Seven charged with involuntary manslaughter in Maradona’s death

Diego-Maradona

FILE - In this June 30, 2018 file photo, Argentinian soccer legend Diego Armando Maradona smiles prior to a match at the 2018 soccer World Cup in the Kazan Arena, in Kazan, Russia. Maradona's lawyer said Friday, March 8, 2019, that the former soccer star and current coach of Mexican club Dorados of Sinaloa will legally recognize three children that he fathered in Cuba. (AP Photo/Sergei Grits, File)

BUENOS AIRES — Seven health professionals who tended to Diego Maradona in the days before his death have been charged with involuntary manslaughter.

Maradona, who led Argentina to victory in the 1986 World Cup, died of a heart attack Nov. 25 at a rented residence outside Buenos Aires following brain surgery two weeks earlier. He was 60.

A medical board’s report given to prosecutors this month concluded that Maradona was in agony for more than 12 hours, did not receive adequate treatment and could still be alive if he had been properly hospitalized.

Prosecutors on Wednesday charged neurosurgeon Leopoldo Luque and psychiatrist Agustina Cosachov, the two leaders of Maradona’s medical team, and five other health professionals with involuntary manslaughter.

A doctor, a psychologist, two nurses and a nurse coordinator were the others.

The medical panel’s report said "the patient’s signs of risk of life were ignored," adding that Maradona "showed unequivocal signs of a prolonged agony period" of at least 12 hours.

The care that Maradona received at the rented house, the report said, "did not fulfill the minimum requirements" for a patient with his medical history, and that he would have survived with "adequate hospitalization."

Maradona had suffered a series of medical problems, some due to excesses of drugs and alcohol. He was reportedly near death in 2000 and 2004.

Julio Rivas, a lawyer for Luque, said earlier this month that medical forensics of the report were flawed and "biased… with no scientific foundation."

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