Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez Denies Obstruction of Justice Allegations
Last week she requested the resignation of former Justice Secretary Dennise Longo Quiñones "for improperly intervening in a federal investigation.”
After requesting the resignation of Justice Secretary Dennise Longo Quiñones last week, Puerto Rico Governor Wanda Vázquez said in a press conference on Tuesday that she has "nothing to fear" from allegations that she obstructed justice by firing Quiñones.
Vázquez claimed she wanted Quiñones fired "for improperly intervening in a federal investigation" of possible Medicaid fraud between 2014 and 2019, during which time Quiñones's mother was one of the people in charge of the health department. But according to local media outlets in Puerto Rico, Váquez's request for the resignation was actually motivated by Quiñones launching an investigation into the mishandling of emergency supplies.
Following Vázquez's press conference on Tuesday, Quiñones said in a press release that she informed a special independent prosecutor panel in March that the governor and other officials were being investigated for their handling of the supplies. Vázquez told reports that she was unaware of that investigation.
Jenniffer González, who is Puerto Rico's non-voting representative in the United States Congress, said on Monday that the allegations are "very serious" and must be properly investigated. Earlier this year, Puerto Ricans called for Vázquez's resignation after the emergency supplies were first discovered. Vázquez replaced former Governor Ricardo Rosselló last July after a series of mass protests surrounding derogatory messages sent by Rosselló and other associates.