Nicaraguan opposition leader Suazo sentenced to 10 years in prison

The sentence was handed down by Judge Ulisa Tapia Silva in a court in the capital, Managua. He was sentenced to five years in prison for conspiracy to undermine national integrity and an additional five years for spreading false news, as well as a fine equivalent to around $1,500, the group said.

The CENIDH, where Suazo served as director, condemned the sentence as unjust. He called the hearing a “judicial farce” and claimed authorities had repeatedly violated “due process guarantees”.

In Nicaragua, trials of opposition leaders are usually held behind closed doors, without the presence of journalists. Only Suazo’s defense lawyer was present at the hearing, CENIDH said.

Suazo’s defense attorney, Maynor Curtis, said he would appeal the conviction.

Police arrested Suazo on May 18 this year at his parents’ home in the western town of Masaya, which saw widespread anti-government protests four years ago.

Suazo was detained for nearly a year in 2018 for taking part in the protests, but was released in 2019 under an amnesty law that pardoned protesters.