Argentina: Police arrest girlfriend of man accused of trying to kill Cristina Fernández de Kirchner

The 23-year-old appeared in a video with the attacker on the day of the alleged assassination attempt in Buenos Aires despite claiming she had not seen him for 48 hours

Argentine Vice President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner greets supporters outside her residence in Buenos Aires, on Thursday.
Argentine Vice President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner greets supporters outside her residence in Buenos Aires, on Thursday.LUIS ROBAYO (AFP)

Argentinean police on Sunday arrested the sentimental partner of a man who is accused of trying to kill Vice President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner last Thursday outside her Buenos Aires home. The arrest was ordered by Judge Maria Eugenia Capuchetti, who is investigating the assassination attempt, official sources reported.

Brenda Elizabeth Uliarte, 23, was arrested by officers of the Antiterrorist Investigation Unit Department at the Palermo Ferrocarril San Martín train station in the capital, according to the news agency Télam.

The police investigation has determined that the girlfriend of Fernando Sabag Montiel, accused of the assassination attempt against Fernández de Kirchner, was with him on the day of the attack and that she lied when she stated that she had not seen him in the 48 hours prior to the alleged assassination attempt.

After analyzing footage from the security cameras near the residence of the vice president, investigators verified that the woman had been seen in the company of Sabag Montiel on the same day of the attack. Investigators believe that the assailant did not act alone.

“To tell you the truth, I don’t remember him ever mentioning the vice president. He complained about the dollar and the economy, like everyone else,” Uliarte told the television network Telefe. “I am very scared because they are taking away our possibility of working and also because they are blaming us for something we did not do,” she added.

Uliarte said she had found out about the attack on TV and that she was “perplexed” after the arrest of her boyfriend, whom she defined as “a good man” and “hard-working.” The woman later denied having seen the gun used by Sabag Montiel on Thursday and said she knew nothing about the 100 or so bullets found in a search of their home.

Kirchner’s lawyer, Gregorio Dalbón, had argued hours before the arrest that other people were involved in the attack, although he did not point to anyone in particular. The lawyer also criticized the fact that, after being confiscated by the police, the suspect’s cellphone suffered damage that reportedly prevents access to the information it contained.

The assassination attempt occurred when Fernández de Kirchner was signing autographs and greeting followers on Thursday night, a short distance from her home in the wealthy Buenos Aires neighborhood of Recoleta, where hundreds of protesters have been gathering for days to support her in the middle of a corruption trial that could send her to prison for up to 12 years.

Although the assailant pointed his gun at the vice president’s head and pulled the trigger twice, the gun did not work despite having five bullets in the magazine. Sabag Montiel had not cocked the Bersa .380 firearm, and investigators do not know if this was a mistake or if he did not really intend to kill Cristina Fernández de Kirchner. The suspect has refused to testify and has only accepted a court-appointed attorney.

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