Pedro Pablo Kuczynski’s vice presidential candidate Martin Vizcarra is considering pressing charges against Keiko Fujimori for defamation.
The former governor of Moquegua said at a press conference that Fujimori may have broken the law when she said that he was held in contempt of court in 2013. Fujimori also alleged during the debate that Vizcarra had illegally acquired land in Puno.
“We are evaluating formal charges with our legal advisers,” Vizcarra told El Comercio. “[On the other hand], 12 days from an important election we do not want give a reason for [Fujimori] to seem like a victim.”
Both cases absolved Vizcarra of any wrongdoing years ago. Fujimori’s attack against Kuczynski’s running mate was widely seen as an effort to distract the public’s attention from recent reports that her Popular Force party chairman was being investigated for money laundering by the DEA in connection with a major drug trafficker.
“I do not lie or invent anything,” Fujimori told reporters when asked about a possible defamation charge. “He said at some point that he was declared in contempt. And regarding the allegations against him, the documents speak for themselves.”
Vizcarra compared Fujimori’s tactics to those of former President Alberto Fujimori’s intelligence chief, Vladimiro Montesinos.
“Mrs. Fujimori used half of her time [during the debate] to make allegations completely disconnected from reality. She lied repeatedly,” Vizcarra told Altavoz. “We thought that style was in the past, but it reminds us of the rhetoric of Montesinos, who through leaflets and lies defamed [his political opponents]. Mrs. Fujimori is reviving that.”
Defamation is a crime in Peru, punishable by up to two years in prison and fines equivalent to four months’ pay.
The latest Ipsos poll shows 41% of Peru’s voters support Fujimori, compared to 38% for Kuczynski. Peru’s runoff vote is scheduled for June 5.
Keiko Fujimori niega haber mentido sobre acusaciones contra Vizcarra (Andina)
Vizcarra: El discurso de Keiko retoma la retórica de Vladimiro Montesinos (Altavoz)
Vizcarra evalúa denunciar por difamación a Keiko Fujimori (El Comercio)