The Ortega justice system sentenced the political prisoners, Anielka García and Olesia Muñoz, to eight and ten years in prison, respectively, for the alleged crimes of “conspiracy to commit harm to the national integrity” and “propagation of false news.” confirmed sources related to both cases.
García’s sentencing establishes five years in prison for conspiracy and three years for false news. In addition, she was fined 38,815 Cordoba’s (around $1,100 USD) and barred from running for public office, cites the document, dated August 23, obtained by CONFIDENCIAL.
Muñoz was taken to the capital Courts on August 17. Her defenseless trial lasted 5 hours. It is not known what evidence the Prosecutor’s Office presented.
Contrary to Muñoz’s case, Garcia found out about her trial through a video call from La Esperanza prison, in Tipitapa, while her court appointed defense lawyer was in the Managua Courts.
Search and seizure without a warrant
Anielka Garcia is originally from Chichigalpa, Chinandega, graduating in Marketing from the National Autonomous University of Nicaragua (UNAN-León). She was abducted on the night of April 4, 2023, through an operation by riot police and regular officers. The agents surrounded the screen-printing business owned by the young woman, entered without a court order and stole machines, printers and everything they found in their path.
Garcia had filled an order for blue and white t-shirts, with a guardabarranco (Nicaragua’s national bird) in the center, accompanied by the legend “Abril Vive”, “Viva Nicaragua Libre” (April Lives, Long live a free Nicaragua), said a source close to the university student. Everything indicates that she was denounced for the screen printing of that t-shirt, whose message corresponds to the cry for freedom raised in the civic protests of 2018.
Garcia is a single mother of two young children: one eight years old and the other 16 months.
Muñoz had already been a political prisoner. The soprano and music teacher was released from jail in June 2019, benefiting from an Amnesty Law, designed by the Ortega regime to shield its Police and paramilitary responsible for the 2018 massacres. She had been arrested along with her sister, Tania Muñoz, on July 31, 2018, for supporting the protests in Niquinohomo.
Since her release from prison, Muñoz distanced herself from political and civil society organizations to dedicate herself to her passion: music. To survive, she was working with a truck, doing any type of hauling, gardening, and keeping her schedule always receptive to any private mass that requested her talent in the choir. She was abducted for a second time on Holy Thursday, April 6, 2023. Some 15 troops and paramilitaries went to her house, requesting that she accompany them for an “interview”, from which she did not return.
Almost a dozen political prisoners sentenced
With the sentencing of Muñoz and García, there are at least eleven citizens sentenced, of those who were detained in April 2023, in the context of the fifth anniversary of the civic protests. In addition to these, between August and September the vice president of the April 19 University Movement, Jasson Salazar Rugama, and the former Sandinista guerrilla and political prisoner, Abdul Montoya Vivas, were also sentenced.
Last May, the following citizens were found guilty without evidence: Martha Lorena Centeno Marín, Hazel del Socorro Martínez Ulloa, Luis Enrique Obando Palma, Ivonne Patricia Espinoza Hurtado, Brenda Lee Baldelomar Aleman as well as Anner Herrera and the journalist Víctor Ticay, for the fabricated crimes of “propagation of false news.” and “undermining national integrity.”
According to the Mechanism for the Recognition of Political Prisoners, in Nicaragua there are at least 89 people currently deprived of their liberty for political reasons, but they note there could be more, because many cases are still under investigation or because their relatives are afraid to file complaints.