(CNN Spanish) — The President of Peru, Pedro Castillo, appointed a new Commander General of the National Police on Saturday, also relieving the Chief of Staff and the Inspector General of this institution.
According to the resolution published in the Official Gazette El Peruano, Police Lieutenant General Raúl Alfaro Alvarado is the new Commander General to replace Luis Vera Llerena. Similarly, General Vicente Álvarez was appointed Chief of Staff and General Segundo Mejía Montenegro as Inspector General of the Police.
These changes in the police high command come after, as reported by CNN, Castillo’s lawyer, Eduardo Pachas, requested on Thursday the former Police Inspector General to investigate and punish Colonel Harvey Colchado, head of the detective team. that works together with the Prosecutor’s Office in the investigation of cases of alleged corruption involving the presidential environment.
According to Pachas’ complaint, Colonel Harvey Colchado, in the course of his intervention in the presidential residence, would have reviewed documents classified as “state secrets” and “would have caused unnecessary damage” to the president’s home and individual liberty, for what he asked that the Police open a disciplinary process, investigate it and “remove” it.
The Peruvian Ombudsman’s Office stated in a statement that the successive changes in the Police “difficult and alter the correct development of public policies on citizen security.”
Likewise, the Ombudsman’s statement published on Twitter points out that this institution considers it necessary to guarantee the institutionality and independence of the Police, “all the more so when the recent changes have been made in the midst of judicial investigations of the president and his entourage.”
In dialogue with CNN, the Popular Renovation congressman, Jorge Montoya, considered that these changes constitute an “abuse of authority” by President Castillo, who, in his opinion, would be “trying to interfere” in the investigations.” The parliamentarian anticipated that on Monday the Minister of the Interior, Willy Huerta Olivas, will be summoned to the Defense Commission of Congress to provide explanations of what happened.
For her part, in an interview with Radio Programas del Peru, the prosecutor in charge of the Special Team of Prosecutors against corruption in power, Marita Barreto, stated that the President of the Republic “should help clarify the facts” and He also pointed out that “no one has absolute power” stressing that the balance of powers implies respect for the autonomy of institutions.
Consulted by CNN, Castillo’s lawyer, Eduardo Pachas, defended the president’s decision and considered that the changes in the police high command are “irrelevant” because “the investigations are already done” and demanded that the Prosecutor’s Office explain “what is the diligence that has not been done”.
Pachas also defended his complaint against Colonel Colchado, which is based, as he stated, on “concrete facts.”