Gunpowder found on Nisman weapon, but not his hands

Marcy Oster

BUENOS AIRE S, Argentina (JTA) — Experts confirmed that three laboratory analyses performed on the gun believed to have killed the AMIA special prosecutor Alberto Nisman tested positive for traces of gunpowder residue.

The .22 caliber Bersa that killed Nisman tested positive for first time, in the three electronic scans performed at the Scientific Laboratory of Tax Investigation, in the northern province of Salta. The tests detected antimony, barium and lead.

This new information released Monday is in contrast to a test performed in February on the prosecutor hands, which detected no gunpowder residue.

The result seems to negate the possibility that Nisman committed suicide, and support the theory that someone else shot Nisman, or that someone cleaned the prosecutor’s hand. Some experts also said Monday that if the environmental conditions of the tests had slight changes the results could be different.

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In July forensic pathologist Cyril Wech analyzed the case and said he believes that Nisman likely was murdered.

Prosecutor Viviana Fein has not yet released a final ruling. “I cannot determine for the moment whether it was a suicide or a homicide,” she said on March 6, when she convened the authors of the independent forensic report to examine their evidence. Her final ruling likely will be released after the October presidential elections.

Nisman’s body was found on Jan. 18, hours before he was to present evidence to Argentine lawmakers that President Cristina Fernandez de Kirchner covered up Iran’s role in the 1994 attack on the AMIA Jewish center in Buenos Aires that left 85 dead and hundreds wounded.

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