Nicaraguan dictator Daniel Ortega freezes bank accounts of Catholic dioceses, priests in coordinated religious attack

The bank accounts of several Catholic priests and dioceses in Nicaragua have been forcibly frozen by communist dictator Daniel Ortega.

Martha Patricia Molina, a Nicaraguan lawyer and researcher, says the bank freeze represents "one more arbitrary action of the dictatorship against the Nicaraguan Catholic Church."

"It's something that is going to be common for more priests and even laypeople," Molina added in a statement.

Since the bank freezes were implemented, Nicaraguan police have reportedly begun investigating the priests and dioceses in question for alleged money laundering.

"Although they were not charged at the time their accounts were frozen, the priests are being investigated and possibly in the future they will be charged with the crime of money laundering, which is what the police are investigating at this time," Molina said.

UN group says Ortega regime guilty of "crimes against humanity"

This "attempt to cripple the Catholic Church," as LifeSiteNews describes the situation, includes the frozen bank account of the Diocese of Estelí, managed by Bishop Rolando Álvarez Lagos of Matagalpa, who was condemned to 26 years in prison on charges of being "a traitor to the country."

Álvarez's' alleged crimes involve "undermining national security and sovereignty, spreading fake news through information technology, obstructing an official in the performance of his duties," as well as "aggravated disobedience or contempt of authority."

Reports claim that Ortega "took advantage of Álvarez's link to extend the order to freeze bank accounts to the Diocese of Matagalpa." From there, the freeze was then "extended to the Archdiocese of Managua, and then to the national level, while the Government has not said what the cause is or what it is investigating," to quote the Havanna Times.

On May 27, the Nicaraguan National Police published a statement about the matter accusing the Catholic Church of money laundering and other crimes. Some human rights advocates argue that these accusations have no basis in reality.

The situation has become so severe in Nicaragua that the United Nations (UN)-established Group of Human Rights Experts on Nicaragua (GHREN) declared that the Ortega regime is guilty of "crimes against humanity." These include acts of torture, extrajudicial executions, arbitrary detention, deportation, rape, sexual violence, and suppression of political, social, and religious freedoms, according to reports.

Former Nicaraguan presidential candidate Sebastian Chamorro, in a testimony offered during a congressional hearing in the United States, says the Ortega regime is hellbent on silencing the Catholic Church because it stands as a voice of justice against Ortega's crimes and oppression.

"Why Ortega's war against the Church?" asked Chamorro, who himself was kidnapped by police at his house in the middle of the night in front of his wife and daughter. Chamorro, by the way, ended up sharing a prison cell with Bishop Álvarez.

"The reason is simple. After putting all the opposition in jail, repressing all forms of protests, the dictator had to deal with the last standing voice defending freedom, peace, and human dignity," Chamorro further revealed at the hearing.

"Ortega had to silence the voice of the Church in order to impose his message of hate and violence."

One commenter who chimed in on the news wrote that none of this would be happening were it not for the "Liberation Theology Catholics who helped usher communism into South America." In other words, it was a left-leaning faction of Catholics that apparently brought tyrannical regimes like Ortega's into places like Nicaragua where it is becoming increasingly unlawful to be a Catholic. 

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