$25,000 is all it takes to bribe the president of Honduras. With this payment, suspected drug trafficker Geovanny Fuentes allegedly bought protection. Because of his association with the president, he became bulletproof, free to do as he wanted.
The bribes were paid between 2013 and 2014, to the current president, Juan Orlando Hernández. This was explained in the opening arguments of a federal trial against Geovanny Fuentes, in New York.
The prosecutor has a witness who worked for a rice company that was used to launder money. He will tell the jury about how the president told Fuentes “that he would transport so much cocaine to the United States that they would put the drugs down the noses of the gringos.”
The defense attorney tried to discredit the testimony based on the fact that he has a lot to gain and a little to lose, as he hopes for asylum in the U.S. in exchange of his testimony. She also told the jury not to believe the testimony they’ll hear from Leonel Rivera, former leader of the Honduran cartel Los Cachiro, because he is “one of the worst murderers on the face of the earth.”
The president’s brother was found guilty of large-scale drug trafficking in New York in 2019. The prosecutor claims he was an intermediary between Fuentes and the president.