BUENOS AIRES — A judge yesterday barred former president Carlos Menem from leaving Argentina ahead of his trial over alleged obstruction of the investigation into the deadly bombing of a Jewish community centre in 1994.
The attack, which killed 85 people, was the deadliest ever on Argentine soil, and also left about 300 people injured.
The Centre for Judicial Information, the official mouthpiece of Argentina's federal justice system, said the travel ban applies to "anyone being prosecuted next month for crimes related to the investigation into the attack on the Argentine Jewish Mutual Association (AMIA)."
"We bar anyone being prosecuted in connection with irregularities in the investigation of that attack on AMIA from leaving the country," justice officials said.
About a dozen defendants, including Menem, as well as the former head of intelligence, Hugo Anzorreguy, face charges that they took part in a cover-up of the probe into the attack.
An August 6 trial date has been set in the case.
The bombing made headlines again after the suspicious death earlier this year of a prosecutor who had launched a probe into the affair.
Alberto Nisman died mysteriously on January 18 as he prepared to publicly accuse President Cristina Kirchner of shielding high-ranking Iranians suspected of ordering the attack.
Officials originally ruled Nisman's death a suicide, but his family insists he was the victim of murder. — AFP