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Police arrest Roberto Larios, Judicial Branch spokesman, and take him to El Chipote

Third Supreme Court official arrested in two weeks, by “superior orders” of the Sandinista Front

Third Supreme Court official ordered the Police to arrest Roberto Larios in two weeks

Redacción Confidencial

18 de octubre 2022


Roberto Larios Meléndez, spokesperson and general director of the Communications area of the Supreme Court of Justice (CSJ), was arrested by the National Police, confirmed sources linked to the Judicial Power.

Workers of the Supreme Court revealed that police agents arrived at the CSJ headquarters on Friday and searched Larios' office. Subsequently, during the night, they captured him at his home and transferred him to the Judicial Assistance Directorate, known as El Chipote.

The official reasons for the arrest are not known at this time.

The journalist and lawyer has worked in the Judicial Branch since 1996. Previously, he worked as a court reporter for the now-defunct newspaper Barricada, owned by the Sandinista Front.

He assumed the General Communications Directorate of the CSJ in 2010, which was created that same year to “articulate under a single leadership all the Press and Public Relations offices of the Judiciary,” according to the Court’s website.

The official is considered “close” and “loyal” to the hard-line FSLN secretariat in El Carmen, and frequently participates in party activities. He has censored and attacked journalists and independent media for publishing information critical of the Supreme Court's subordination to the ruling party.

Larios uses his social networks to show his loyalty to the FSLN and defend the regime. In a Facebook post on November 12, 2021, the spokesman asked himself, “SANCTIONS AGAINST ME? Hahahahahahahaha, we will eat corn... if God and the Virgin are with us, then who mentioned fear?”. The publication came days before the US Treasury Department sanctioned nine high-ranking officials of the dictatorship and the Public Ministry, after the electoral farce in which Ortega and Murillo were reelected.

On July 19, 2019, he published a photo together with the press team of the courts in which they were celebrating the anniversary of the revolution. The image was accompanied by a text that read: “Today, like 40 years ago, the Sandinistas entered Managua victorious, from all the guerrilla fronts; I thank God for having granted me the privilege of being here... Courage brothers! We defeated the coup, always loyal to our principles, never traitors!”.

Third CSJ official falls in two weeks

The fall of the veteran official is the third in the last two weeks, presumably on orders from the FSLN Secretariat.

This Thursday CONFIDENCIAL published the dismissal “on orders from above” of Katia Jaentschke Acevedo and Ruth Tapia Roa, director of international relations and Protocol of the CSJ, respectively.

Katia Jaentschke is the daughter of former vice-chancellor Valdrack Jaentschke Whitaker, political operator of the regime and current “minister counselor” at the embassy in Costa Rica.

Tapia has had a long career in the Ortega Murillo government as secretary of the Ministry of Defense (2007-2012), ambassador to France, and spent three months as representative to the Organization of American States (OAS).

Both officials were dismissed at the beginning of October. The orders came directly from El Carmen, where the presidential office and the FSLN secretariat, in charge of Néstor Moncada Lau, are located.

On October 11, CONFIDENCIAL published an interview with “Sergio”, an official with more than a decade of work experience in the Judicial Branch, who expressed the “weariness” that exists among public servants with the system of political surveillance to which they are subjected by the FSLN.

According to his account, the main executors of this strict control are magistrates, judges, and union members, but even they are not spared from the new prohibitions: traveling outside the country or attending masses and processions of the Catholic Church.


This article was originally published in Spanish in Confidencial and translated by Our Staff

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Redacción Confidencial

Redacción Confidencial

Confidencial es un diario digital nicaragüense, de formato multimedia, fundado por Carlos F. Chamorro en junio de 1996. Inició como un semanario impreso y hoy es un medio de referencia regional con información, análisis, entrevistas, perfiles, reportajes e investigaciones sobre Nicaragua, informando desde el exilio por la persecución política de la dictadura de Daniel Ortega y Rosario Murillo.