Prosecutor Meléndez replies to Senator Bianchi after accusing him of having dismissed the Sename case: “All cases of sexual abuse and violation of rights have been investigated”


The national prosecutor(s), Juan Agustin Melendez -and current candidate for office (he’s on the corner of the Supreme Court)-, responded this Thursday to an accusation by the senator Karim Bianchi (IND), who stressed that Meléndez has filed a case -since 2013- of sexual abuse and violation of the rights of children and adolescents (NNA) with the National Service for minors (Sename).

“He conducted an investigation into the Sename matter (…) When he took on that case, he was in charge of that case for two years and he dropped that case. It was a big national issue. Then Unicef ​​had to step in , and through a legal action that followed, it was ascertained that there had been a series of abuses and even deaths in the Sename homes,” Bianchi said in a video posted on his Twitter account.

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“An investigative commission of the Chamber of Deputies, which did not have all the equipment that Meléndez managed to have, both financial and expert, to be able to mobilize throughout Chile in two years, managed to establish that there were more than 200 dead”, added the lawmaker.

Videos via Twitter: @KarimBianchi

Response from Melendez

Prosecutor Meléndez indicated The meter that, as part of the case, called “Sename Surveys”, all cases of sexual abuse and violation of rights against children and adolescents were investigated by the Public Prosecutor.

The persecutor explained that “the facts investigated were sexual offenses and violation of the rights of children and adolescents, of which it was learned following an investigation carried out in the various houses of Sename at a national level”.

In turn, he comments that, following the investigations, the prosecutor’s office managed to identify the children and adolescents who were victims of it; He managed to verify that some facts had already been reported in the respective Local Prosecutors; provided new information to regional prosecutors and deputy prosecutors on the individual cases they were handling; based on the statements of children and adolescents, he denounced those cases that could constitute illegal actions or violation of rights, among other measures.

“Having verified the existence of ongoing investigations in the different regional prosecutor’s offices and having derived complaints from all the new cases with official letters, the objective and purpose of this investigation has been achieved,” commented Meléndez.

“All cases of sexual abuse and violation of rights detected have been investigated, all of them,” he stressed.

In this line, he specified that “once the objective of the investigation had been achieved, technically the lead case was provisionally closed because all the individual cases remained in force in each of the country’s prosecutors”.

History with the Bianchi family

Prosecutor Meléndez has a history with the Bianchi family. And it is that the persecutor asked in 2015 to formalize the then senator -and current deputy- Carl Bianchifather of Karim Bianchi, for tax fraud.

In 2015, the Magallanes regional prosecutor’s office requested a “hearing to formalize the charges for the crimes of incompatible negotiation and tax fraud against the Honorable Senator Carlos Bianchi and his sister-in-law, Victoria Retamales”.

To deal with these allegations, the Public Prosecutor requested the removal of then Senator Bianchi from the Punta Arenas Court of Appeals, which approved the removal of the law. Bianchi’s defense appealed to the Supreme Court, which ratified the decision taken by the appeal court. Even if he was acquitted in December of the same year by the guarantee court of Punta Arenas.

“The incompatible negotiation takes place in the context of signing a contract for a property that was owned by relatives -his wife, his mother-in-law and his two brothers-in-law-“, explained Meléndez in 2015.

The prosecutor challenged Bianchi for the crime of fraud against the Treasury “because it is estimated that there is a surcharge in the value of the rent and because there are transfers of money paid by the Senate, but it has not been proven that they came from current accounts of the defendant, causing fiscal damage”, he added on that occasion.

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