CARACAS Ė Psychiatrist and former university chancellor Edmundo Chirinos, who says that President Hugo Chavez was his patient, asked the Venezuelan head of state for a pardon to avoid serving the rest of a 20-year prison sentence for homicide.
ďIíve been detained for more than a year in Yare III (prison), in a cell unusually inadequate for a person of 77, very sick,Ē wrote Chirinos in an open letter to Chavez and Attorney General Luisa Ortega Diaz.
The well-known psychiatrist and academic, who was also a presidential candidate in the 1988 elections, was sentenced on Sept. 29, 2010, for the July murder of one of his patients, 19-year-old college student Roxana Vargas.
In remarks to journalists on the eve of his trial, Chirinosí statements that he had treated Chavez and former Presidents Rafael Caldera and Jaime Lusinchi aroused media interest in his case.
Among the evidence assembled against Chirinos was the finding of the victimís blood in his psychiatric office, as well as a blog post by Vargas in which she gave details about an alleged romantic relationship with the septuagenarian psychiatrist.