Feb 1, 2012

Mexico Corruption: Attorney General admits major staff members commit “illegal activities”

Here the core problem of the Mexican government. The Attorney General's Office (Justice Department) is rife with corruption. The current attorney general, Marisela Morales Ibáñez, who took office on April 1, 2011has been focusing on reducing corruption in the departmentTranslated by CIP intern Michael Kane

La Jornada: "The Attorney General of the Republic of Mexico (PGR) is currently facing weaknesses, such as "tasks improperly performed by major staff members (federal agents, prosecutors, and experts), deficient criminal investigations, and arrest warrants granted by judges that are not executed" according to a risk assessment carried out by the Inspector General as part of a plan to combat corruption in the institution.

This report was released as part of the inauguration of a series of "corruption seminars" in which the Secretariat of Civil Service (SFP) reported that in the past six years, 7,550 public servants have been punished for committing crimes.

During the event, PGR representative César Alejandro Chávez Flores noted that the PGR had already carried out an assessment of the risks in order to find out why those who work in the department become corrupted. He explained that, among the factors, what stood out was that there is a lack of sufficient oversight over those who have access to information, which causes leaks that later affect the investigations.

Additionally, he said, those who work in the PGR believe that there is an inability to sanction those who violate rules. Added to these factors is the lack of public confidence in the institution.

In this context, under-prosecutor Miguel Ontiveros Alonso revealed that between April 2011 and January of this year, the strategy to combat corruption has resulted in 1,790 public servants being investigated for the violation of rules and acts of corruption; another 655 finding themselves subject to administrative sanctions, and 188 public employees--of which 120 were delegates, subdelegates, or directors of their area--undergoing criminal proceedings.

Max Kaiser, chief of staff of the Secretariat of Civil Service, said that for the first time in the history of the institution, 7,500 members of staff have been disqualified or fired and 3,629 economic sanctions have been imposed due to corruption." Spanish original

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