Vice-President Cristina Fernández de Kirchner said goodbye to Cuba on Monday, where she travelled to visit her daughter, Florencia, who is undergoing medical treatment on the Caribbean island. Before returning to Buenos Aires, however, the former president shared an image of the two of them in Havana — the first photo of the young filmmaker released to the public in almost a year.
Fernández de Kirchner faces a number of corruption trials, with two of them listing her children, Máximo and Florencia, as defendants.
In the so-called 'Hotesur case,' the family members face money-laundering allegations. The investigation is exploring an alleged corruption ring focused on a public works graft and the fraudulent rental of hotels rooms involving Kirchnerite-linked businessman Lázaro Báez.
Prosecutors believe the Kirchner-owned Hotesur firm was used to launder money and pay bribes, through a corporate, economic and accounting structure that allowed the parties involved to launder illicit funds. The hypothesis of the investigation is that Báez lent the Kirchners money to buy the hotels and used Valle Miter to exploit them as mechanisms to launder money. According to the casefile, a total of 86 million pesos were paid by Valle Mitre SRL to Hotesur SA for the payment of rental fees for rooms at various Kirchner family hotels, namely Alto Calafate, Las Dunas and La Aldea.
Fernández de Kirchner alleges her daughter's health has suffered as a result of the "political persecution" she is subject to as the daughter of Néstor and Cristina Kirchner. The former head of state also alleges the charges against the Kirchner family are part of a broader plot to weaken them politically.
Court No. 5 granted Florencia authorisation to remain in Cuba back in April, initially on a temporary basis, after judges approved her request to undergo medical treatment there for a number of conditions. Those include depression, lymphedema and low body weight, according to her defence team. Other reports made public by her mother on social networks indicate she is also suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder.
Camilo Vaca Narvaja, Florencia Kirchner's former partner and the father of their child, said back in July that the film director was experiencing "a very strong depression."
"Florencia is not well. It is a complex picture that has a psychiatric and psychological treatment and accompaniment. She has lymphedema, which she had during pregnancy, post-traumatic stress and a very strong depression, which has been aggravated by all the judicial and media persecution she has lived through," he added.
Zulema Menem, the daughter of former president Carlos Menem, has previously defended Florencia Kirchner, saying that she is "accused of something that has not been proven."
"The children have nothing to do with it. I had a hard time [too]. The exhibition was very hard," said Menem during an interview with the FM Milenium radio station.
According to experts tasked by the courts, who reviewed the clinical history presented by Kirchner's legal team back in April, she could undergo the same treatment programme in Argentina that she is receiving in Cuba. Nevertheless, all requests to remain in Cuba to date have been approved.
At the request of the court, she must present herself at Argentina's Embassy in Havana every 15 days.