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Argentinian Prosecutor Had Drafted Arrest Warrant For The President Before His Death

Drafts for the arrest of President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner and her foreign minister were found in a trash can at Alberto Nisman's house.

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Alberto Nisman, a prosecutor who was found dead at his home on Jan. 18, had drafted an arrest warrant for Argentinian President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner, an investigator said Tuesday, the New York Times reported.

Nisman was set to reveal details about his years-long investigation into a 1994 terror attack on a Jewish center in Buenos Aires when he was found dead in his home with a gunshot wound on Jan. 18.

The 26-page arrest warrant draft, found in the garbage in Nisman's house, accused Fernandez and other officials of deliberately shielding Iranian links to the bombing at the Jewish community center.

The warrant, drafted in June 2014 — more than six months before Nisman publicly accused the president of conspiring with Iran — also called for the arrest of the country's foreign minister, Héctor Timerman, and Congressman Andres Larroque.

During a press conference on Monday, Fernandez's cabinet chief, Jorge Capitanich, tore up the Spanish-language newspaper Clarín's story on the arrest warrant.

Viviana Fein, the prosecutor investigating Nisman's death, confirmed the existence of the warrant on Tuesday, saying her initial denial of it had been a mistake. Fein said the error was unintentional and that she had not not pressured by the government.

She also said she had planned two weeks vacation, starting Feb. 18, and will leave the investigation in the hands of two other prosecutors, according to the Buenos Aires Herald. She said she made the travel plans in December.

Her colleague Ricardo Sáenz was critical of the government, saying it wasn't letting Fein do her work "in peace."

"She has her retirement agreed, she could go now but she will not. If she goes I do not know who will replace her," he said in the Herald. "I do not know if they want her out, but they do want to make her uncomfortable."

The discovery was the latest twist in the investigation into Nisman's death.

Investigators initially said "all signs" pointed to suicide, an assertion that sparked widespread skepticism and scrutiny, particularly among friends and family. Investigators came under even more pressure after it was revealed that Security Secretary Sergio Berni arrived at Nisman's apartment before police.

Then mid-January, President Fernandez reversed that narrative, calling Nisman's death "the suicide that (I am convinced) was no suicide." The government later blamed rogue agents from its own intelligence services for the prosecutor's death.

There were also the discovery of a previously unknown hall passage to Nisman's apartment, and the disclosure that a security camera in Nisman's building was not working at the time of the shooting.

But in late January, the case took another turn when investigators said tests on the gun only had trace amounts of Nisman's own DNA.

Tasneem Nashrulla is a reporter for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Tasneem Nashrulla at tasneem.nashrulla@buzzfeed.com.

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