Socialist friends believe José Sócrates is innocent until proved guilty

justiceThe honorary president of the Socialist Party, Almeida Santos said today that he believes in the innocence of José Sócrates, whom he visited this afternoon in Évora jail and that the former prime minister "has been held without being charged" or "convicted of anything."

"I have a great admiration for him and the truth is that he is stuck there without being accused of anything, "therefore, as he has not been convicted by a court, I believe in his innocence," added Santos.

Almeida Santos arrived at the prison and was quizzed by waiting journalists. The honorary president was with former socialist minister Jorge Lacão who is a current member of the national policy committee of the party.

Santos said that he was visiting the prison to "give a hug" to the former prime minister, who he said was a friend.

After the hour long visit, Santos reported that José Sócrates was in good spirits and happy, adding that, "It's the same old Sócrates."

Almeida Santos described the former PM as "a serious man," and that be believed in his innocence.

"Not only because he is José Sócrates. I believe, until proven otherwise, in the innocence of any individual who is arrested without being judged or condemned by a court," he said.

Asked by journalists about whether this case involves consequences for the Socialist Party, the honorary chairman said, "I do not think do, why?" adding that at the Socialist Party’s recent annual congress the party was not affected or involved in the case, making it clear that his visit today was in a private capacity.

Jorge Lacão said that José Sócrates has been a friend of his for many years and, as with many friends of the former prime minister, everyone is "deeply grieved by what happened and what is happening."

"But I am aware that we live in a democratic state and I believe in the functioning of our judicial institutions," said Laçao, adding that he continued to believe that, in this democratic state, justice will prevail.

Portugal’s former prime minister José Sócrates is being held in custody at Évora jail, indicted for tax fraud, money laundering and corruption.

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Comments  

+3 #2 Henry Moore 2014-12-03 10:39
Foreigners, the British particularly, must get their heads round the reality that none of the Portuguese 'government departments or organs of the state' existed as we know them ... before 40 years ago.

This was a remarkably backward country and still clearly battling today with the new EU ways.

There was no history of democracy as we know it. No open to your conscience voting. Your vote before then, if you had one, got you favours and protection in a one party state.

Everything was geared up to the interests of the state. 'Enemies of the state' - often perfectly innocent but 'in the way' were identified by the dodgies wanting results in their neighbourhood. Many disappeared.

OK a choice of parties nowadays but many still vote to get favours and protection ... so not much changed there then !

And if you look at the mess Portugal is in both socially and economically today and that 'politicians' like these made it so - what exactly are these two jokers saying?

Are they referring to the old, previous to EU justice ? A time when 'their boy' would never have been troubled by petty stuff like tax law.
+3 #1 Peter Booker 2014-12-02 22:09
This article reminds me of that wonderful song:

One evening in October
When I was about one-third sober
And was taking home a load with manly pride
My poor feet began to stutter
So I lay down in the gutter
And a pig came up and lay down by my side

Then we sang "It's All Fair Weather"
And "Good Fellows Get Together"
Till a lady passing by was heard to say
She says, "You can tell a man who boozes
By the company he chooses"
And the pig got up and slowly walked away

And the company that Almeida Santos and Jorge Lacão choose?

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