judgment is though likely to be appealed and spend years winding
through higher courts even if it goes against the former
two-term president, who commands rock-star crowds of supporters.
Fernandez de Kirchner, president between 2007 and 2015, is
facing charges by prosecutors of alleged corruption in the
awarding of public works during her government. She has denied
the allegations and called the court a "firing squad."
"It is evident that there is going to be a conviction,"
Fernandez de Kirchner said in an interview with Brazilian
newspaper Folha de Sao Paulo published on Monday. She alleged
constitutional guarantees were violated during the process.
A guilty sentence could trigger angry reactions from Fernandez
de Kirchner's supporters in a country enduring a long economic
crisis, inflation heading towards 100% and where many talk of a
political schism between left and right.
It could also cast a shadow over the ruling Peronist government
of President Alberto Fernandez, which is facing a tough battle
to fend off a challenge from the conservative opposition in
general elections set for next year.
Prosecutors allege public works contracts were handed to a
businessman ally of Fernandez de Kirchner, who then channeled
money back to her and late husband Nestor Kirchner, also a
Defenders of the vice president say she is a victim of judicial
If Fernandez de Kirchner were disqualified from public office,
that could have a significant impact, said Julio Burdman,
director of the Electoral Observatory consultancy.
"The relationship between the ruling coalition and opposition
would be greatly strained and the ruling party as a whole would
react strongly and denounce it as persecution," he said.
(Reporting by Nicolás Misculin, Editing by Rosalba O'Brien)
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