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'Free Sócrates and apologise,' demands Mário Soares

soaresPortugal’s former Head of State insists that José Sócrates should be released and an apology issued.

Mário Soares wrote today that "José Sócrates is still in prison after almost six months without being charged and tried" and "should be released as soon as possible and with due apologies."

The former president remains one of Sócrates’ staunchest allies despite his friend having been held on charges of qualified tax fraud, corruption and money laundering since November last year.

"The judge Carlos Alexandre and the prosecutor Rosário Teixeira have tried to find a reason to charge him. They have not succeeded. This is why any sane person recognises that Sócrates must be released as soon as possible and with due apologies," according to Soares.

The prosecution still is gathering evidence with which to mount a successful prosecution and has not broken any laws by holding Sócrates for this length of time in preventative custody.

Since April, the head of Lena Group, José Baroque has been confined to house arrest and prosecutor Rosário Teixeira has claimed that Sócrates received or benefited from the sum of €17 million illegally obtained.

Sócrates says that it is not true that there exists any special relationship between him and Baroque and that he had met Baroque only "half a dozen times in my life."

The former prime minister still claims that he has been the victim of abuse by the authorities who have arrested and detained him without evidence.

 Sócrates denies having committed any crime of corruption involving Lena Group.

"Who accuses without foundation offends and insults. Who holds someone in prison while investigating him not only denies him democratic justice, but gives him the awful suspicion that he is being held for reasons of political persecution," claims Sócrates.

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-3 #7 Benny 2015-05-14 18:57
OK Soares
They might think about it, but only if you give them a hint, as to where a rather large lump Portugal's Gold Reserves ended up ! :-?
-1 #6 Jeff Smith 2015-05-13 15:19
We must be absolutely clear that the EU is all about economic growth. Intra and extra its member states. OK Germany skews it a bit by being so successful at selling its products within the EU in particular.

And equally clear how Portugal totally failed to do anything sustainable with the hundreds of billions that Brussels, to use Karel's definition - gifted to it.

Gifted on the understanding that it 'substantially grew its economy'. Which Portugal so obviously hasn't.

Portugal being so damaged in refusing to accept other EU citizens being economically active within its borders with their own businesses that it was actually sending back hundreds of millions of the 'gift' as unused.

Not sent back as unwanted ... as foreign EU entrepreneurs from successful EU economies would have killed for a portion of this Objective 1 money ! Had they been allowed to access it.

But Portugal's urge to stop inward investment won out and so it failed. And, read todays EU country report ... is still failing.

0 #5 Peter Booker 2015-05-13 10:57
In the relationship between the lender and the borrower, each of them has the task of securing his own interests. So when the EU lent money to Portugal under Sócrates, what measures did it take to ensure that Portugal had the means to repay the loan? How did the EU supervise Portugal´s expenditure?

All right, Sócrates and his henchmen have acted like criminals. But in my view, the EU is equally culpable for not looking after its taxpayers´ money. And how many of the men in suits in Brussels face an inquiry into their criminal record in lending?
-3 #4 Karel 2015-05-13 09:53
Thanks Steve. Read Harry Hatton's "The Portugese" and you'll find out that putting socialist Soares in power in 74 was probably the most dramatic political decision ever made in this country. And "pupil" Socrates is only following his "tutor" Soares.... As far as the Troika concerns: 3 times in history Portugal received a substantial GIFT from the EU. This time Socrates claimed for a LOAN. The difference is of course that a loan is supposed to be refunded. EU only wanted "to help" this country and did definitely not impose a loan whatsoever. Lots of English friend don't understand the difference between these 2 words...
-1 #3 Peter Booker 2015-05-13 08:23
I think that the Sócrates case is a bad precedent. In the future a government will have this case to look back on while they lock up political opponents. All right, they say that this is preventive custody, and legally sanctioned, but why is it taking so long to produce a case against him?

Sócrates and his cronies are extremely unpopular, and the Portuguese I speak to are quite happy to see him behind bars. It is significant that there is no-one speaking up for his rights but Soares, who himself has lost a great deal of popularity.

The real problem is that nobody nowadays trusts any politician at all, because so many of them are on the make personally, and display no signs of political honesty or honour. And so any politician has to be prepared to reap the whirlwind.
-1 #2 Steve.O 2015-05-13 08:18
Karel, as a north European (Belgian?) often usefully hits the nail on the head.

The point is that, in a country like Portugal that was never suitable to be in the EU - as it has been run for all time by bandits for bandits - Soares only achievement is to have got in and out with his riches before the Troika arrived. The Troika banging heads on behalf of the rest of Europe.

And making clear that there would be nothing resembling a debt bailout until Portugal began to get some grip on the lawlessness.

One core problem being that Portugal - like the rest of the Club Med - never had the backbone to opt-out of EU regulations it could not, through insufficient development, implement.

So passing laws that dilute their original intent and then not even enforcing them. The UK being morally strong enough to opt out.

Not least from some parts as EU Human Rights legislation. Such as all are equal before the law. For centuries in the UK all have already been 'equal before the law'. It has meaning.

What meaningless nonsense for Latino's to claim they implement this clause !!!
+4 #1 Karel 2015-05-12 19:40
:-x It's clear Soares after so many years in (socialist) politics is not able to make the distinction between " good and bad". Therefore he was involved far too long in the political shameful circus himself.

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