The trial into the alleged aggressions against assistant Leonor Cipriano by Polícia Judiciária (PJ) inspectors is back in the court of Faro on Wednesday and the start of the session is scheduled for 9.30 a.m.
“There was never solid proof produced in court that Gonçalo Amaral had any knowledge of criminal actions. I never noticed that anything whatsoever was proved about this accusation”, António Cabrita told Lusa Agency.
In this judicial case, former PJ inspector Gonçalo Amaral stands accused of the crime of false testimony and omission of denunciation.
According to António Cabrita, the Public Ministry (PM) used “two weights and two scales” when it accused Gonçalo Amaral of omission of denunciation and did not also accuse the director of the Prison of Odemira of the same crime.
“The director said she found Leonor Cipriano with lesions and had photographs taken, but the first thing that she should have done is to demand an inspection by the Forensics Institute in order to verify the lesions [of Leonor Cipriano] and to describe them”, the lawyer argued.
The 13th session of the trial over the alleged aggressions against Leonor Cipriano should be occupied by closing arguments, but only if none of the arguidos wishes to make a statement to the court.
“I’m prepared for closing arguments, the preparation is constant, I just need to revisit the witnesses’ statements and to check the contradictions, but it all depends on whether the arguidos wish to make a statement or not”, Gonçalo Amaral’s lawyer told Lusa, recalling that during the previous session, the former PJ inspector publicly expressed his will to speak.
Closing arguments begin with the Public Ministry’s prosecutor, followed by assistant Leonor Cipriano’s lawyer, Marcos Aragão, and by the assistant from the Lawyers’ Order, Rodrigo Santiago, and only then do the defence lawyers start their final arguments about the case.
Lusa tried to contact assistant Leonor Cipriano’s lawyer, Marcos Aragão, but it was not possible.
The process of alleged aggressions against Leonor Cipriano by PJ inspectors is related to the so-called “Joana case” that dates back to the 12th of September 2004, the day when the little girl, aged eight, disappeared from the village of Figueira, Portimão, Algarve.
The Public Ministry’s accusations against five Judiciária inspectors and former inspectors appeared following the interrogation sessions at the PJ in Faro in 2004, a time when Leonor appeared at the Prison of Odemira, where she was under preventive custody, with lesions on her face and body.
Three inspectors stand accused of the crime of torture, one stands accused of the crime of false testimony and omission to denounce, and a fifth one stands accused of the crime of forgery of a document.
Joana’s mother, Leonor Cipriano, and her uncle, João Cipriano (both siblings) were condemned by the Supreme Court of Justice to 16 years in prison each, over the crimes of homicide and concealment of the child’s cadaver.
source: Diário Digital / Lusa, 21.04.2009