Ver Angola


Supreme denies parole to former Transport Minister

The Supreme Court denied the request for parole by former Transport Minister Augusto Tomás, considering that “the release of this type of criminals halfway through their sentence is not at all compatible with social peace”.


Augusto Tomás was sentenced by the Supreme Court in August 2019 to 14 years in prison, within the scope of the trial of the well-known "Case of the National Council of Shippers" (CNC), a sentence that was reduced by the plenary of the Supreme Court to seven years and a month in prison.

Augusto Tomás' defense requested parole because he had reached half the sentence imposed on him, and the Directorate-General of the Prison Service gave a favorable opinion on the "behavior of the defendant while serving the sentence".

The former Minister of Transport has been detained since the 21st of September 2018, so he reached the middle of his sentence on the 2nd of Sbril this year.

In his sentence, Counselor Judge Daniel Modesto Geraldes mentioned that the Public Prosecutor's Office gave an unfavorable opinion "because it understood that the defendant did not reveal any regrets", but, as he argued, "on the contrary, he appealed the decision to all instances of appeal, in addition to not having expressed a willingness to voluntarily repair the damage caused to the State through the compensation to which he was also sentenced".

"It should be noted first of all, that we cannot agree with the grounds invoked by the worthy magistrate of the M.P. when referring that the defendant did not show regret, so much so that he used all instances of appeal. This is because regret is a mitigating circumstance that relevant for the purpose of measuring the sentence and never as a determining factor for the granting of parole, for all that we have previously explained", reads the sentence.

The counselor judge stresses that he does not understand the reasons that led the Public Prosecutor's Office, in the investigation phase, not to request "the seizure of assets that would allow it to cover the damage caused to the State, in the event of being convicted, as it happened".

"Of course, the Court is not subject to the opinions of the M.P. or the prison services, but we cannot express our astonishment at the aforementioned legal opinion, which is not understandable for those whose function is to supervise legality", stresses the judge. adviser to the Constitutional Court.

For Daniel Modesto Geraldes, despite the favorable opinion of the Prison Service, "the fact that these are very serious crimes, whose nature is not reduced to merely material, but has a component that touches on values ​​as important as life, physical integrity, health and education, it does not seem to us that the fulfillment of half the sentence is enough to create such a positive prognosis judgment, nor is it capable of satisfying the purposes of general and special prevention".

The sentence considers that serving three years and six months in prison "is too lenient for such serious conduct, which has made it impossible for Angola and many other countries worldwide to have economic growth that enables executives to create better living conditions. to its people, namely in terms of health and education and, perhaps, the cause of the high rate of mortality and hunger in our country".

"That said, the release of this type of criminals halfway through their sentence is not at all compatible with the social peace and public tranquility that is required for the granting of parole", argues the judge.

"We will say more, that we consider the penalties too lenient and it will be time for the legislator to look at this crime more consciously, either in the penal frameworks that should be more severe, or in that type of benefits that should be verified that were fulfilled 5/6 the penalty, to avoid the feeling so often heard by the people, on behalf of whom we administer justice, that "after all, crime pays", highlights Daniel Modesto Geraldes.

Augusto Tomás was Minister of Transport between 2008 and 2017, and responded in court for the crimes of embezzlement, violation of the rules of execution of the budget plan in a continuous way, abuse of power in a continuous way and economic participation.

The former Minister of Transport was acquitted of the crimes of money laundering, criminal association and the crime of participating in a business, for lack of evidence.


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