Advertisement
A picture of the prosecutor Alberto Nisman at a rally in Buenos Aires on Jan. 21, 2015. Nisman, who was investigating a 1994 attack on a Jewish center, was found dead three days earlier. (Photo: Rodrigo Abd/Associated Press)

Alberto Nisman, an Argentinian prosecutor, was expected to present stunning evidence: that the country’s president had covered up Iran’s role in a terrorist bombing two decades earlier.

But hours before he could make his case to lawmakers on Jan. 18, 2015, he was found dead in his home with a bullet fired into the right side of his skull from point-blank range. The death was quickly ruled a suicide by investigators. But many in the country, and internationally, were skeptical.

Now a new report by a team of forensic experts at the federal Argentine Gendarmie should re-ignite the controversy. The investigators have found that Nisman was drugged, beaten, subdued and then shot by two attackers who then staged the crime scene.

The release of the report by the Gendamerie to the federal judge and prosecutor who are investigating the nearly 3-year-old equivocal death case was heralded by multiple Argentine news outlets, most notably La Nacion newspaper.

A full toxicology report indicates Nisman had ketamine, a sedative, in his blood, according to the report.

A forensic reconstruction of the fatal shot was then created by the Gendarmerie using the ballistics and blood spatter at the scene.

Nisman was put in a kneeling position, and held by one of the attackers. The other assassin stood behind the prosecutor and manipulated the prosecutor’s hand to fire the gun into his own head. The bullet went from the right side through Nisman’s head, according to reports.

But the prosecutor’s body was moved to make it look like he had shot himself, fallen and lay in cadaveric spasm, according to the report. However, the Bersa .22-caliber handgun was underneath his body, and not in his hand, at the time he was discovered, hours after his death, the report adds.

The report also indicates that some activity on Nisman’s computer and cellphone from the night of the death was deleted from the records.

The report, which was the product of dozens of Gendarmerie experts, appears to open the door for the prosecutor to reconsider a person of interest: Diego Lagomarsino, an information technology specialist who worked for Nisman.

Lagomarsino has admitted to authorities he had visited the Buenos Aires apartment twice the day before Nisman’s body was found.

Lagomarsino also was the owner of the .22-caliber handgun found at the scene, and which issued the fatal shot. Lagomarsino has admitted owning the gun, but has said he lent the firearm to Nisman for his protection.

Nisman’s expected testimony on the date of his death concerned the 1994 bombing of the AMIA Jewish Center. That explosion killed 85 and wounded hundreds. Nisman had stated he would publicly present the evidence that then-Argentine President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner covered up the official role of Iran in the bombing. Nisman had actually filed a complaint against Kirchner just five days before his body was found in his bathroom.

The death investigation was moved to the federal courts last year, indicating the suicide determination was being reconsidered. 

Advertisement
Advertisement