According to an English translation of a report in the leading daily newspaper, Suara Timor Lorosae, yesterday (13/12/2012) not only did the Court of Appeal uphold the decision of the Dili District Court regarding the conviction, it also increased the original sentence from 3 and a half years to five years (although earlier reports had stated that the original sentence was 5 years).
The Dili District Court found the former Justice Minister guilty of corruption in the administration of a government project tender that cost the state $97,350.
Ms Lobato was a member of the Social Democratic Party in the IV Constitutional Government (the Parliamentary Majority Alliance) headed by resistance leader and Prime Minister, Xanana Gusmao.
The Social Democratic Party was wiped off the political scene in East Timor in the 2012 legislative election.
When the press released the allegations of corruption, she attempted to suppress the media when she filed court proceedings against the newspaper alleging that she had been defamed.
Ms Lobato is a qualified lawyer. Her full name is Lucia Maria Brandao Freitas Lobato and she was born on 7 November 1965 in Likisa.
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Author: Warren L. Wright BA LLB. References: Suara Timor Lorosae 13 December 2012