from the palace provided all the facilities for the diligence requested,” the presidency said on X, adding that it was carried out “normally and without any incident”.

However, Peru’s prime minister, Gustavo Adrianzen, criticised the raids. “The political noise that is being made is serious, affecting investments and the entire country,” he wrote on X. “What has happened in the last few hours is disproportionate and unconstitutional actions.”

Adrianzen said the president was in her residence inside the government palace and that she would make statements to the prosecutor’s office when summoned. He also told radio station RPP there was “no way” ministers or Boluarte planned to resign.

Two weeks ago, prosecutors began preliminary inquiries after local news outlet La Encerrona reported that the president possessed several Rolex watches.

The inquiry intended to establish whether there were grounds for a formal investigation.

Boluarte, who took office in December 2022, has acknowledged that she owns Rolex watches, but has said she bought them with money she has earned since she was young.

Earlier this month, she said she had entered the president’s office with her hands clean and would leave the same way.

The prosecutor’s office had tried unsuccessfully to conduct a check of the watches at Boluarte’s office last Wednesday, but her lawyers had said there was a clash of diary appointments and sought to reschedule.

The inquiry into Boluarte is the latest in a long history of investigations into Peruvian presidents and senior officials.

Source: theguardian.com