Argentine prosecutor renews case against country's president

Argentine prosecutor renews case against country's president
Alberto Nisman, the Argentine prosecutor who was investigating the 1994 bombing of a Jewish community center before he was found dead last month, shown in May 2013. (Natacha Pisarenko / Associated Press)

A prosecutor who took over a high-profile case against Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner after the special prosecutor in the case was found dead has formally renewed the investigation into whether the government covered up details of a 1994 bombing, the Associated Press reported.

Prosecutor Gerardo Pollicita stepped into the investigation of a bombing of a Jewish community center after special prosecutor Alberto Nisman was found dead in his Buenos Aires apartment last month, days after publicly accusing the president, Foreign Minister Hector Timerman and other officials of a cover-up.

The bombing was the deadliest terrorist attack in Argentina's history, killing 85 people and injuring at least 150.

In a report he gave to a judge five days before his death, Nisman alleged that Fernandez had secretly reached a deal to prevent prosecution of former Iranian officials. He said the deal may have been made in exchange for favorable trade terms.

Fernandez has repeatedly denied the charges.

An initial autopsy concluded that Nisman had committed suicide, which Fernandez herself said she was convinced was not the case. In a post on her website, the president threw out other possible scenarios, including one that placed the blame on rogue elements of the government's Secretariat of Intelligence, which Nisman had spoken to during the investigation.

Pollicita will present his finding to judge Daniel Rafecas, the federal magistrate assigned to the case and the judge will decide whether to dismiss it or send it on to trial, according to the Associated Press.

Early Friday, presidential spokesman Anibal Fernandez said moving the case forward was a "clear maneuver to destabilize democracy" but that ultimately "it has no legal value. It does not matter," the Associated Press reported her saying.