Guatemala Congress swears in Alejandro Maldonado as President

Guatemala’s congress has sworn in a former judge Alejandro Maldonado as president while his predecessor Otto Perez Molina’s has appeared in court over corruption allegations just hours after resigning.

Maldonado, a 79-year-old conservative who only became vice president in May, will serve out the rest of Molina’s term, handing over on January 14, 2016.

Separately yesterday, a judge – citing a flight risk – ordered Perez to be held in prison while hearings over his alleged role in a customs-corruption scandal continue.

The attorney general’s office has said it plans to bring charges against Perez for illicit association, taking bribes and customs fraud, as the hearing continued today.

Congress had earlier voted unanimously to accept Perez’s resignation, which he submitted just before midnight on Wednesday after politicians stripped him of his presidential immunity.

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