Former president of the San Tomean parliament denies having benefited from justice

The former president of the parliament of São Tomé, Delfim Neves, exonerated in the case of the assault on the military barracks, last Saturday repudiated claims of the Prime Minister that he had benefited from justice, saying there was “a thorough investigation” and “found nothing” that would incriminate him.
The statements of the head of the São Toméan government, Patrice Trovoada, are “unreasonable and to some extent defamatory, because Delfim Neves did not benefit from anything,” the former president of the National Assembly of São Tomé and Príncipe (2018-2022) told media.
“It’s in the records, the Public Prosecutor’s Office and the Judicial Police searched for Delfim Neves’ life. In all the documents they seized in the search they conducted of my residence, vehicles, and offices, they found nothing that could indicate my involvement in this case. They also went to bank accounts, including with a rogatory letter sent to Portuguese banking institutions,” he commented.
“After this thorough investigation, which was Patrice Trovoada’s wish, the Public Prosecutor’s Office analyzed it together with the Judiciary Police, both national and Portuguese, and they concluded that the case should be closed as far as my part is concerned. He cannot in any way speak of me having benefited”, emphasized Delfim Neves.
Patrice Trovoada considered, this Friday, that the rigor of the judicial system benefited Delfim Neves in the case of the assault on the Armed Forces barracks, which occurred last November, in which he was a defendant.
“Delfim Neves, as all the people of Sao Tome, must recognize that Justice is independent, that there is no meddling by the Government in matters of justice and that the rigor of the Law, in such a serious case, has meant that some allegations have not had the quality required to go to trial, which allows, in the case of Delfim Neves, that he has benefited from the dismissal,” said the Prime Minister.
Speaking to reporters on the sidelines of his participation in a conference in Lisbon, the Prime Minister added: “The evidence is there and we cannot refute it. Unfortunately, four important witnesses died, and we have to conform and respect Justice, and that’s the way things are, and that’s good, so we are all grateful that the justice system in São Tomé and Príncipe, and the Public Prosecution Service, have given guarantees to everyone, and when there is a doubt, it is normal that the defendant benefits from the doubt”.
Patrice Trovoada was reacting in this way to the indictment of ten defendants, by the Public Ministry (MP), on Thursday, about the assault on the military barracks, last November 25, in which four people died in military custody. In the same decision, the MP filed, for lack of evidence against the “initial suspicions”, the case regarding seven defendants, including Delfim Neves.
The former president of the National Assembly was arrested by the military in the early hours of that day, after having been allegedly identified as financier of the attack, and was later indicted.