Ecuador prosecutors say they will request an Interpol international arrest warrant for former Foreign Minister Ricardo Patiño “within a matter of days.” Patiño is the 10th official from the government of former president Rafael Correa who faces criminal prosecution in Ecuador. Correa, who lives in Belgium, is one of the 10.
Patiño left the country Wednesday, April 17, hours before a judge ordered that he be jailed on charges he attempted to incite violence during a speech last year in Latacunga. The judge’s order was for “preventive detention” while the case is investigated. Patiño is currently in Mexico City.
The arrest warrant request to Interpol, the international police cooperation agency, will detail the charges against Patiño. Federal prosecutors have requested Interpol arrest warrants for six other former officials living outside of Ecuador, including Correa, but have been denied on three occasions.
In addition to Patiño and Correa, Ecuador’s other fugitive officials are Pedro Delgado, Ramiro González, Sofía Espín, Walter Solís, Pablo Romero, Carlos Ochoa, Fernando Alvarado and Carlos Pólit.
In social media posts from Mexico, Patiño claims the charges against him amount to “political persecution and are the actions of a corrupt legal system.”
It is unclear if Patiño will remain in Mexico. One supporter Tweeted Saturday that he may travel to Miami where he has family.