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Honduras former first lady sentenced to 14 years for fraud charges

By Harold Lemon Tubiano Published Sep 22, 2022 7:46 pm

A Honduran court sentenced former first lady Lady Rosa Elena Bonilla de Lobo to 14 years in prison on Sept. 21 on fraud and corruption charges. 

"The former first lady Rosa Elena Bonilla has been sentenced to 14 years and one month in prison for the crimes of continued fraud and misappropriation of public funds destined for social programs," said spokesman Carlos Silva.

Bonilla was reported to have spent 12.2 million lempiras (around P29 million) meant for impoverished children on credit card payments, real estate, and her children's schooling during her husband Porfirio Lobo's term from 2010 to 2014, according to the public ministry. 

Despite being convicted, her lawyer, Juan Berganza, said he will appeal the sentence within 20 days of conviction. 

It is the second time Bonilla faced the charges after being held in custody for 58 years due to embezzlement but was later annulled by the Honduran Supreme Court in early 2020 due to inconsistencies in the process. 

As reported by the Washington Examiner, Bonilla's family was associated with more controversies after their term. In July, her 23-year-old son Said Omar Lobo Bonilla was ambushed and killed along with three others by gunmen while they were leaving a club.

Her private secretary, Saul Escobar, was also convicted to seven years and three months on Wednesday for the same issue.