The former interim president of Bolivia, Jeanine Añez, was sentenced on Friday June 10 to ten years in prison for leading a coup against her left-wing predecessor, Evo Morales, in 2019.

The La Paz Court of First Instance decided on a “conviction” of a “ten-year sentence” of imprisonment, to be served in a women’s prison in La Paz, three months after the start of the trial and fifteen months after the placement in pre-trial detention of the former right-wing head of state.

Ms. Añez, 54, was convicted “for the offenses of unconstitutional resolutions and dereliction of duty”.

“I did what I had to do”

In her last statement, she claimed the court had “ruled out” evidence to deny an overthrow of Mr. Morales, who spent fourteen years in office.

“I didn’t make it a point to become president, but I did what I had to do. I assumed the responsibility of the presidency out of obligation, according to the established Constitution,” Jeanine Anez told the judge. She had announced that she would appeal a possible conviction: “We will not stop there, we will go before international justice”.

Jeanine Añez was tried for her actions as a senator, before assuming the interim presidency, from November 12, 2019. She thus succeeded Evo Morales, two days after the latter’s resignation, in a context of strong social unrest. Opponents have accused Mr Morales of committing fraud in the October election that year to secure a fourth consecutive term until 2025.