Argentina’s defense minister, Oscar Aguad, was denounced on Monday for the disappearance of the submarine ARA San Juan with 44 crew on board in the South Atlantic a little over four months ago.
The complaint was lodged by lawyer Luis Tagliapietra, father of lieutenant of Lieutenant Alejandro Damián Tagliapietra, and with the endorsement of the majority of the relatives of other crew members for the alleged crimes of breach of the duties of public official, abandonment of person and betrayal to the homeland
“It is clear that the (defense) ministry has hidden and hidden important information about what happened,” Tagliapietra told The Associated Press after the presentation in the federal courts of the city of Buenos Aires. “We can not afford to be lazy. We want to know the truth and we will do everything that is necessary. ”
The TR-1700 electric diesel submarine of German manufacture and in operations since the 80s disappeared last November 15 when it sailed from Ushuaia, in the extreme south of Argentina, to its base in Mar del Plata, 400 kilometers south of Buenos Aires. Aires, after participating in a training exercise.
The Navy ruled out the survival of the crew.
An unprecedented operation with the participation of 18 nations was deployed to search the submarine without results. Russia is today the only foreign country that collaborates in the search in an area of about 4 thousand square kilometers. The government of Mauricio Macri, in turn, offers a reward of about five million dollars for data on the location of the submarine.
“It is evident Aguad’s responsibility in the disappearance of the ARA San Juan and its 44 crew members because he was aware of the state of unseaworthiness of the same,” the text of the complaint states.
He added that the official had an official report of January 2017 in which the Navy “warned about 33 items to be repaired and / or reviewed, the majority with priority one in dry dock due to the seriousness of the same”.
For the complainants, sending the submarine to the sea “was an evident act of abandonment of person … authorizing this operation and knowing the state of the ship”.
The day he disappeared, the commander of the ARA San Juan reported that he had suffered a breakdown due to the entry of water into the batteries through the snorkel – a device through which the submersible takes air from the surface to operate its engines – but that the incident had been resolved. Hours later an explosion was recorded near where the ship had been lost contact.
The government and the Navy have ruled out the possibility that the submarine has been the object of an attack by a foreign fleet in an event linked to its mission to detect the presence of vessels in the illegal fishing zone.
After hearing the complaint against him, Aguad said that “the issue is very complex and delicate, not only his disappearance or shipwreck, but also from relatives. We’re trying to find the submarine but it’s difficult. ”
Source: El Imparcial