Miami, Florida, U.S.A.- Estlund Law has successfully obtained the removal of three Red Notices for our client, Arturo Escobar. Mr. Escobar was accused of bribery, organized crime, and money laundering in Ecuador and Panama. 

Corruption in Ecuador causes politically motivated prosecutions

Mr. Escobar’s case arose from a political dispute between two of Ecuador’s former presidents. After a journalist published a series of articles claiming to have uncovered corruption at the highest levels of government about Petroecuador, the country’s national oil company, then-President Rafael Correa faced pressure to show that he did not tolerate corruption. He began a politically motivated prosecution to address the scandal in 2016. While there appeared to have been credible bribery allegations against some individuals, he used the prosecution to insist that other, specific individuals be prosecuted, even where there was evidence of their innocence. There was also evidence that he shielded his allies from prosecution and steered the prosecution away from himself. As a result of the biased investigation and prosecution, many individuals, including Mr. Escobar, were prosecuted for alleged bribery or conspiracy to commit bribery. 

Ecuadorian officials tried Mr. Escobar in his absence. He never received the requested evidence that could have aided in his defense in his trial. Unsurprisingly, Mr. Escobar was convicted despite the lack of due process and the absence of evidence implicating him. 


Estlund Law has significant experience removing politically motivated Red Notices. Ms. Estlund used that expertise to build the case for removing Mr. Escobar’s three outstanding notices, focusing on the lack of evidence provided by the prosecution, the political motivation behind the case, and the human rights violations suffered by Mr. Escobar and others in the case. 

After reviewing the firm’s removal request, INTERPOL’s Commission for the Control of INTERPOL’s Files (CCF) found all three Red Notices in Mr. Escobar’s name uncompliant with INTERPOL’s rules. The organization recognized that although criminal elements were present in this case, the predominant factor was political motivation. 

Mr. Escobar said after the case was resolved, “We can’t express with words how grateful and joyful we feel with this resolution. We want to thank you and all your team for your amazing work, kindness, and understanding.”

Ms. Estlund notes that this case was specifically characterized by the dedication of Mr. Escobar’s family, particularly his wife, to ensure that the matter was fully and fairly resolved so their family could resume a normal, productive life.