Dec 10, 2015

Federal investigators move on ex-governor

WSJ: There was another development in the investigation into the affairs of the former governor of Sonora Saturday when the federal Attorney General secured the offices of the family’s businesses.

Three hour later, they were seen leaving the building, located in the Pitic neighborhood in the state capital of Hermosillo, carrying computer hard drives and accounting records of the brothers’ business holdings.Investigators made their move on the offices of ex-governor Guillermo Padrés Elías and his brother Miguel about 10:00pm Saturday.

Just 24 hours earlier, police arrested a veterinarian employed by one of the companies when they found him in possession of 3.5 million pesos (US $207.000). He was driving a luxury vehicle in Hermosillo when stopped by state police, who found the money in a cooler in the trunk.

State Attorney General Rodolfo Montes de Oca Mena told a press conference that Luis Aristides López Moreno had said in a statement he was an employee of Rancho Pozo Nuevo de Padrés, one of the four firms whose records were seized on the weekend.

The other companies are Agropecuaria Kobe, SPR de RL and PADEL Hermanos.
The veterinarian’s arrest was part of an ongoing investigation into the dealings of the former governor, who has been accused of corruption and money laundrying.

The probe also found that Miguel Padrés had moved $8.9 million from Mexico into U.S. bank accounts since his brother took office in 2009. The transfers appeared to have been made with the intention of hiding their origin and their destiny, according to documents seen by The Wall Street Journal.The Finance Secretariat launched a probe earlier this year into payments of at least US $3.3 million made to Miguel Padrés by a Sonora businessman with connections to firms that won contracts to provide school uniforms.

The investigation was turned over to the federal Attorney General’s money-laundering and organized crime units in November 2014.

Guillermo Padrés said at the time that the accusations were politically motivated. “This is a political attack,” he told the Journal in March. “It’s the strategy of the PRI [Institutional Revolutionary Party] to defame me because of the elections.”

Padrés, of the National Action Party, finished his term as governor this year and was succeeded by the PRI’s Claudia Pavlovich Arellano, who won election in June. After she took office in September, she vowed to punish her predecessor for corruption.

“Padrés won’t have enough time to spend what he stole from the state coffers,” she said.
The brothers’ business interests range from farming and breeding cattle to automotive and furniture sales.

No comments:

Post a Comment