There are reports that an Indictment will issue soon in Italy, against Panama's President, Ricardo Alberto Martinelli Berrocal, as well as his son, Ricardo Martinelli Linares. We have previously discussed* the ongoing investigation being conducted by Italian authorities, alleging that bribes and kickbacks were paid to Martinelli, in connection with major military sales and construction projects in Panama by Italian companies, including one owned by the state. Martinelli, it is alleged, was to receive a free helicopter for approving a government contract for six.
The President of Panama is a dual national of Italy, where his father emigrated from, and the Republic of Panama. His extradition may prove problematic. There are indications that the United States has already begun to distance itself from Martinelli, and to support the Vice President of Panama.
President of Panama linked to Bribes and Kickbacks in Military Purchasing scandal